Spring in Bloom

Created in collaboration with Viktor & Rolf, photographed in Batignolles & Parc Monceau, Paris

Spring has finally sprung! Hooray for all the SAD sufferers out there! Me included. I’m definitely affected by seasonal affective disorder and am perennially cold. Ask anyone who knows me and they’ll probably tell you that my most used phrase is: “I’m cold.” I’m basically cold when the temp dips below 25 degrees (so most of the year) and sleep with a hot water bottle for 6 months of it. Yes even with a boyfriend in bed with me. You may laugh, but it means I get 360 degree warmth ;). I also have a small hot water bottle that I travel with, so I’m always prepared to banish any cold chills!

Spring is therefore unsurprisingly my favourite time of the year, not just for its transformative nature, as trees sprout leaves and flowers begin to bloom, but because it's the first sign that the temperature will begin to rise and I’ll actually start to feel my fingers and feet again when I leave the house. Spring also has a distinct scent - my favoured of all the seasons. As one with sensitive smell - my super power if you will (not so great when riding the Paris metro), I associate people and places with smell and would happily bottle this season's scent so I can sniff it all year round. Viktor and Rolf’s new fragrance, Flowerbomb Bloom, launched just in time for the arrival for spring has done just that! It’s a fresher, more aerial and sparkling take on their iconic scent, Flowerbomb, which was created over 10 years ago. They’ve kept the same memorable musky base, and notes of vanilla and patchouli, but injected a breath of fresh air. This added whiff of invigorating air (an innovative molecule captured at the top of the mountain ranges of the Pacific Northwest, and recreated synthetically rather cleverly) has been blended with a burst of fresh flowers, and notes of pomegranate, bergamot and mandarin oils. It’s sweet, but not too sweet, and leaves a lingering floral trail, as it surely did when I wandered around Batignolles last week, hunting down pretty blooms and blossoms, and chasing warmer rays, when shooting this editorial. Is Spring is your favourite season? 

uerodierviktorandrolf8.jpg
ruerodierviktorandrolf25.jpg

Photos of me by Roxanne Matizbit.ly/FlowerbombBloom

Autumn Knits: Part Three

Photographed in Place Vendôme, Paris

ruerodierchicwishpink1.jpg

I'm not one for wearing a lot of colour and tend to steer clear of bolder shades unless it comes in the shape of lipstick or nail polish. But if you're like me and like to break out of your sartorial comfort zone for the festive season, by brightening up your wardrobe with a few key items that work for day or evening, then now's the time to invest in something fun like this Frilling Hemline Sweater from Chicwish

If you haven't heard about Chicwish yet, I suggest you swat up now. The brand creates fun fashion-forward feminine pieces that are perfect for sprucing up your wardrobe when it's feeling a bit drab, or when you need something a little more interesting than jeans and a white tee (literally my go-to look!).

I picked the Frilling Hemline Sweater for its flattering peplum hemline that draws your shape in at the waist (also great for fuller figures) and its nod to one of this year's biggest trends - ruffles. The sweater perfectly translates ruffles for colder weather and has just the right amount of flounce to make you feel like you're wearing something special and form hugging, without going overboard - if you're more of a minimalist like me. Paired with these wide-legged wool cropped trousers, which sport a subtle check and elevated with simple blue suede stilettos, it has maximum impact with minimal effort. We shot this look on a beautiful sunny day last week in the elegant surroundings of Place Vendôme - where it doesn't get much more festive than here during the holidays (Christmas trees have sprung up throughout the square), and with those cobalt blue doors providing just the right amount of pop against the violet pink of the sweater. 

I'm wearing Chicwish Frilling Hemline Sweater // Iris & Ink Cropped Trousers from The Outnet // Whistles Court Shoes, similar here // ME+EM Leather Saddle Bag // NARS Lipstick

I'm wearing Chicwish Frilling Hemline Sweater // Iris & Ink Cropped Trousers from The Outnet // Whistles Court Shoes, similar here // ME+EM Leather Saddle Bag // NARS Lipstick

Created in collaboration with Chicwish. Creative Direction by me, photographed by Roxy Matiz.

