Richard Nahem, an ex-New Yorker living in Paris, leads private insider tours showing visitors the Paris most of them never see on their own (www.eyepreferparistours.com), and also writes a popular insider's blog www.eyepreferparis.com.
One of the great things about Paris, one of the best shopping capitals in the world, is that it is one of the few large cities that still has small, individually-owned boutiques where things are customized or handmade. Here are two unique boutiques tucked away on the cobble-stoned streets of the Marais, the most fashionable and trendsetting district in Paris.
Stefan Mottay, owner of the skincare boutique Canzi, has a fresh new concept for skincare: he mixes his own cosmetics, sometimes right in front of you. Whether it's a facial mask of red and green clay from Provence or a facial balm made with over 1,000 crushed rose petals from Turkey, the ingredients are the purest, most organic available. The special and rare ingredients from all over the globe include pure plant powders, rose petals, vegetable oil, olive oil, lavender, rosemary and calendula, to name a few.
When you walk into the shop, you are wonderfully intoxicated by the aromatherapy and the sleek, modern interior of white Formica counters with test tubes and chemical beakers gives it a laboratory feel. On one side of the shop is the full Canzi line of cleansers, masks, moisturizers, body scrubs, and perfumes and on the other is a carefully selected line of only the best organic cosmetics including Dr. Hauschka, Weleda, Phyts, and small luxury lines like Douces Angevines, Alma Carmel, and Jean Christophe. After Stefan finishes with you, you will smell like a rose and the rest of the herb and flower garden.
How many times have you found the perfect garment in a shop and have joked (or maybe some of you have been serious) and said "I'll take it in every color?" Well, at 180 Grammes you could walk away with over 100 of them. The new shop will custom color any garment they sell in over 100 different dyes. A slouchy cotton sweater in #11 blue lagoon, a linen blazer in #3 charcoal grey, a long silk scarf in #22 paradise pink, a t-shirt made of bamboo fiber in #61 amethyst purple… you get the idea.
Artist and designer Nicolas Chevallier, who also did a stint at L’Oreal as a graphic designer and designed action figures for Toy2r, created the brilliant concept store.
The spacious shop, with hardwood floors, black metal industrial furniture and rolling racks, is dotted with numbered glass jars of the brilliant pigments. The full line of men’s, women’s, and children’s clothing, accessories, customized furniture, and acrylic wall art is available.
Feeling blue can be a positive thing at 180 grammes.
2-4 rue Ferdinand Duval, 4th arr.
Tel. 01 42 78 09 37
Open Tuesday- Sunday 11 a.m.-7 p.m.
15 rue des Tournelles, 4th arr.
Tel. 01 42 77 62 16
Open Monday-Saturday 11 a.m.-8 p.m., Sunday 2 p.m.-7 p.m.