Christmas (Window) Shopping in Paris


paris christmas
As some may have noticed, posting has been a bit less frequent than usual, because like most, I've been completely immersed in preparations for the holiday season. Other than running around trying to find gifts (and completely failing), decorating every inch of the apartment and hunting down the perfect Christmas tree, I'm also set to do even more traveling starting next week when we head to London, then Helsinki, which will be a short stop-over on the way to Hong Kong - where we will ultimately be spending Christmas and New Years with my parents. I'll be blogging about all of that, so stay tuned for more international shopping (and other) adventures. Until then, I thought I'd share the beauty that is Christmas in Paris, especially with regard to the tempting and creative festive windows.

The best of these in my opinion tend to come from luxury department store Printemps, which likes to provide kids and adults with entertaining animated windows. The main attractions are the four windows featuring dancing marionettes, courtesy of Dior and Chanel, who've designed two windows each. The theme - in line with Chanel's current obsession, is a Russian Christmas. All images can be enlarged by clicking on them.

printemps christmas windows dior parisDior par Victoire de Castellane - Dior's jewelry designer (top image: Le Journal des Vitrines)

printemps christmas window chanel parisLa Princesse Nadedjda par Chanel (top image: Le Journal des Vitrines). The princess was a close friend of Coco Chanel and the dolls are wearing outfits form the Paris-Moscow collection. I'm told even the knickers are Chanel...

printemps christmas windows dior parisDiorischka par Christian Dior.

printemps christmas windows chanel parisprintemps christmas windows chanel parisLe grand duc Dimitri par Chanel (top images: Le Journal des Vitrines).

I'd definitely also check out this short video clip, which shows the dolls in action so you get an idea of how adorable they actually are...

(Video courtesy of the amazing Le Journal des Vitrines).

The Russian theme could also be found in-store, with Chanel and Dior creating larger-than-life Russian dolls which were over 3 storeys high:

printemps christmas windows parisTop: Chanel. Bottom: Dior.

And here also some of Printemps' static windows:

printemps christmas windows parisDecor and clothing courtesy of Christofle, Baccarat, Matthew Williamson, Valentino.

printemps christmas window chanel parisAnother Chanel window.

printemps christmas window dior parisAnother Dior window.

printemps christmas window kenzo parisA window by Kenzo which included some impressive taxidermy (I want the bear...).

Below you'll find just a small selection of my other favorite Christmas windows. Surprisingly many stores have opted not to create festive displays at all. As usual, Lanvin windows will get a separate post.

repetto store window parisRepetto's Swan Lake tribute. I want to be a ballerina again...

manoush store window parisA winter wonderland at Manoush.

laduree parisA lovely variation of a Christmas tree... made out of macarons at Ladurée. The golden boxes and macarons are the Marni edition of the sweet treats.

hermes paris store frontThe Hermès windows gave me a headache, but I love the hot-air balloons they put up, which took over a day to install.

The only dangerous thing about (window) shopping in Paris, is that unlike the U.S., the sale season only begins after Christmas, which means if you're tempted to buy anything now, you're still going to pay full-price. But as we all know, Christmas is also the season for sample sales, or as Parisians prefer to call it 'private sales', considering most of these events are invite-only. I've been to almost a dozen of these things in the past few weeks, ranging from Chloé (they've had five sales in the past three weeks alone.... are they in trouble?), Nina Ricci and Vanessa Bruno to virtually every French high-street brand such as A.P.C. or Antik Batik. In some cases pre-sales have begun as well, but like private sales, they are open only to loyal customers and a select clientele.

la grande braderie de la mode parisTop: Shoes and designer gear at La Grande Braderie de la Mode. Lower left: chaos at the Vanessa Bruno sale. Lower right: a surprisingly organized Chloé sale.

My favorite so far has been a public event though: La Grande Braderie de la Mode is a bi-annual sample sale where all the designer goods have been donated by either the fashion houses themselves or department stores, stylists, magazines and anyone else who has stuff they need to unload. All proceeds from sales go to 'AIDES', a non-profit organization benefiting those suffering from either AIDS or Hepatitis diseases. It's probably one of the few times you can really justify giving in to impulse buys as you'll know your money will be going towards charity. So I happily got me some Balenciaga 70% off retail, even though I still have no idea when I'll get to wear whatever I bought. All items are new (either samples or overstock) with goodies including YSL Rive Gauche skirts and jackets (in the 40 EUR range), Isabel Marant tops (40 EUR), YSL and Manolo Blahnik shoes (70 EUR) and the priciest items I saw were dresses by Cerruti, Kriss van Assche and Tsumori Chisato (around 200-300 EUR) - which is still over 50% off what you'd normally pay.

