Paris: Pale and Pastel
Pastels. Everywhere pastels. That was the overwhelming theme at the Maison et Objet Trade Fair on in full force through the 26th of January at the Parc des Expositions – Paris Nord Villepinte (but don’t be fooled by exiting the RER B at “Villepinte” — that’s one stop too soon).
I go almost every season (twice a year — the next one is September 2-6, 2016) with our designer, Martine di Mattéo, who I follow like a puppy dog as she goes from stand to stand with a list of things for which she’s searching on behalf of our clients. If you go with no purpose, you will be overwhelmed by the selection of product, almost (but not quite) like being in the Grand Bazaar in Istanbul not knowing which aisle to take or which seller to approach.
This visit was a new experience thanks to a new floor plan organized by “spirit,” designed to better distribute the products by “Luxury, Design and Interior Decoration, Maison, and Objet.” The stands we normally visit had taken new spots — not easy, simple or inexpensive for the vendors, and a bit disorienting for us — reminiscent of navigating the BHV which seems to change its floor plan with the blink of an eye.
Even if you are not in the market for purchasing anything at all (much like me), it’s still a great way to see what are the trends in home design, and fascinating to see the differences between the various countries represented.
This show, whether French, Italian or Scandinavian, the overwhelming theme was PASTELS. One year everything was gold or silver. This year — pastels. Pale blues, greens, pinks, soft whites, grays…you name it, as long as it was pale and pastel.
It’s lovely and it’s easy to live with for most, although not at all my personal style. I NEED to be surrounded by bright color accompanied by black black and white white in geometric patterns. If one year the theme would resemble a Kandinsky painting, I’d feel right at home. But pastels? Help! I’d be bored to tears…hence my constant complaining about Paris’ color of “greige” taking over the city. In fact, my courtyard recently underwent a “ravalement” (refurbishing) and now all the doors to the various stairwells are “greige,” rather than the classic burgundy they had been for at least a century (or more).
Faux animals were everywhere, too, although not pastel…large, stuffed and moving, looking too much like the real things to be true. There were a few dogs I would have readily taken home — no having to walk them, feed them, take them to the vet — just pet them and talk to them. Perfect. (The big bear I’d leave behind.)
Martine di Mattéo has been working with us since she first graduated interior design school so many years ago we’ve lost count. She is the driving force behind all of our beautiful and luxurious apartments. Her mark is undeniable for being elegant, tasteful, comfortable, warm, yet never boring. She has an amazing ability to coordinate the elements, mix and match fabrics and colors like no one I have ever known. Our clients have loved her and our guests have loved her touch.
Talent like this doesn’t come cheaply, but it doesn’t come along often, either. And very few have her innate ability to transform a box into a jewel. So, tagging along with her at Maison et Objet is a treat and a true learning experience. Each season, it is an excursion to be treasured, pastel or not.
A la prochaine…
The Adrian Leeds Group
P.S. We will be filming another House Hunters International this coming April on the Riviera! I am seeking properties in which we can film that are approximately 30 to 40 square meters, studio or one bedroom, value of about 300,000€ to 350,000€, located between Nice and Menton, with a balcony and preferably a great view. If you have a property fitting this description and would welcome it being filmed for TV (about 3-4 hours with a small crew), please email me immediately at [email protected]