Girlfriend visit: The fabulous and the frugal

I am lucky to have multiple Susan-friends, and one is visiting in a few days. Le Duc will be away, so we have only ourselves to please, and will indulge in a happy blur of delights. We will see an intriguing exhibit at the Musée des Beaux-Arts on 1920s Modernism, "Colours of Jazz", browse a large, well-curated craft show, have one dinner out at a good restaurant and one in.

To mark our forty-two year friendship, we often we buy one small identical item: fanciful knee socks, a box of chocolates, a calendar.

On her last visit, she said, "I don't want to be rich, but I would like to buy anything I wanted, for just one day." She was not referring to couture Lanvin, but I wondered, What might we get up to, if we shredded the budget?

In my fantasy, our girlfriend duplicates deluxe might include:

1.  Cashmere dressing gowns from Brora
I'd buy the pink, and she'll have blue. (Another feature of my fantasy life is that I have no moths, ever.) Price, £695 but who cares?

2.  Christ shearling coats
We have a history here. In the '70s, I owned a no-name version, so heavy it felt like I was carrying the sheep. I sold it to her, but she abandoned it after one winter. This time we're getting coats made by Christ, remarkably light. Price for the Carola model, €1,900. Chicken feed!
3. Rings
We would like some jewelry, please. I prefer to shop vintage, but then we couldn't have our twins. I know she'd thrill to a Dorothée Rosen One-Footer Ring, and let's get them in gold, baby. In 18k, $2, 795. So reasonable I might add a diamond to mine!

Well that was fun! But the perfectly-fine reality is that we'll follow our longtime tradition, donations to one another's favourite charities, Doctors Without Borders for her, HelpAge for me.

That's not to say we're on an unalloyed austerity program; our Québec designers will offer alluring crafts both at the show and online via the Métiers d'Art du Québec web site. (Prices on site and below are in $CDN.)

Since the robes are out of reach, how about hers-and-hers handmade sleep masks? We'd chose from an assortment by Velvet Moustache par Marjorie Labreque; price, $22.
Susan especially likes ceramics, and who doesn't need a spoon-holder? We'd choose these, by Frédérique Bonmatin, $12 each—and maybe one for a hostess gift, too.

And it wouldn't be the first time we bought the same earrings! Maybe I can interest her in Osmose's tin earrings with small pearls; I like the mix of materials and graceful design. (Price, $38).

You never know what hijinks might arise. Last year, enroute home from a late, long dinner, we got into a snowball fight with kids standing outside a bar.

Look out, we're off the leash!


Susan B said…
Sounds like a fun time! Those spoon holders are so cute, what a clever idea!
materfamilias said…
Oh, how fabulous! I love the idea of this post -- fun to dream about shopping as if money were no object . . . and then to walk away, recognising that you're already quite content with what's within reach. . . and even better, content enough that you can give to others. No wonder you can still revel in a good snowball fight.
Unknown said…
So delightful, and two in one day! My best friend of over thirty years just left after ten days and did we have fun, including shopping, which we have enjoyed for all that time (she lives in PA so it is not so often now). I showed her how to make paper beds and I think she's on a roll (so to speak!). Oh, and I'll take that cashmere robe, which has given me a great idea... Thanks for the charming posts. Kirsten
Unknown said…
Oops! It is beads, not beds. Kirsten
LauraH said…
What a perfect way to spend the day with a good friend. Enjoy!
Oh and what hi jinx are you going to get up to this time?
I love the idea of splurging with a friend...
LPC said…
Have a wonderful, wonderful time. Longterm friends are a joy. And I like those ceramic spoon holders very very much.

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