And if you really do get sick of shopping, do what I do... head over to one of the lovely markets to peruse the stalls filled with crafts and culinary treats, while admiring the pretty lights strung across the trees...

place de la concorde christmas paris

78 comments:

  1. oh my goodness!! how fun that must have been ~~

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  2. OMG! What a FESTIVE and MAGICAL post! I luv the Christmas window displays, these in Paris are solely Gorgeous! My favorite has to be the Swan Lake display because I LUV ballet sooo much!
    p.s. LUCKY YOU, getting to travel to such wonderful places beginning next week, have a ton of FABULOUS FUN!:))
    xoxox,
    Gerri

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  3. Wow, simply stunning. I would love to see Paris at Christmas time...and I just assumed there is no such thing as a sale in Paris! :) Maybe one day I will afford to shop there.... Thanks for these gorgeous photos and that last one is especially beautiful.

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  4. Stunning post, darling!
    Paris is so gorgeous and festive!

    xoxox,
    CC

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  5. wow, these are the most beautiful pictures!
    I have always wanted to go to paris in the summer but after seeing these pictures i think i may have changed my mind and now want to go in winter, it just looks so christmassy and exciting!

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  6. What a beautiful "christmas" shopping post.
    Noel in Paris...

    What I love the most is Repetto's Swan Lake tribute and the Chanel russian dolls, Hermes store front... everything is for sure twinkling-glittery beautiful!

    The sample sale by "La Grande Braderie de la Mode" seems to be the perfect place for amazing fashion treasures!!!

    Have a beautiful day and enjoy the christmas season in Paris... you lucky girl ;)

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  7. Amazing Christamspost, darling Haute-Shopper! YAY for meeeee! I neeeeed a Chanel Russian doll, please....please...Santa :-))))

    Please don't forget to enter the Hoolala lucky bag giveaway!

    X♥X♥

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  8. I love these windows :)
    So magic ! Specially for christmas!

    Kisses

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  9. This is such an incredible post. I love all the photos. These all look so magical and beautiful. Thank you for sharing these with us. I do hope you will have a great holiday season. You definitely are going to be all over the place.

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  10. Wow I love pARIS
    i WISHED I could be shopping there right now.
    -The Trendy Fashionista
    http://thetrendyfashionista.blogspot.com

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  11. Wow! It must be great to be in Paris, christmas time.
    Have fun!
    X, fashionnerdic.

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  12. WOW.

    those window scenes just blew my mind! it's the best i've ever seen! how do you shop with so much distraction?! it's like disneyland!

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  13. Wow I love your window photos. I want to be in Paris now, after reading this post!

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  14. haha, thanks girl;) im glad you liked the video!

    and wow, paris is BREATHTAKING. thoroughly enjoyed scrolling through the wonderful pics--those russian dolls are insaneeee.

    xx raez

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  15. This is gorgeous! OMG so jealous!!!!! Basically a dream come true!! Why is this making me cry? PMS.

    I need a cookie.

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  16. answer: or a bigger bag as a hanged pocket (for a little bag accessory.) hihi! What do you think?


    X♥X♥

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  17. GASP! it all looks so amazing! just magical and fantastical! love it! i can't even pick a favorite, although that swan lake tribute is adorable!

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  18. Oh man, you are making me miss Paris so much! That was the best and most beautiful place to be for Christmas! I miss those wonderful Christmas markets, too!!

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  19. This is amazing! Paris is normally magical, but it seems 10x more magical here during the holidays. I really wish I could see it in person!

    ---
    Want a chance to win a gold Orient watch? Then enter part 2 of Being High Maintenance, not Bitchy's Holiday Giveaway Bonanza! http://highmaintenancewoman.blogspot.com/2009/12/winner-of-part-1-part-2-of-holiday.html

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  20. Oh, I so wish there were window displays like that out here in Southern California. They're absolutely stunning! :)

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  21. Sounds so incredibly amazing.

    Thanks again for your help with my guest lecture -- I just wrote a little post about it. http://www.the-anthology.com/2009/12/art-institute/

    *Kelsey

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  22. I'm in love with the oversized Russian dolls. My mom had some for me to play with when I was a toddler and I could play with them for hours. I was obsessed with the teeniest one of course.

    Seeing the dolls in action made me feel (somewhat) like I was there, thank you, love!

    I know there's so much to do this time of year. And before we know it it's over in a flash! Miss you!

    Ooh, wear the Balenciaga at home. Candlelit dinner if you have to - it must be worn :)

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  23. My, I miss there.... It was exactly the same time we were there last year... oh, I remember that blue little lights decorated on the tree.

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  24. This is such a great post! Christmas in Paris must be amazing!

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  25. ahhhhh
    I'm so glad you made a post on Paris ! especially at this time of the year !
    Your post is just PERFECT !
    Bravo*°*°*
    (My crush on Hermès)
    Have a wonderful week-end*°*°*

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  26. I was there 2 weeks ago, the christmas decorations are stunning!!!