Weekend-ing in the 10ème

I moved to the 10ème from the 9ème (the 9ème being where Rue Rodier resides) two years ago and besides being home, it has swiftly become my favourite arrondissement. It's still walking distance to the Marais, where I lived briefly and do prefer to shop, but I'm near Canal Saint Martin, which feels decidedly more Parisian (as it's less touristy), and I have many of my favourite haunts on my doorstep. These places are where I can enjoy all of my favourite weekend things - buying fresh flowers, grabbing coffee coffee/drinks with friends...And the weekend is still the part of the week which I look forward to most. Despite having said goodbye to a 9-5 office job when I moved to Paris from London and now working to my own schedule, I haven't left the admin, daily grind, emails and to-do lists behind and still long for the two days of the week when I don't feel bad relaxing. I may sometimes work on Saturdays and Sundays, but I don't feel guilty heading out to take some time off, including cycling down to le Marché Bastille (controversially for this post, located in the 11ème) to stock up for the week ahead - and where you'll often find me most Sundays scoffing accras and slurping on oysters and Muscadet. So yes it's Monday, but roll on the weekend!

Scroll down for a guide to my hood & outfit links.

ruerodierlancaster7.jpg
ruerodierlancaster8.jpg

I'm wearing: French Connection Jacket // Lancaster Paris leather bucket bag, similar here & here // Acne Studios scarf, similar here // Madewell Jeans // Mac Lipstick, similar here // Michael Kors leather slippers, similar here 

ruerodierlancaster10.jpg

Photographed at Petit Chateau d'Eau

ruerodierlancaster14.jpg
shopstory.jpg

I'm wearing: Iris & Ink Cashmere sweater // Zara PVC skirt, similar here // Lancaster Paris red leather clutch, similar here & here // Zara blue velvet heels, similar here & here // Mango earrings // Mac Lipstick, similar here

shopoutfit.jpg
guide.jpg

Breakfast:
La Chambre aux Ousieaux

Coffee:
Ten Belles
Craft
La Fontaine de Belleville (also lunch) 

Lunch:
Petit Chateau d’Eau (great brasserie for lunch/dinner & in photos)
Sunken Chip (fish & chips)
La Marine (brasserie, great for Sundays)
Sesame (good bagels)
SAaM (bao buns)
Sol Semilla (vegetarian)

Shopping: 
O'Fleurs de Magenta (in photos)
Jamini (India-inspired interiors) 
La Tresorerie (scandi interiors)
Centre Commercial (clothing)
A.P.C

Dinner: 
Le Petit Cambodge
Hotel du Nord
Les Enfants Perdu

Drinks: 
Copper Bay
Le Comptoir General

Photos of me by Roxy Matis, edited by me. 

Autumn Knits: Part Two

Photographed in Palais Royal, Paris

Originally the thought of matching knits made me conjure up images of the infamous twinset - a style made famous in the 50s and 60s by the likes of Jackie O and Grace Kelly. Although chic at the time, I distinctly remember mums donning them in the 80s and turning the once stylish combo into what can only be described as somewhat past its sell by date. 

But the matching knit concept has been revived, remade and upgraded for the modern woman, into the knitted skirt set or 'co-ord'. Equal parts cosy (and warm), as it is stylish, this set is ideal for cold winter days when you’re fed up of wearing jeans or trousers, or just want to look stylish when you’d rather be wearing pyjamas or fuzzy jogging bottoms, i.e no fuss - just-throw-it-on-and-go outfit. So comfortable, I could probably easily go to bed in it. So when I spotted this Comfy Direction Sweater and Skirt set in Grey on Chicwish - a site with a plethora of chic and happily affordable items, I knew immediately what I was going to wear for the second part in my collaboration with Chicwish. And you know how I love grey! I'm usually a size 34-36, so selected size small, but it is a perfect fit and the skirt even flattens by hips (try as I might to wear a pleated skirt, I just cannot get them to look good in one), which are on the wider size for my frame. 

I do love a bit of art imitating life, so we (Roxy & I) photographed the shoot in Palais Royal amongst Daniel Burian's sculptures -  note how the ribbed knit combo complements the black and white candy cane columns. 

ruerodiergreyknit4.jpg

I'm wearing the Chicwish Comfy Direction Sweater and Skirt Set in Grey // COS navy coat, similar here & here // APC Demi-Lune Leather Shoulder bag // LK Bennet Leather Snake-Print boots, similar here & here

ruerodiergreyknit14.jpg
ruerodiergreyknit12.jpg
shopstory.jpg

Creative Direction: Marissa Cox // Photographed by Roxanne Matiz, with photos edited by Marissa Cox.

