I have a couple more posts from my recent Paris trip to share with you before I get back to writing about stenciling and design inspiration. Rachel and I had very few 'Must do's' planned for our trip. One involved a museum and the others involved desserts. The only plan that came to fruition was macarons from Laduree. I tried to get to Laduree two years ago with my friend Jacqui. "I swear it was here", I wailed as we trekked for the umpteenth time from The Madeleine. "It must have moved!" We were on the wrong street.
When I visited with friend Sabina we were working and when we were not at work, Laduree was closed. I took my Mum there but the queue was longer than our holiday. Rachel and I accidently timed it right, too late for the coffee crowd, too early for lunch. We decided that the brunch option was to have truffle creme ommelette and macarons.
We were in no hurry so spent the time admiring the murals, the gilded ceilings (photo from the Laduree site),
We listened to several conversations guessing much of the content and we deciphered the menu. I had Marie Antionette tea, a smokey, fruit peel based beverage which was fab to start with, but would have benefitted from a top up of hot water soon after. Rachel drank Earl Grey tea. Earl Grey came from Northumberland, his home was not far from mine. Much care was taken with the choice of macaron. Rachel went for chocolate as she was not sure whether she would like macarons and chocolate was a safe bet. I never met a cake that I did not get on with, so chose rose petal and raspberry. In my excitment I shook the camera, so I apologize for the fuzzy macaron, but you get the idea. I bought a gift box full of mini macs to share with my relatives back at the apartment. My fave flavour was lily of the valley, a depiction of the flower was embossed on the gift box at the head of this post. It is a tradition in France to give loved ones lily of the valley on May 1st. I am afraid I got over excited about the confectionary again and forgot to photograph the contents for you so I have borrowed this image from Laduree's website.
If ever you are in Paris, then I certainly recommend you take an hour or so for tea at Laduree. It is the perfect place to take a bit of a breather. They have a few shops. We were at the original one on rue Royale. There is also one on the Champs Elysees. Or how about this one on rue Bonaparte. Isn't the fabric wonderful?
You can pick up decorating inspiration anywhere.
If you are not in Paris, but fancy the experience anyway, there is always Laduree at Harrods in London which has an equally sumptuous decor:
Tres Moulin Rouge, n'est ce que pas? Both those effects could be created with some tone on tone stencilling. Photos from the Laduree site.
Finally, I will take this oportunity to tell you that artist and blogger Paris Breakfasts ( I mentioned her a couple a few posts ago) has now got a range of product for sale featuring her paintings and photography. I found it via Designers Block. Fancy a macaron mouse-mat?? I do. Whilst perusing the merchandise, I saw that she had a photo of L'Afrique Hot Chocolate from Angelinas. To drink one of these molten chocolate and chantilly cream conconctions had been top of our list of 'must do's'. It remains undone..... until next time. Helen