    Great post.

    Throwing up on myslf almost happened after the party - I was good enough to keep it all in!

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  27. wish the windows where i live were even half as kickass!!!!!!!

    myglitteringcreation.blogspot.com

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  28. I wish I was in Paris right this moment!!! Argh! I love shopping in Paris. I would have gone crazy in Vanessa Bruno as well as La Grande Braderie de la Mode!! I would die to go to Repetto as well! Oooh, Christmas shopping in Paris is dangerous. Well, so is christmas shopping in HK. When I lived in the Philippines, we always went to HK for the holiday season because it was soooo much fun shopping and watching the lights og the city. I used to take the Star Ferry back and forth just to look at the beautiful, twinkling lights of the city. Have a safe and fun trip! Can't wait to see what you'll buy, or at least window-shop for--LOL!

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  29. must be fun shopping there! those pictures make me wish Christmas would just come earlier! ;)

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  30. the clip made me :)

    thanks for this awesome post. unifem's doing a similar thing here. a chanel suit for S$300. good deal? i can only contribute in other ways.

    http://wottoncool.wordpress.com/2009/12/09/busy-as-a-bee/

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  31. I love looking at Christmas windows!!!!!!! All these windows are so amazing!

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  32. Incredible post, love the pictures!=)

    Response: Thanks.=) Friis makes bags, shoes, jewellery, accessories and underwear.=)

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  33. A Russian winter wonderland. What a magical theme!

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  34. So jealous these photos are gorgeous!
    Love the Chanel Russian Doll bags and of course that fabulous tutu :D
    Amazing post
    xx

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  35. It's time for Chritsmas, YUP YUP!

    My bloglovin doesn't work!!! :(

    mwas!!

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  36. oh i really do think you are in the best city for window shopping. i'm so envious of all of your travelling. looking forward to seeing the world through your eyes :)

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  37. Such a beautiful Christmasy post! Those windows are ADORABLE!!! x

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  38. Aw, this is adorable Christmasy :)

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  39. I wish we had more events like that in Edinburgh. It must be great if you can purchase nice, good quality designer clothes for such bargain prices :) And btw thanks for stopping by at my blog. I am glad you liked it :)

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  40. And of course I'm obsessed with the Chanel one-so amazing! I agree that Pre-Fall hasn't been stellar but there were some good looks here and there. xoxox

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  41. Hi there-your photos are just stunning, thanks so much for sharing, it must be wonderful to see it all for real!! Have a great weekend!

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  42. You're a great guide, thank you for the soul food! I'm going to post about it tonite, would you mind if i used a couple shots? Happy globe trotting!

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  43. omgg I want to ride on that giant ferris wheel! And oooh all the window decos are STUNNING. they remind me of the nutcracker and totally get me into the christmas mood :D hehe yeah the pic of me was from maybe 4 years ago... so I guess it's good to look different ... like more ... mature right!??! HAHAHA I wish!

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  44. I would LOVE to go Christmas shopping in Paris!! What a fabulous life you lead. ;)

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  45. Bonsoir chèrie! Wow....that was totally magical, beautiful, cool, professionally presented; what can I say, I am so honored that you see fit to come visit me!!! I just loved that youtube clip and all the magic of Paris's windows. I was in France for three months several years ago and spent only 8 days in Paris. That was simply not enough time to soak in all the chic. Thank you for inviting me to visit with you. BONNE FÊTE `A VOUS ET VOTRE AMOUR!!!! Anita

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  46. oh wow, amazing! I wish we had shop windows like these :) I am totally with you about winter blues... I am still not in the mood. I hope it's going to change. I wish I had more time for myself...
    have a lovely weekend, darling!
    xoxo

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  47. I LOVE christmas window displays :)
    Ive loved looking through and reading your blog, found it very inspiring :) follow me on www.clashingtime.blogspot.com if you please <3

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  48. When I went to Paris last year, I remembering amazed at their shop window displays. They were works of art!

    Have you seen the lingerie giveaway I'm having on my blog? I'd love for you to enter! :-)

    http://stockingsaddict.blogspot.com

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  49. love it darling
    so gorgeous, love the blog as always
    thanks for sharing
    and thanks for the sweet comments

    -cma
    check out my blog @
    cosmicaroline.blogspot.com

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  50. How could we ever get sick of shopping?
    Thank you Haute-Shopper for sharing the magnificent Paris shop windows. I loved them all especially the Chanel and Dior displays.
    Must be such an exciting place to see all the Christmas lights there.