Autumn Knits: Part One

Photographed at Du Pain et Des Idées in Paris

I'm wearing: Chicwish Sweater // COS Wool Coat, similar here, here and here // LK Bennet Boots, similar here, here and here // ME+EM Leather Saddle Bag // Madewell Jeans // Dior Lipstick // Sisley Foundation

There's nothing more satisfying than updating your wardrobe when the season changes. Ok I think of a few things - Thai prawn red curry, popcorn, a rom com with popcorn, the perfect light, a hug, a glass of good red wine, roast, spicy margarita... But seriously as a woman, the wardrobe is serious business - you want to look good; you don't want to look like you just dragged yourself out of bed and got dressed in the dark. And who wants to spend an hour every morning trying to figure out what to wear?! Ok I still do that sometimes, but either way it's better to be prepared. As soon as the temperatures begin to drop, or when I pack my swimsuit away, I start thinking about what I need to update my wardrobe with. I'm one of those people that goes through her wardrobe at least four times a year to clear out the old, over worn and not so loved items to make way for fresh, joy-inducing items (yes I'm citing Marie Kondo's tidying bible). I give it a good spring, summer, autumn and winter clean, and I even go so far as to make an inventory of what I have and a list of what I need - try it, it'll certainly helps solve those "i have nothing to wear" moments. Not that I've banished them, I'm just much better at getting dressed in the morning since doing this. US brand, Chicwish, besides doing a brilliant choice of stylish year-round items, offers a great selection of knits that will up your winter dressing anté. 

This is the first of a three part series showcasing a few of my favourite knits from the Chicwish collection. First up is the Lace-up Rhythm Sweater in white. If you've been following me for a while, you might know that I have a habit of going minimal to the max - in other words I often wear a uniform. So I thought it was time to push my sartorial sweater boundaries and pick one with some detailing, like this slightly risqué, sexier tied-up, yet still cosy and warm sweater, as what's the use of clothes (besides covering our modesty and keeping us warm), if we can't have some fun, whilst also feeling more confident. I paired the sweater with jeans, leather snake-printed boots and a navy coat and saddle bag, whilst indulging in a l'escargot rhum raisin at one of my favourite boulangeries in the neighbourhood, Du Pain et Des Idées - this place combined with its colours and smell of baked goods wafting out the door, couldn't be a more perfect place to hang out in autumn!

Created in collaboration with Chicwish.

Chicwish Sweater // COS Wool Coat, similar herehere and here // LK Bennet Boots, similar herehere and here // ME+EM Leather Saddle Bag // Madewell Jeans // Dior Lipstick // Sisley Foundation

Close-up of the   sweater's   lace detailing

Close-up of the sweater's lace detailing

ruerodiercwlacejumper24.jpg
ruerodiercwlacejumper25.jpg
ruerodiercwlacejumper16.jpg

Creative Direction: Marissa Cox // Photographed by Roxanne Matiz, with photos edited by Marissa Cox.

White Heat

Ah heat -  the sun briefly reared its head a couple of weeks ago, only to disappear behind a blanket of grey cloud more recently. These photos were shot on a fortuitously sunny day at the Palais de Tokyo (one of my favourite Paris galleries) before we had our little short-lived heatwave a couple of weekends ago (remember me wearing my off the shoulder Ganni top?). Luckily, in between passing clouds, brilliant white sun shone down onto the sand coloured stone building – making it look deceptively hot and like I'm basking in its rays. It was nippy at best (and freezing in the shadow).

{An aside note: now you may or may not know that I'm British (well half - other is American, but I spent my whole life in the UK before moving to Paris, besides an ERASMUS year in Valencia, Spain during university), and we are notoriously known for talking about the weather. I do it on a daily basis, it's part of my culture - having grown up on an island that is regularly battered by the elements, so forgive me if I often prattle on about it!}

As soon as spring hits, I fish out my parka – it’s lightweight so good for the (ever so slightly) warmer weather, and has a hood – protection for any of those frequent spring showers. I’m currently looking out of the window at a friend's in London, while I write this and am watching the grey sky fill with rain clouds – so a hood is a necessitiy, if not one of those clear hooded gagools that they dish out at the Niagara Falls for example? I joke (kind of).

This particular one is from A.P.C and I’ve had it going on 5 years.  A parka is a wardrobe essential and you can’t go wrong Khaki – it goes with everything and it’s refreshing adding a little green to your closet as the season changes. Other great options: here, here, here and here

I also start wearing white when spring comes around. This year I'm being a bit more daring and wearing it top to toe, rather tricky when you live in a city, it's better on the beach - but I will persevere!  It crops up on the catwalks every year as it's just so easy to wear (as long as you don't go near red wine, spaghetti bolognese, animals, general everyday life) and will keep you cool when the heat finally hits. [Scroll down for outfit links!]

