When I left the apartment this morning, I was feeling fresh, funky and warm. I was clad in my Whistles tencel trousers, a bargain grey knit top, silver ballerina shoes, hooded scarf (I tell you I wear that thing all the time), black chunky cardigan and my old teal biker jacket. I scooted across the street and into the metro, casually avoiding the dude who sells the free Metro magazine. The plan had been to meet American gal, and hit the shops in search of Christmas gifts. I was determined to be on time. And you know I was. Thing is a glitch in the instant messenging app on my iPhone meant I’d missed the news that she couldn’t make it at our usual time, until I was already hanging out on a street corner (not a regular pass-time of mine).
Rolling with the punches I thought it best to get going with today’s Five on Friday. Mother or Father Nature (let’s be PC about this) was being kind, and the sun was shining without a cloud in the sky. I decided to go walking. I think I’ve mentioned that the area around Paris Opera, isn’t the cheapest, so I pointed myself in the general direction of Les Halles. I love taking roads I’ve never taken before, and finding new areas. Today I found the Rue Montorgueil. It’s a charming road, filled with loads of specialty food stores. There was a chocolate store every few metres which definitely had my mouth watering. At the end of the Rue Montorgueil is Les Halles. I think it’s the fastest route to Les Halles on foot I’ve found so far.
Les Halles was busy as usual. It was also a bit depressing bearing in mind the sunny skies outside. Even though the sun was out, it was COLD! If you remember I’ve mentioned that Les Halles is not my prefered shopping centre, so I mostly chose it for heat, and convenience. I only had a few hours before I was to meet up with American Gal (at our new time), and I didn’t want to bore her with my weekly bargain hunt.
I hit a huge number of shops today. A few areas in the Les Halles are full of shops with lower prices. I found items under €5 in about half of them. There were also a lot of distractions. Such as shoes, and boots and bags. In my opinion there was a real shortage of sale signs, which certainly makes finding things under €5 much more difficult.
Shops I scoped out today include Bershka, Mango, H&M, Moa, Zara, Camaieu and New Look. I found belts, tanks, printed tees, gloves and scarves all under €5. I could have taken any of these. I was particularly tempted by a belt in Bershka, but as they didn’t have my size in the colours I prefered, I passed on that. Mango had basic tanks in a few different colours. I decided for the purpose of this exercise they were neither needed at this time of year, or that interesting.
In the end I settled on a pair of LEG-warmers from H&M (not to be confused with my recent acquisition of ARM-warmers from Topshop). I was a bit reluctant to begin with, mostly because my Five on Friday last week was also from H&M. They were, however, the item that I preferred the most today. What impressed me the most about these leg-warmers is how long they were. These are LONG leg-warmers. I’ve previously only seen this kind of length in Dance wear, and then the price is much more elevated than the €4.95 I paid. For a while now I’ve been contemplating buying Dance leg-warmers so that I can wear shorter skirts or shorts in winter, and not totally freeze.
After my purchase I took yet another route back to my meeting point. I took Rue Montmartre. Along this road I discovered a very interesting little shop. The name escapes me just now, but it was full of treasures. The shop appeared like a thrift store, lots of colours, textures and patterns. All the clothes were on those dry cleaners’ coat hangers that say “We Heart Our Customers” and shoes were in baskets or on shelves anywhere that wasn’t housing a clothing rail. The clothes and shoes were all new, and not necessarily the cheapest, but it was more the presentation of the store, and the individuality of the garments and accessories which appealed to me. I’ll definitely be going back to have a better look around. They had some lovely ballerina shoes, which I overheard the shop assistant explaining that they came from Italy.
The rest of the afternoon was spent in good company. We drooled over Haute Couture, and swooned over shoes. We got the good treatment in Tiffany’s and I was given an education in Lancôme. American Gal is the Lancôme guru, and she surprised me with my very own moisturiser (naughty Girl). I even got free samples in Lancôme thanks to the guru. We love samples!
I arrived home much later than planned, and definitely less fresh than when I left. But I was a good day. I’d also lost the good light, so leg-warmer photos will be added tomorrow.