After an afternoon window shopping the edgy boutiques of Le Marais, energy levels were running dangerously low. We were ready to call hipster fatigue and head back to our Airbnb for a nap. But I’m so glad we pushed on to check out one last shop on our list. To think I would never have experienced the all consuming delight of a few hours spent at Merci! Just look at the courtyard outside, for starters – an instagram dream.
Merci (www.merci-merci.com) is a concept store serving up achingly cool fashion, homeware and lifestyle goods in an enchanting former wallpaper factory. A mix of curated brands, their own designs, and a small dose of vintage; it’s playful and eclectic, with a touch of edginess. There’s also two cafes and an invitingly cosy bookshop.
Browsing the womenswear was like being in a sort of luxe flea market. Every piece had the lovely unique feeling that you wouldn’t come across it anywhere else. However, my love affair with Merci kicked up a notch on the homeware mezzanine. The vibe was a kind of soothing rustic bohemian, with washed linen bedding in muted tones, and wholesome table settings which seem straight out of a Provencal farmhouse.
Desperate to take home a piece of my new favourite shop, but on a budget, I allowed myself one souvenir. Hours later, after much perusing and deliberating over covetable little things, I emerged with a scented candle by the brand Lola James Harper – ‘Promenade in Vincennes Wood’. It’s a subtle fresh pine-y sweet scent, and its amber-coloured glass jar also happens to look great on my mantlepiece.
I did a little research when I got home and found out that Vincennes Wood is a forest about an hour out of Paris. So now I have a little piece of (nearly) Paris in my bedroom. I also dig the brand, which was new to me. Lola James Harper (www.lolajamesharper.com) describe themselves as ‘a family of four travelling the world, recording songs with local artists, taking pictures and encapsulating scents of places they love…’. Dreamy. I want a piece of it! I’m already trying to decide which candle I’m going to order next from a collection of evocatively named scents like ‘The Recording Studio on Trufo Street’ and ‘The Rainy Days in Lake District’.
Thank you, Merci.