I'm wearing:

ME+EM white jeans (they run a little big so take a size down // & Other Stories Silver Shoes // Ray Bans // COS bow front shirt shirt - similar Topshop one here, Ellery one here and Tibi here // Tom Ford  // Noir Jewellery earrings from the Outnet, similar here

ruerodierwhiteheat12.jpg

Shop the post below: 

Photos of me by Roxanne Matiz, edited by me. 

Market Fleurs

One of my favourite things to do when I'm home in France is go to the market (simple pleasures). Finally the weather and me being in Paris for the weekend convened, so this morning I donned my off-the-shoulder Ganni top (it's a little more than I'd usually pay, but great quality and actually stays off the shoulder, unlike most tops which seem to pop off every time I lift my arms) that I picked up in Copenhagen last week, my (self-labeled) ugly sandals, which I happen to love (hopefully I'm managing to pull them off and don't look like I'm about to go on a hike into the Amazon - although obviously I plan to wear them for that too!) and picked up a couple of Velibs (another favourite past-time) and cycled to the market at Bastille. There we ate oysters (there are a couple of stalls where you can get 6 for 6€ and a plastic cup of white wine for 2€ (the best kind of sunday lunch), followed by canelés, picked up the week's food shopping and bought that all-important bunch of flowers (white peonies!) for an Instagram photo (clearly the real reason for a market visit). You can see it all on my snapchat: marissacoxparis. 

// Ganni top //

I'm wearing Ganni top //  Ray Bans // Lancome lipstick

I'm wearing Ganni top // COS jeans // Teva Sandals // Ray Bans // Iris & Ink bag, similar here // Lancome lipstick

Shop the post: 

Arc de Triomphe

I have a lot of posts to publish and I'm meant to be publishing three other posts before this one, but in light of the atrocities that happened on Friday night, I feel it's important to post this first. I took these photos the previous Sunday. I woke up early and joined my friend

Rachelle

up the Arc de Triomphe. I haven't been in years and she is sadly leaving Paris in a couple of weeks, so we both wanted to enjoy the views before the trees lost all of their beautiful autumnal rust-coloured and golden leaves. 

I'm still in shock about what happened in the city I now call home. The scary thing is it could have been me or any of my friends, as the places they targeted were bars and restaurants which I and they often go to... I've heard so many stories of near misses, of friends who were meant to be in le Petit Cambodge or Le Carillon that night for example, but by some weird twist of fate they decided not to go or were prevented from going. The one positive thing that has come out of these atrocities is the sense of community - Parisians and people around the world have rallied together in defiance. Just this week there have been various events, such as #tousaubistrot - encouraging Parisians to support and eat in their favourite restaurants and bistros as an act of defiance. I will not stop enjoying my life here, having coffee with friends in cafes, dining in restaurants, strolling the Parisian streets - I will try to be more vigilant if that is possible, but I will not let the fear seep too far into me. 

I've spent the last five days not only trying to process what's happened in my mind, but trying to educate myself as much as possible, reading about who these people are who want to spread fear and terror, and destroy our way of living. This article written for

The Atlantic

earlier this year does a great job at explaining who they are, where they came from and why they're doing what they're doing.. Anyway I want this blog to be a space for positivity and inspiration so I will let the rest of the photos I took on top of the Arc de Triomphe do the talking and act as a little tribute to the city I love. 

At Home With Betsy Kasha, Co-founder of A+B Kasha

American export Betsy is one half of A+B Kasha, an interior design and real estate agency based in Saint-Germain-des-Prés, which she founded ten years ago this month with her husband Alon. The agency specialises in pied-a-terre properties in the Saint-Germain area on some of Paris' most charming streets. After moving to London from New York for Alon's work, they visited Paris for a weekend and fell in love with the city. They decided they wanted a pied-a-terre apartment of their own, so they bought an apartment with beautiful bones, but one which needed gutting and renovating. With the skills and experience they learnt from managing such a huge project, they decided to establish A+B Kasha and move to the City of Lights permanently. Today they create beautiful pied-a-terre apartments - apartments that have all been hand-picked by Betsy and Alon and then thoughtfully and beautifully restored to their natural glory. There is nothing too ambitious for this design duo, which you can see from their apartment below - it too was gutted, renovated and restored, to create a beautiful two bedroom apartment in one of Paris' most sought-after neighbourhoods. 

