My pregnancy essentials

Being pregnant in Paris and France can be quite daunting when you’re not at all familiar with the health care system or which resources are available to you. Even finding normal, or rather, “Anglo” pregnancy items can be a challenge. 11 months later with a healthy and gorgeous baby in our lives, I’m happy to share my 7 pregnancy essentials with you!

 

1. My morning sickness wasn’t terrible but it was still very present. As long as I was kept fed I seemed to be ok. A friend visiting from London put together a pregnancy kit for me and these cookies were in them — apparently ginger is a wonderful remedy to morning sickness? All I know is these cookies helped me get through several waves or nausea and for that I will be eternally grateful!

Sold in Paris at W.H. Smith, 248 rue de Rivoli, 75001.

 

2. Another ginger-y item that saved the day! Especially since it’s caffeine free. I bought box loads of these at a time and always had sachets in my handbag for whenever I was out for tea with friends.

Sold at La Grande Epicerie du Bon Marché, 38 rue de Sèvres, 75007, Paris.

 

3. I will be eternally grateful to my friend Zack for my Snoogle Total Body Pillow. Near the beginning of my pregnancy I wasn’t sure I would be able to exclusively sleep on my left side as recommended for the baby (I’d trained myself to be a back sleeper years ago — less wrinkles!) so I knew I had to get some kind of body pillow. Unfortunately it seemed almost  impossible to find in France so mine came from BuyBuyBaby in Manhatten. It’s, without a doubt, the best pregnancy item I bought or received. I love, L-O-V-E, my Snoogle. Like sleeping on a cloud!

 

4. My Moleskine red journal was a timely gift during Paris Fashion Week in January. Although I wish I had used it more, the stories and moments that I did recount during my pregnancy are precious. I can’t wait to relive them in the years to come.

 

5. As I mentioned, navigating the French healthcare system was at times totally bewildering. Luckily a friend of mine had given me a copy of Pamela Druckerman’s French Children Don’t Throw Food – an excellent read in itself, but also referred to Message, an organization for English-speaking families in Paris. Their forums were a wealth of information for the gazillion questions I had and they also publish an excellent guide, the ABCs of Parenting in Paris.

 

6. After reading Ina May Gaskin’s Guide To Childbirth and seeing The Business of Being Born I was absolutely positive that I wanted a natural birth. I discovered Hypnobirthing through the blog The Healthy Tipping Point and was intrigued by the idea of a painless natural birth. After visiting their site I discovered that they had a practitioner in Paris, Elizabeth Echlin. My husband and I took three sessions with Elizabeth, which were great for releasing fears and learning visualization and breathing techniques. Without these sessions I don’t know whether I would have had the brilliant birth that I did, all natural, with our DD arriving one and a half hours after we arrived at the hospital. I can’t recommend these sessions enough!

 

7. On a more superficial note, I discovered BB creams during my pregnancy and when I was completely exhausted with dark circles under my eyes and no energy to even think about make up, this cream was a lifesaver! Throughout my pregnancy everyone kept complementing me on my skin, little did they know it was thanks to a miracle tube from Bobbi Brown.

Bobbi Brown BB Cream SPF 35

 

*Note* I didn’t include clothing or accessories in this list as I didn’t really add much to my wardrobe, except some leggings and camisoles. In fact I was decidedly “unfashion” about this pregnancy. If you have any pregnancy essentials yourselves, I would love to hear them! I may even adopt a few when pregnancy number two comes along (in the future!) ;-)

Now that I’m a mother

© Mrs. Châtelaine

Our little bundle of joy was born almost two months ago and we couldn’t be happier! She’s the reason this blog has been so stark since Spring, but I’m going to remedy that from now on and will be including lots of posts for you lucky future mammas and fellow new mothers too! So stay tuned!

Shoe of the Day: Sergio Rossi SS13

© Sergio Rossi

Pure gorgeousness from the Sergio Rossi Spring Summer 2013 collection, currently on sale at Moda Operandi. Having major shoe love at first sight: “hello beauties, step into my closet!”

Who was at the Anna Dello Russo for H&M party?

Anna Dello Russo for H&M © H&M

Anna Dello Russo © H&M

Peter Dundas and Poppy Delevigne © H&M

Isabeli Fontana wearing AdR at H&M © H&M

Constance Jablonski © H&M

Toni Garrn and Karlie Kloss, wearing AdR at H&M © H&M

Rodger Berman and Rachel Zoe © H&M

Olivier Theyskens © H&M

Margareta van den Bosch and Anna Dello Russo © H&M

Liya Kebede © H&M

Jefferson Hack and Hamish Bowles © H&M

A performance by Azealia Banks © H&M

The Queen of Fashionable Excess, Anna Dello Russo, has finally tried her hand at designing, with a partnership with H&M. The fabulous launch event took place during Paris Fashion Week (bien sûr!) and the collection is sure to be a sparkly hit!

Braquenie Wallpaper preview at Pierre Frey Paris

The Maison Pierre Frey welcomed journalists in Paris this week to preview their new Spring 2012 wallpaper collection for label Braquenie. Prints are classic Pierre Frey — oh so French — do you like?

Images courtesy of Pierre Frey

Cate Blanchett in Paris for Big and Small

Image © Lisa Tomasetti 2011

Last night the hubby and I attended a performance of Cate Blanchett’s Big and Small, which is on tour through Europe and currently performing at the Théâtre de la Ville. We were blown away by Cate’s performance: so big *and* so small, in this complex and thought provoking piece about the search for human connection.

