Paris & Spain
It’s nearly the end of my summer break, so I popped over to Maison & Objet in France, and from there down to my little Spanish mountain house where I am finally getting the obras underway – five new roofs (each room has a separate one). I’ve had my little house for more than 20 years, and after being rained on a few too many times have taken the plunge. The builders are bringing the architect today, and work will commence when I leave. I’m happy, as once the roof is done, Phase 2 can commence. I’ve enlisted a gifted builder/decorator who will be restoring the house the traditional way, but with a contemporary twist. It’s all very exciting!
How better then, to get the creative juices flowing, than with a trip to Maison & Objet – an enormous trade show in Paris. Nine massive halls – each the size of a couple of football pitches – and some 8000 exhibitors. To be honest, after the first hall it was hard to concentrate, but I took pix of some of the standout items throughout.
I started with the ‘Eclectic’ hall, which I think was my favourite. I was greeted by Adjao’s massive ‘tree lights’ and furry lights which were real showstoppers. There was fabulous lighting throughout the show – from mega-buck installations to handmade treats such as these pretty glass lampshades from Best Before.
Basket lampshades were everywhere, as were bonkers fluffy ones – the fluffy theme also extending to furniture. Mad!
I also loved the various antique stands (not what you usually find at a trade show) and sumptous ‘sail’ lampshades.
I found gorgeous tin tiles on display at various stands. These can be used in a number of spots around the home (or business) and are proving popular as headboards. Please let me know if you would be interested in tin tiles, and I will source some. Tin tiles are approx. 33x33cm, very light and easy to install.
On the tile theme, I also spotted ‘encaustic tile lino’ and ‘encaustic tile rugs’ (both below). Interesting!
Other highlights were the South African crafts and furniture on show in Hall 7, along with a handful of UK exhibitors.
I loved Laura Slater's gorgeous lampshades and cushions, while Philip Watts' giant door handles were impressive.
Philip Watts does bespoke ironwork, not just giant door handles but incredible staircases, for example.
I reckon I probably walked about 15 miles around the trade show, and if that wasn’t enough, I must have walked another 15 around Paris! On Saturday evening I found my way to the Eiffel Tower, and on Sunday morning I headed to St Germaine for a typical street café breakfast, enjoying the people-watching in Rue de Buci. From there I strolled up to Notre Dame and the trendy Marais district. Eating out in Paris is very pricy, so I ended up with the locals eating falafels for lunch in a playground off the main drag!
Arrived in Spain yesterday on the hottest day of the year so far – 43 degrees! The north end of my house has a slight breeze through dual aspect windows, but going to the other end literally feels like walking into an oven. Thankfully, the temperature is forecast to go down on Weds.
Next blog will feature some ‘before’ pix of my little mountain house before works commence. I absolutely love it here. The peace and quiet, fig trees in the garden, flocks of birds in the trees and the sound of goat-bells drifting over the valley. A few days here is just what’s needed before the return to work next week!
Hasta pronto, amigos,