Scroll down to read the interview.

Why did you move to Paris?

I moved to Paris in 2004 from London with my family to start our company A+B Kasha now celebrating its tenth anniversary!

What inspired you to establish your own real estate and interior design agency and how did you get there?

It was more of an evolution than an inspiration. And that’s usually how life is…we had just moved to London from New York when we were invited to use our friend’s apartment in Paris for the weekend. After a great weekend, I knew I wanted a Paris pied-a-terre of my own, and we ended up buying one in Saint Germain-des-Pres that had great style but needed a ton of work.

The process of buying and renovating an apartment in Paris turned into a bigger project than we expected, and showed us all the inefficacies of the Paris market. This gave us an idea that turned into A+B Kasha, The Art of the Pied-a-terre. In essence, we were our first clients.

What words of advice do you have for someone following their own career path and setting up a business?

Trust your instincts, surround yourself with smart and honest people, and be prepared to work all the time.

How long have you lived in your apartment?

We bought this apartment after living (around the corner) for five years. The renovation took a year, and we moved in four years ago.

What were the biggest decorating/renovation challenges?

Our apartment had two glaring problems: (1) the floor plan was impractical and uncomfortable, and (2) the beautiful old herringbone floor was sagging, creating 10cm bow in each room.

First, we completely flipped the floor plan of the apartment; the main bathroom located off the living room became the kitchen; two bedrooms in the back became a large master bedroom and bathroom; and the kitchen and dining room located above the living room became the bedroom and bathroom for our daughter.

Today, the living, dining and kitchen are together and the bedrooms are on opposite sides of the apartment…the flow of the apartment works perfectly for our lifestyle.

How would you describe your interior style?

For me, balance and context are big keys to good design.

In my work, I always choose elements which will be harmonious together, and that make sense for the space. In my apartment, I like order but I shy away from formality. I like to be surrounded by beautiful art, but I am very sensitive to visual clutter. The key is balance.

In terms of context, it is important to stay true to the proportion and natural charm of the space. As stunning as Versailles is - for example - its style and proportion does not work in a Directoire-period apartment like mine. It is a question of respecting the natural beauty of the space and “dressing” it to enhance rather than distract.

Favourite piece(s) of furniture/treasures?

I make it a habit to only keep objects, furniture and art that give me pleasure. But I will single out the metal bookcase in our living room for its sculptural silhouette. It also has interesting provenance…it was designed in the 1920’s to store heavy machinery in a French factory.

The painting over my bed is also special to me. It was painted by artist Cecile Defforey. I think it has a magical quality.

Favourite places/shops to buy for your home?

In addition to the furniture dealers I work with regularly, two of my favourite home stores are Caravane (rue Jacob) for its soft sofas, bedding and accessories and Original BTC Lighting (rue Bonaparte) for its great ceiling, wall and bathroom lights.

Interiors/style that have inspired you?

I love the work of designers Axel Vervoordt, John Saladino, and Alexandra & Michael Misczynski.

What do you like most about the area you live in, in Paris?

I love the energy of Saint Germain des Pres…it has a quirky, village feel. I also appreciate its cultural and architectural history.

Favourite sources for inspiration? (ie Pinterest, instagram)

I often get design inspiration from the most unlikely places. Yesterday it was the floor of an old boulangerie, and the day before, it was a beautiful ceramic pool in a private garden. I always have my phone with me so I just snap a photo and keep it in my inspiration file.

Favourite three social media mavens (could be instagrammer, blogger, Pinterest user)?

My social media of choice is Instagram. I love following the Instagram of the Beach-chic concept store, Pistol and Lucy (pistolandlucy), in Malibu, CA.

I also follow blogger/instagrammer Alexandra Stafford (alaxandracooks); her food photos and recipes are mouth-watering! And I have become a devoted fan of artist Kevin Scorgie’s instagram (kevin_scorgie) as well as his work.

Last good book you read?

My Brilliant Friend by Elena Ferrante

What’s in your magazine pile?

AD France, Elle Decoration (France), Vanity Fair, and The Week (US Edition)

Go-to alcoholic beverage?

Red Wine, although I rarely say no to Champagne.

Tea or coffee?

Coffee, but only in the morning

Handbag essentials?