The play performs until April 8th in Paris — if you’re a Cate fan, I won’t say the name of the hotel she’s staying at, but it’s in Saint-Germain-des-Pres, so chances are you might find spot her and family walking around taking in the sights before they head to London’s Barbicon on the next leg of their European tour. 

Cate Blanchett around Paris with husband Andrew Upton - Image via celebstyle.com

Raf Simons IS in at Dior

Image from Style.com

The Twitterverse is definitely in a tizzy today about Jil Sander heading back to her eponymous label and Raf Simons heading to Christian Dior as John Galliano’s official replacement. According to a good friend at LVMH, Raf Simons has already signed on at Dior and the announcement will be made shortly.

I interviewed Raf last year when he was Jury President for the Hyères Festival — he’s a wonderfully modest and humble person — I couldn’t be happier for him!

New John Galliano rumours… time for the John comeback?

The rumour mills are swirling…. Wagging tongues are saying that fashion designer John Galliano is in talks with the powers that be at PPR to front a new PPR-funded luxury company.

And just when the eternal PPR vs. LVMH battle seemed put to rest — will these negotiations have fashionable furs flying again? Only time will tell!

Stay tuned!

Château Baccarat — The Debate

© Baccarat/Y. Duronsoy

© Baccarat/Y. Duronsoy

We had a wine journalist friend to stay for one night in the country this weekend and she was quite excited, among other things, about an event for Château Baccarat, the new line of wine-specialized glassware by Baccarat, that she had attended earlier in the week. She was super impressed by the nose that the glassware gave to the wine but we had a mini-debate about the design of this collection.

She hadn’t given much thought to the aesthetics of the line, but I find it very cold and chemical looking. Almost too scientific — when I look at the decanter in particular, I immediately start thinking of beakers and heating things over bunsen burners.

I would be interested to hear what others think of this collection. In terms of the special wine properties, Baccarat say 1) the wine base prevents alcohols from rising too much on the inner surface of the glass. It also preserves subtle aromas and allows wines to retain their smoothness. 2) The closed angle allows for the full expression of aromas. 3) the vertical chimney is comfortable for the mouth and consolidates the aromas.

I missed going to their press launch during Maison & Objet in January so I can’t tell you how this collection would differ from the Riedel range, which are also made with crystal, and which we actually selected for our wedding list.

Anyone have any thoughts?

© Baccarat

Marc Jacobs — Louis Vuitton exhibition at Le Musée des Arts Décoratifs

Images courtesy of Louis Vuitton

Wondering what the forthcoming Marc Jacobs — Louis Vuitton exhibition will look like at the Musée des Arts Décoratifs? Here’s a little taste of what’s to come!

Images courtesy of Louis Vuitton

Images courtesy of Louis Vuitton

Images courtesy of Louis Vuitton

Images courtesy of Louis Vuitton

Images courtesy of Louis Vuitton

Images courtesy of Louis Vuitton

Images courtesy of Louis Vuitton

Images courtesy of Louis Vuitton

The exhibition will run from March 9th until September 16th 2012 and will also be accompanied by an exquisite limited edition catalogue/book published by Rizzoli (pictured below), which will be available in France from the beginning of March and worldwide in April.

See you at Les Arts Décoratifs for the exhibition!

Image courtesy of Louis Vuitton/Rizzoli/Les Arts Décoratifs

Gloria Gaynor, Grace Jones and Chaka Khan, Sister Sledge and The Pointer Sisters last night at Etam!

Etam-muse and top-model, Natalia Vodianova, sat center stage with love, Antoine Arnault. Joining the pair front row and center were Audrey Marnay, actors Mélanie Thierry, Gilles Lellouche, and Ludivine Sagnier for this rip-roaring Motown affair! The party of the night!

Back

Sorry for the prolonged absence! Finally back from vacation in paradise! More posts to come soon! xox

Image © Mrs. Châtelaine

Goodbyes

© suzanneduda

My Grandmother passed away early Sunday morning. She loved to knit and embroider so here is an image of some spools of lace. It reminds me of how attentive, loving, and caring she was — always thinking of others, always there to take care of her family. I love you Grandma and I know you are looking down on us from heaven.

A Parisian Dream in Matchbook Magazine

My collaborator and friend, Elisa Camus, and I were pleased to take part in the newest issue of Katie Armour’s Matchbook Magazine with our shoot/interview of scarf designer and all-around fabulously chic Parisienne, Ashley Ashoff. Our shoot with Ashley took place earlier this year in her apartment near the Champs de Mars. We love Matchbook Magazine and we’re very happy to be included in the same issue that also featured a cover story with Andy and Kate Spade. Chic!

Some images from our story with Ashley:

To view the whole article, view the November issue here!

Cooking with Lanvin — Le Concours de Cuisine de Lanvin Petite

Le concours de cuisine de Lanvin Petite © Lanvin

Back today from traveling and am totally charmed by the news of this contest, which hit my inbox first thing this morning. Historic fashion house, Lanvin, will be holding a mother-daughter cooking contest in honor of their first children’s clothing line: Lanvin Petite. Jeanne Lanvin and her daughter, Marguerite, are the inspiration behind the contest that will unite the best recipes for chocolate cake, with the winning recipe  selected and prepared by the executive chef at the Ecole Ritz Escoffier in the Ritz Hotel in the Place Vendôme Paris. The winning mother-daughter team will be guests of honor at an afternoon goûter/tea held by the brand on December 4th. Ooh la la, this contest is just beyond cute — we’re sure Alber Elbaz has a sweet tooth and we think mother and daughter team Salma Hayek and Valentina Pinault would be an adorable addition.

To participate, send your recipes for chocolate cake asap to: www.lanvin.com/marecette

xox

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