Dispatches from Paris

Life in France, as reported by stylist and mom, Jennefer Rossi

It’s fashion week in Paris and I’m on my way to BLESS to help out lay out their display. For those who don’t know Bless, it’s a conceptual fashion label. Their creations include product and fashion design, new solutions for day-to-day life, which – depending on the product – come out in limited editions of 20 to 2000 pieces of one particular design. Bless was founded in 1996 by two great minds: Desiree Heiss and Ines Kaag. BLESS has a strong international following…see the IdN article here.

I took some pictures for you in their Paris shop and at their fashion week presentation. What I love about Bless is that they truly have their own voice—they do things on their own terms and the result is beautifully original (see the trompe l’oeil sheets below left!)

After a stop at Bless, I head to Nanashi, one of my family’s favorite spots to eat out when we can. In a city where you’re never at a loss for great meat, cheese, and bread, Nanashi offers a healthy alternative—a pioneer in a growing group of “healthier” eateries (Bob’s Kitchen, etc.).

The atmosphere is relaxed and the food is fresh and super tasty. A simple miso soup is made that much more special with fresh arugula. They offer bento boxes with vegetable, fish, or meat each day, and any one will delight the pallet. I can honestly say that everything is delicious, and as you will see from my photos, our favorite way to end is with cheese cake—one of the best in the city. The children have vanilla and we opt for the soothing green matcha flavor, courtesy of a Rose Bakery alum.

Saturday morning, we hosted my best friend’s parents for the day who wanted to go to a market. Our choice was the Marche Ave du President Wilson, a favorite among foodies and restaurant buyers.  Even if you don’t purchase anything, browsing this market is a joy. You can stroll though a very narrow aisle between two rows of stalls selling scrumptious sundries. We start with the cheeses and continue through, gazing at the luscious colors that surround us. Tomatoes red, orange, and yellow; mushrooms, dirty brown ochre, and burnt umber; lettuce greens; dahlias, pink and lavender.

A favorite moment this morning is getting lollipops from the butchers carving fresh liver while we look at a selection of fowl and fresh rabbits. It is an incredible education to say the least, for all who wander through. I read in  a Frommer’s review that “one stallmaster even sells a type of heirloom pea, Kelvedon Marvel, that was a particular favorite of Louis XIV, who preferred eating them to bedding one of his mistresses.” A major attraction here is a vegetable stall operated by Joel Thiebault, who supplies the city’s best restaurants.

We decide to get a cheese that my daughter loves—a fresh goat covered in black ash—fresh red currents and raspberries, a bag of walnuts, and, of course, a baguette, and an almond custard slice and two lemon tartlets.

We proceed to the Champs du Mars in front of the Eiffel Tower, sit on the lawn and savor our food as we watch the rain clouds rolling in.

A beautiful Saturday morning before we run for cover.