Sunglasses, lipstick, liquorice Ricola, Farrow&Ball colour chart, and a tape measure

What do you do to relax?

I am learning how to meditate…

Paris favourites:

Café: Outside at La Palette on rue de Seine… perfect for an outdoor cocktail or lunch with friends.

Restaurant; It is too difficult to single out one restaurant because there are so many amazing ones. But my new favourite dining spot is Come a Casa on rue Pache in the 11eme. It was introduced to me by my Italian foodie friend, Max, and it has some of the best Italian food I have ever had. My mouth is watering just thinking about it.

Shop: Honestly, my go-to store is Le Bon Marche…for everything!  I am rarely disappointed.

Words & photos by Marissa Cox. 

 

At Home With Editor of The Other Art of Living, Sophie Trem

I discovered Sophie a little while ago through Instagram. She oozes positive energy and by the photos on her feed, I could see that her home reflected her personality. So I reached out and ventured down to the 13th. It's not an area I go to very often, so I was a little out of my comfort zone and admittedly got a bit lost. But I finally found her building and she opened her door with a big smile. We immediately clicked and I spent a few hours there, chatting, snapping photos and munching on a delicious breakfast that she kindly laid out - obviously just how any photo shoot should go. 

She’s been in her home for 5 years, and it’s the kind of space that you want to curl up in with a good magazine. It’s bright and cosy, and filled with personality and warmth, with touches of colour and pattern - in other words, a real home.  

Paris born and bread, of Cambodian descent, she grew up in Paris’ China Town and has remained in the area, where she lives with her husband and two small boys. She works as a freelance web and fashion consultant, as well as working part-time for Qwant, looking after their communications. Her blog, The Other Art of Living is full of positive vibes, inspiration and tips for mastering the art of living well! 

Scroll down to read the interview.

What inspired you to start your blog?

It was a time in my life when I wanted to change direction. I went back to school because I needed to learn new things. That’s how I started, but it was not supposed to be a blog, just a website showing what I could do as a freelance creative consultant…  I was so surprised when I was invited to an event for bloggers the very first time!

What words of advice do you have for someone following their own career path and freelancing?

Listen to yourself; try to feel it. Do things you want to, not only because you have to. That makes a huge difference.

Any projects in the pipeline?  

Don’t get me started! ;)  I think I have as many dreams as there are stars in the sky, so I always have a project on the go! But seriously, I’m currently really excited about my first collaboration with K-Swiss. We are launching an exclusive style of the Classic tennis shoe this Thursday at Colette. I still can’t believe it’s real; it’s a dream come true!

I was also a part of the jury for Maison & Objet last week and of course my (almost) full-time job at Qwant is full of new adventures everyday, that’s a startup lifestyle both ways.

What do you like most about the area you live in?

There’s such a great energy here, which I guess is because of the mixture of cultures. We are near Chinatown where I grew up, and this is one of those new areas mixed with old, with a real family spirit. On top of that there are also a lot of green spaces, which is so important when you have kids.

What were the biggest decorating challenges you faced when you moved in?

Our apartment is a former medical office, so renovating that into a home was the biggest challenge. But as soon as I got there, I had the image of what our home would be, I could totally visualise it, then it had to be!

How would you describe your interior style?

I guess it’s a mix of modern, Scandinavian & boho, we like to mix everything together.

Favourite piece(s) of furniture/treasures?

I never know how to answer that one as I like everything, but more as an ensemble. Although I do love the buffet we’ve had for years because there’s a funny story behind it, and I love when things have their own story!

Favourite places/shops to buy for your home?

Recently I just went nuts at my friends store Jamini! I love the designer, the products – I just can’t get enough of those pillows, they really add some flavour to the spirit of my home. I also really like Bloomingville and Bxxlight. 

Interiors/style that have inspired you?

L’Eclaireur, Merci, Maison & Objet

Favourite sources for inspiration?

Travel and blogs, such as blogger & instagrammer, Jesus Sauvage.

Favourite three lifestyle blogs?

Inside Closet, Apartment Therapy, Anna G, Beautyarchi

Last good book you read? 

I haven’t finished it yet, but I’m really enjoying: Le jour ou j’ai appris à vivre from Gounelle (the day I learned to live.)

What’s in your magazine pile?

Home magazine, Le M Monde, Les Inrocks, Society, Happinez, Vogue and MPA.

What’s in your fridge?

