Paris Sewing Shopping


When my man and I go to France, people always ask the same thing, "Oh, do you eat out every night and do loads of shopping?" And it usually breaks their hearts when we say, "No!" Let's face it, I'm not made of money and paying rent in two places and buying a flight overseas is expensive. I save for it all year, but it's not an invitation to live the high life, though that be awesome!

While we're there we live much as we do in Los Angeles; we shop at the market and grocery stores, we cook at home, we find all the great free/cheap things to do, and then indulge a little bit here and there. Besides, as a vegetarian, eating out in France gets boring. There's only so much cheese a girl can eat!

But even with a tight budget and only a carry-on bag, somehow I do manage to come home with a few goodies, which are usually sewing or fashion related, along with a touristy mug and postcards. And though I mentioned in this post that I only bought fabric for my Derby Dress, I did end up going back for another piece for a project to-be-determined later. I just couldn't deal with coming home with only a finished garment and not something for the future. So back I went!

Below are all my sewing goodies I picked up for me and for gifts, as well as a few fashion related items. It was hard to narrow down my choices when faced with such amazing high-quality treats in a city like Paris, but I'm really happy with what I brought home. Okay, here we go...


First up, fabric! This is another gorgeous soft cotton lawn print from La Droguerie, where my Derby Dress fabric was bought. Both were unlabeled and have no brand markings in the selvages, so I don't know the sources for either, but I'd never seen them before. They are both about 60" wide and are gorgeously drapey. I am pretty sure that this new print will be saved for my fall pattern!


There's no shortage of amazing buttons to be found in Paris. Between sewing shops, flea markets, and thrift stores, you can find buttons in every shape, color, size, and material. I picked up these goodies above at a flea market for a total score. I have no plans for them yet, but I loved the detailing and think they'll go with loads of colors.



I also wanted to get some buttons for my ladies at Sew L.A. who were holding down the fort while I was off on holiday. I found all these above at Ultramod and love them. The black buttons are carved, revealing the cream underneath. The blue and yellow buttons are curved like little bowls and have adorable crosshatching on the underside. I love these and hope my ladies do too!


On the last day of our trip, I popped into a tiny vintage shop in the Saint-Paul area and found these cards of buttons. They had them in every size and color and I just had to pick up a card for myself and one for each my Sew L.A. gals too. They were a great price despite being on their original cards, which usually jumps the price way up. I kept the light blue buttons for myself.


When we were at a local flea market, we spotted a used book sale in a neighboring park where I found some vintage fashion magazines. Books? Who needs books when there are vintage fashion magazines! We had seen many like this at a local shop which were about ten times the price, so I knew when I saw them that I totally scored! I picked up three copies of Modes & Travaux, two from 1961 and one from 1966, as well as a gorgeous copy of Marie Claire from 1938, which I bought for the cover alone. I think I'm going to frame it and hang it as art in my home. I love it! 


Oh, and I'll be doing some scanning of the insides of these goodies for future blog posts too! So you can see the articles, tutorials, and ads inside. Some are so amazing!


Lastly I picked up a couple of cute postcards. One is just a super cute drawing of vintage fashions with pattern markings in the background, but I had to have it because it has my name on it! Literally! The other is a postcard of a Vogue cover from 1952. I love that on every corner in Paris are postcards of things like vintage Vogue magazine covers. It takes tremendous control to not get more!