Spurred on by a client (you know who you are H) who stopped in to collect her cushions, after a minor shopping splurge in Guildford, and commented on our lack of recent blogs, here is what we have been up to.
January saw us in Paris at Maison et Objet, the show of shows, a vast trade fair, checking out all the new collections from existing suppliers and traipsing miles up and down the halls looking for great new things for the shop. The show has over 3,000 exhibitors — from the major players, like Bentley (as in the car) with security guards on the entrance into their super-blingy stand which was in fact a lavish house, to smaller niche suppliers, more in our comfort zone. We are always hunting for items that have an integrity about them, be it in the shape, the colour, the construction, something interesting and beautiful, maybe a bit quirky, that hopefully you can’t find anywhere else.
One of the most inspiring areas is lighting and we were bowled over by some of the pieces, more like art installations in their scale and materials, we just need a huge hall to put one of them in.
On a slightly smaller scale, but completely fabulous, these beautiful jellyfish chandeliers caught our eye. We also loved these more industrial lights by Marine Breynaert that combine precious metals and riveting to create these extraordinary architectural pendants. Finally on the lighting front, if you are looking for the perfect light for a child’s bedroom these whimsical silk cloud lights fit the bill.
After a full nine hours of walking and hunting we headed into Paris to our little hotel, very old school and charming. Having not managed a proper lunch and just grazed on nuts and chocolates from various stands we were on our knees and desperate for a glass of wine and a lovely french meal. The hotel directed us to a truly French restaurant, all tobacco stained walls, red banquettes and brass rails and the first glass of wine barely touched the sides, well mine didn’t, Boo is a little more restrained, her glass is always half full, I’m a bit more half empty! Snails to start, steak for main… for me anyway, Boo went off piste and ended up with veal intestines which was hilarious.
Day two dawned with a slightly delayed start as we got on the wrong train. After five hours more hunting, walking and a heated discussion with a problematic French supplier we were racing through the last few halls and quickly whizzing back round to double-check on the bigger items we wanted to order. Our final show highlight has to be the Astier de Villatte stand, the china is heavenly, rows and rows of exquisite little jugs, Boo had to drag me out.
Laudree macaroons bought for the trusty partners holding the fort at home and we were back to the airport, home to Gatwick and Boo’s shiny new white car.
Lots of the gorgeous new things we bought are arriving at the shop, so pop in and see us.