Organic fruits and veggies and some easy stuffs for kids like ham & cheese and a lot of different condiments & juices

Go-to alcoholic beverage?

None!

Tea or coffee?

Tea!

Handbag essentials?

Lipsticks, money, pressed powder, earplugs, kleenex and something to rinse your hands.

What do you do to relax?

I play with my kids, I sleep, I play music with my friends, and I love spending hours in my bathroom and having a home spa!

Paris favourites:

Café: Le Bonaparte is around the corner from my office, it's super convenient. It's a tourist trap, but I still love being amazed by my city.  

Restaurant: there are so many I love, but one of my all time favourite cantines is New Hoa Khoan, 15 Avenue de Choisy, 75013. It does the best dim sum in Paris, trust me!

Shop: Colette for its crazy selection from street to high end, Merci as most of the fashion designers I love are there, Heimstone, Le Bon Marché, L’Eclaireur, Jamini and…. Monoprix for everything!

For kids: Maralex, Little Michel & Noel online and Womb.

Words & photos by Marissa Cox. 

 

At Home With Emily Sell, owner of Ever After Press

Despite being now happily settled in the city of lights for a year, it never really occurred to Emily to move to Paris. She relocated last summer after her husband was offered a job in the French capital - something not many could or would turn down! They met whilst both living in Dubai, so although Paris was never on her to-do list, having lived as an expat for a few years in the UAE, it seemed like a natural decision to live in another city. I met her not long after she moved for a coffee and was very happy to have a fellow Brit in town. After visiting her apartment one evening for a little soiree that she organised with friends, I felt I had to photograph her in her beautiful space and find out a little more about how she set up Ever After Press and her interior inspirations. 

Scroll down to read the interview! 

What inspired you to establish your own wedding stationery company and how did you get there? 

It's been a pretty circuitous route! My first ‘grown up’ job was in a law firm in Dubai. I had just finished my law degree and moved out to the UAE after university. I really enjoyed it, but I’ve always been very creative and it wasn’t long before I started to crave a less corporate career. Once we started planning our own wedding I became pretty obsessed with wedding stationery, and Style Me Pretty. In order to gain the technical skills I needed to work in design, we moved back to London where I studied Graphic Design. After graduating, I worked as a designer in London for a couple of years, before going full time with 

Ever After Press. I think I always knew really that I would like to work for myself, as the kind of design that I like is quite niche. 

I started off working from home, setting up a basic website with the designs that I had already done for friends and starting to figure out my prices. A year later I redesigned my website, as by then I had a clearer idea of what I wanted to offer. I'm now excited to be working on a new high end range of off the shelf designs which I hope to launch in a few months time. Working as a wedding stationery designer is the perfect way for me to be able to work with the understated feminine graphic design aesthetic that I love every day, and help my bespoke couples transform their ideas into reality.

What words of advice do you have for someone following their own career path and setting up a business? 

Spending time on getting things right behind the scenes and streamlining everything as much as possible is a real investment in your business, so don't worry about taking your time and figuring out the small details so that everything runs as smoothly as possible. I think it's also important to be flexible and to continually assess what your clients are looking for, and then try to answer that with your offering.

I always find it inspiring to listen to the Design Sponge Heritage Radio Network podcast 'After The Jump' and at the moment I'm enjoying the emails for entrepreneurs that you can sign up for at Hey Sweet Pea.

What were the biggest decorating challenges?

I was pretty determined to find a classic Haussmann style apartment with herringbone parquet floors, coving and panelling (you only live in Paris once, right)? and was really pleased when we managed to wade through all the bureaucracy and secure one that we liked, but all the panelling means that we have lots of canvasses tucked away in cupboards and under beds. I was surprised by the lack of central ceiling lights, apparently that's a typical French thing...we only have one chandelier in the hallway and other than that we have to rely on ambient lighting. We definitely need to invest in some more lamps. It makes for quite a cosy atmosphere at night though. It's pretty geeky but we were lucky to find a place with a fair bit of built in storage which I love, I'm a bit of a neat freak and love having somewhere to hide away coats, shoes and suitcases.

How would you describe your interior style?

Minimal with a neutral palette, with Scandinavian and French influences. I like a lot of grey and white with a splash of pink here and there. I love having fresh flowers in the apartment - peonies, white hydrangeas, anenomes and ranunculus are my favourites when they are in season.

Favourite piece(s) of furniture/treasures? 

