Wednesday, March 27, 2013

The Lure of Exotic Style

I am drawn to global, exotic influences. I believe I developed this love from the semester I studied in France. I spent my first three weeks as a guest/roomer with a family in Cannes, then stayed at an international dorm in Paris.

I was exposed to many different cultures. I dated local residents, explored and became fascinated with various aspects of Paris. I loved the enormous flea market at Porte de Clignancort, the architectural beauty of the spires and flying buttresses of the back facade of Notre Dame, the natural calm of the Bois de Boulogne, the artisans of Montmartre, even the different styles of dress of the ladies of St. Denis.

Although my stay in Cannes was brief, I definitely loved being in the Côte d'Azur, aka the French Riviera, during the off season. I have always found watching waves fascinating and I practically had the beach to myself. I also snacked with friends at the al fresco tables of the famous Carlton Hotel, had fresh croissants and hot chocolate for breakfast (courtesy of "my family"), and greeted my neighbors, in French of course, when I opened or closed my room's traditional window shutters.

Although I had only taken Beginning French I and II, I learned to develop a great ear for the language ... My family spoke, collectively, one sentence of English. They were kind enough to take me on a tour of the often overlooked interior geography of Cannes. It was beautiful, especially the vast flower-covered hills that are harvested for perfume.

While in Cannes, I was also lucky enough to go to Monte Carlo, catch Prince Albert presenting an award to the winner of the Grand Prix de Monaco and attend the Carnaval de Nice (Nice's carnival for Mardi Gras).

Those wonderful experiences definitely influence my attraction to global fashion and decor. Here are some exotic pieces I'm loving at the moment.

Lotus Box Clutch

Lady Fox Vintage Cuff

Moroccan Door

Hammered Stool

Linen Covered Trunk

Abstract by Studio Sweet Shadows