“If you're in Paris," read the text from one of our favorite international clients, who happened to be scanning her Instagram, "Could you please look at an apartment for me that just came on the market this morning?” I.e. Drop everything, run don’t walk and make an offer asap!
Of course we can, and we did, and within 20 minutes of walking in to a beautiful, spacious (by Parisian standards) one bedroom apartment, with a killer view of the Eiffel Tower and a gracious private balcony, we had an offer on the table with fingers crossed and the exciting feeling that we were about to land another Parisian renovation project.
Fast forward a few months and that’s exactly what happened, with the directive to transform this dated but pretty apartment into a functional but pretty home, with two bathrooms, new kitchen, new floors and all new systems. Initially we had reservations about giving up on the not so functional but pretty bones … but we realized that working with a great contractor, we could accomplish modern conveniences without sacrificing the charm of the old. And that’s what we set out to do.
We presented our client with a series of Powerpoint slides which included everything from the inspiration that we sought to achieve down to the hardware for every cabinet (which we hand carried from the USA). We had a challenging time with the plumbing fixtures, which we circumvented by keeping everything very simple and clean, complemented with some pretty tiles.
When we decided we wanted to add some molding to the walls, our contractor didn’t hesitate, and just drew them in with magic marker. And when we decided to move the kitchen from way down the hall (as is typical with Hausmann apartments) into the living room, he merely shrugged and muttered something about “la cuisine americaine.”
Fast forward another few months, and with the help of an awesome project manager on the ground, a wonderful contractor in Paris, an enthusiastic client and countless emails, phone calls, trips across the pond, internet searches, scouting trips in the U.S. and France, and some last minute shopping all over Paris to pull it all together, we completed it in time for some lucky people to spend a wonderful Christmas together in Paris. And we were able to relish the pictures of what was one of our most delightful pet projects ever.
With great pleasure, we present to you Cairanne, a pretty little jewel in the heart of Paris.
Meg kept saying, "We need another level of Dec Acc" (our shorcut for decorative accessory, or the effortless looking "je ne sais quoi" that pulls everything together and gives a look of being collected over centuries). Of course this meant several more trips to our favorite destinations, including flea markets, book stores and street fairs. Always in a hurry, we know there's only one way to get around Paris in a pinch, even when you're carrying a lamp: Le Metro!
In the end, with minutes to spare, we pulled off the dream job that we all dream of! Now we just cross our fingers that we'll get another text, one of these days, with our favorite question: "If you're in Paris, could you please ..."
Oui, oui! Absolument.
P.S. And speaking of Paris ... we're headed there next month with a fun group of shoppers, and then again in September, and would love to have you join us! Read all about it and call us for more information. A bientot ...