I love my sleep so one of my favourite items has to be the beautiful French carved bed we bought just before moving to Paris. We have a pair of vintage Bertoia white chairs from the 70's, which I love because they are just a little bit rusted and imperfect in places. Some paper pom poms left over from our wedding hang above my desk and the Paloma's Nest ring bearer bowl that we had made for our wedding, which sits on my bedside table (and where I keep my everyday jewellery when I go to bed), is really special to me too. I love everything Paloma's Nest make – they are the perfect gifts for any friends getting married.

Favourite places/shops to buy for your home?

My favourite interiors stores are West Elm and Cox & Cox. I also love Aesop, Diptyque, Ferm Living and Story North.

Interiors/style that have inspired you?

I love design blogs, such as LOVENORDICThe Design ChaserThe Style Files and Blonde and Bone - my Pinterest

 account is full of home inspiration that I love, as well as boards categorised by room. For something more colourful I always like checking out the work of Emily Henderson and on Instagram I love @mrorlandosoria for his hilarious captions as well as interior design inspo. I'm always so impressed by furniture hacks like those on The Painted Hive...I wish I had her patience! :) I like Antipodean design a lot - Graphic Design, Interiors and wedding styling, they just always seem to get it so right!

What do you like most about the area you live in, in Paris?

We live in the 16th arrondissement, an area usually known for its affluent older ladies and little dogs, as well as its beautiful architecture. I love living there as we are right in between the Eiffel Tower and the Arc De Triomphe. We can wander down to Ladurée on the Champs-Elysées for a weekend brunch in 20 minutes and our local art gallery, the Palais de Tokyo, is my favourite in Paris.

Favourite three social media mavens? 

This is such a hard one!! For lifestyle and fashion, I love Kelli Murray @kellimurray - an incredible illustrator based in California, with the best IG feed and blog...her style is awesome and she's a friend of my amazingly talented calligrapher friend Suzy Lee @hellosuzylee - (Suzy's work is beyond perfect and she is also an incredible person).

For general design inspiration, Besotted Blog has been my go to favourite for a very long time. And last but not least, @thefatjewish and @picathepom ... they are always guaranteed to make me laugh.

Favourite three lifestyle blogs?

Kelli MurrayOh Joy! and Cupcakes and Cashmere

Last good book you read? 

The last book I read (in 2 days without putting it down) was The Martian - I loved it! So different from what I normally read, and a total page-turner, I highly recommend it; I'm now obsessed with space! I usually end up reading quite dark books and I'm trying to change that. I love Kazuo Ishiguro, and East of Eden by John Steinbeck is another favourite. 

What’s in your magazine pile?

Kinfolk, Cereal and Living Etc.

What’s in your fridge?

Champagne, lots of cheese, loads of fresh veggies, fruit and probably at least one cured pork product (my husband is of Italian descent so we always have pasta ingredients ready to go). And some very dark chocolate.

Go-to evening drink?

I do like a good Hendrick's and Fever Tree tonic with cucumber. I love a cold bottle of corona (I'm such a lightweight I often can't handle wine) and after dinner an amaretto always makes me happy.

Tea or coffee?

I have an embarrassing sensitivity to caffeine, which means I'm normally the person trying to ask for chamomile tea or chocolate chaud in terrible French, in all the great new coffee places popping up in Paris.

Handbag essentials?

My iPhone, a good book for the metro, Narciso Rodriguez perfume, lip balm and a snack, to avoiding being hangry!

And finally a few of your Paris favourites?

Café: Our favourite little local French place for relaxed almond croissants on weekend mornings

Restaurant: Ellsworth

Shops: my local florist, Merci and A.P.C

A Weekend in Montargis

I do love a good weekend getaway, and August is the best month for it, especially if you're one of the last souls who has been left behind in the city, while what seems like every last Parisian has deserted the capital in search of sun, sand and sea.. Luckily my friend

Meg

invited us (along with a few other friends), to her boyfriend's parents' ridiculously beautiful, film set-worthy house in Montargis. Although the weather didn't quite play fair and it remained cloudy most of Saturday, it didn't stop us frolicking in a

sunflower field

, picking fruit and vegetables from the amazing garden (serious life goals right there), BBQ-ing, eating outside and generally enjoying a couple of days of not breathing in Paris' car fumes or other ripe, unpleasant smells that emanate from the streets in summer - dubbed by many as 'eau de Paris'. Having felt lethargic as of late, it was the perfect weekend away to rejuvenate, enjoy nature and leave my cares behind for a couple of days.