    Happy weekend and much luck with your Christmas preparations.
    Hugs
    Carolyn

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  51. Gosh i love it i so want to go to paris..Great pics and cool blog ;)

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  52. Thanks so much for the video! I used to decorate the windows for Williams-Sonoma...back when you could be creative. I miss it. These were amazing and the Dior windows...I'm at a loss for words. Except all those I just typed~

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  53. Loved reading about Christmas in Paris- made me feel like I was there window gazing with you! My favorite window was the Le grand duc Dimitri par Chanel with the rockers! The video of them rocking out was too cute- made me smile- love their hair too! Yay for all of the sample sales- I love Antik Batik! What did you get from Balenciaga? And Christimas & New Year's in Hong Kong sounds like super fun! Hope you have a great weekend! xo, Mel

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  54. You truly post some beautiful pics everytime. Just have a great eye....and a very steady hand:) I will be interested to see some of your pics from Hong Kong!

    Found you tree yet? We put a VERY little one up, as we have less space we are this year. It works though, and looks better than I thought...so determined to put a tree up, and so glad we did! Happy Festive Holidays to you!

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  55. Oh one of the very best things about Christmas are the shop windows. Amazing pictures! I would love to have seen these live.
    Regards
    Nathalie

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  56. ooh these are so cool! i love seeing store windows. and because they're in paris, it's even better =)

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  57. Ah, Christmas makes me ridiculously happy like a five year old girl!
    XOXOX
    Libby
    http://fashionconfectionairy.weebly.com

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  58. oh, what wouldn't i give to go shop in paris right now???!!!

    http://herarmoire.blogspot.com

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  59. This is all just so breathtaking and beautiful. Reading this post was a treat!
    -Marz

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  60. I wonder if you'll be in Helsinki at the same time with me Dec 19-22? That would be so cool to get a chance to meet, even if just quickly!

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  61. It's truly a magical place...for a moment I was there with you. Thanks for sharing this...

    Hope you have a lovely weekend, cheers: Evi

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  62. Oh love the pictures how beautiful and great video I would love to go to Paris amazing
    http://pinacoladakisses.blogspot.com/

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  63. Great post! Going shopping in Paris for the Christmas is one of my dreams, wow!!!

    xxxxx

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  64. Absolutely gorgeous photos! Thanks so much for sharing what it's like Christmas shopping in Paris... gosh that almost sounds too good to be true. I would love to do that someday. The Chanel and Dior window displays are amazing!

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  65. -Ogles and jaw drops- I need to go to Paris. Now. Wah =( It blows NYC out. of. the. waterrr.
    And have fun on your trips! I wish I was in your shoes and could travel!!

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  66. How beautiful! So much nicer than our boring storefronts here in NYC... at least the ones I've seen so far. The Repetto window is (of course) my favorite. :)

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  67. Every year, Christmas rolls around and I miss Paris. Paris at Christmastime is just magical. My personal favorite is Galleries Lafayette but the Printemps window displays are pretty spectacular. I'm dying to know though - what Balenciaga item did you purchase??? You can't tease a girl like that! I need to know :)

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  68. Oh wow, Victoire going Russia... >___________>

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  69. omg im so jealous! sounds like a perfect trip :)

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  70. wow, to be in paris for the holidays...how i wish. you always have the most beautiful pictures i love it all. i want that macaroon christmas tree. and i am looking forward to your lanvin post.

    www.amoreeggrorr.blogspot.com

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  71. What a spectacular, visual treat. Images that dreams are made of. I wish you a fabulous holiday in Hong Kong and safe travels to you along the way. Such a wonderful time to be out and taking in all the beauty. Ho..ho..ho xoxo

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  72. ahh these photos make me melt. i cannot wait for christmas shopping. your posts never fail to impress me, always something new to adore. paris for the holidays ... did i mention how i jealous i am ??

    xx lue

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  73. It is such an amazing post!And pictures and spirit f it!!! First of all, I had no idea that there is n pre Christmas sale in Paris! Here, In New York, you can find amazing deals on items and fantastic sales if you go shopping 2-3 days before Christmas.Good thing I do not live in Paris otherwise I could easily overspent many times over:-). Secondly, I just posted a new post with wonderful pictures of window displays in New York :-) I suppse great minds think alike:-) I wish you great trip and can not wait to read more about new discoveries while you travelling. Have a very wonderful Monday.

    P.S. It was really difficult to plan shopping while I was in Paris. I never had any idea when I would have some free time and had to improvise on the spot. It turned out to be great because I really enjoyed every sopping experience like shopping in Annick Goutal!Thank you for your advie. Next time I will know better where to go for great deals in Paris :-)

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  74. My dear friend!!

    I only wish I could trip abroad this X-mas...it is so amazing!!!
    I am glad to see you had a great time in Italy, everybody love that country!

    Thanks so much, always, for being around, your blog is one of my faves!

    Many kisses and hugs,

    Kira

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  75. I love the Printemps dolls. I've never visited Paris in the winter time but
    I may just have to.

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