It’s been a few days since I’ve had the chance to post, but for good reasons. I am back in my hometown of Paris for a few weeks. I needed to hit my old stomping ground and escape the LA grind. Not that Paris doesn’t get crazy. When it comes to chaos, Paris is as chaotic as any other major urban hubs i.e. LA, New York, London, but Parisians have a way to keep stress at bay.

When it comes to setting boundaries, Paris lives up to the hype! Comes hell or high water, Parisians know how to make the separation between work and personal life, this means setting-up clear boundaries. I have lost that habit in Los Angeles but seeing how Parisians hold this concept sacred reminds me of how I need to follow that rule to keep my sanity. One thing that is distinctively different is how Parisians have perfected the art of not giving a shit. If you want to see what looking unpressed look like, just go to any bistros at any time of the day. Parisians know how to take the time to enjoy life.

The bistro culture is a very very prevalent part of French society.  More so now following, the November 2015 terrorist attacks which sought to destroy our way of life, shatter our sense of safety, but one thing about Parisians is that we are resilient as fuck and if anything those attacks have re-energize the culture of bistros in Paris. Being back in my hometown of Paris in the same month of the attacks is emotional to me, but it’s clear that bistros are more than a place where French gather in order to forget the soucis of life, bistros are hella political establishments.

Every intellectual Luminaries from Simone De Beauvoir to James Baldwin, Ernest Hemingway, Albert Camus, Jean Paul Sartres have congregated at bistros to ponder over deep philosophical issues. Culturally, the bistro (or bistrot) embodies an untangible esprit de Vivre that unites cultures together, not to mention, reminds us of how important our way of life deserves to be preserved and that neither work, stress, or even terrorism can ever come between us and our joie de  vivre.

xx, Kenza

 

 

Photography credits: Kenza Johnson 

Looking fabulous is not limited to a particular season, but fall is one season where fab rules! From bold textures and earthy tones to colorful animal prints, sequins, terra cotta, mauves, dusty roses, burgundy, dramatic colors like silver metallic. Textured clothing such as velvet, corduroy, suede, fringes, and the oh so ever glamorous tortoise pattern that is singlehandedly an enduring trend beloved by the fashion world also play a central role in this season.

      1. Fall is fun and offers the perfect opportunity to be playful, sophisticated and dazzle the crowd, and what a better way to spruce up your glamour one level with this zebra-patterned Carine pocket calf leather from Hugo Matha, a young French designer who has taken the fashion scene by storm.  Be ready to hear a lot more from him in this blog.
      2. I am lusting for those sexy suede fuschia pumps from the iconic paris based shoe designer  Roger Vivier.
      3. This glow purse in tortoise Film from Maryam Nassir Zadeh is absolutely stunning and makes such a Hollywood statement!
      4. I also love, love, love this Alpaca Camel Beret from Brooklyn-based designer laura manoogian and those super cute mesh socks in olive stripes from darner.
      5. Of course, scents are critically essential and not to be downplayed. One of my favorite scent of the moment is the Bal D’afrique eau de parfum from Byredo.
      6.  If you haven’t checked out Zara’s fall collection yet, you should take a peek at their uber sophisticated jewelry collection. those sparkly chain earrings and faux-pearls and coin necklace will ensure you shine at your next vernissage without going bankrupt.  I love Zara for that. I believe that social equity in the fashion world is so critical and that women regardless of social status, education or income should look good and feel their absolute best!
      7. I’m also fond of pastels and this cute nail polish shows how pastel colors aren’t limited to summer.

    xx, Kenza

 

 

 

 

 

 

Photo credits via: Hugo matha; roger vivier; byredo; need supply and Zara websites

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I’m undoubtedly lucky to live in Sunny Los Angeles, but every now I then, I get terribly homesick, finding myself dreaming of retiring in Paris and owning a beautiful pied-a-terre like this beautiful Parisian apartment located in the  6eme arrondissement in super trendy Saint-Germain-des-Prés.   The dramatic entrance embodies opulence at its finest. The exotic wallpaper not only contrasts nicely with the tall black doors but exudes far distant lands.  The built-in Archway screams sophistication while shying away from more austere traditional foyers. It definitely draws you in.  The eclectic colors found throughout the apartment, warm blues, khaki walls, chevron parquetry, and the palatial living room, with its jaw-dropping crown molding, whimsical blue velvet sofa, and luscious emerald green rug are staged unobtrusively to create a convivial atmosphere where sophistication and simplicity will satisfy the most intransigent aficionados.  Enjoy the tour!

xx, Kenza

 

photography and designed via GCG architects Paris

 

 

 

The allure of simplicity lies in its purity of lines and clean aesthetic.  Hausmannian buildings are known to be chic and elegant: impeccable crown moldings, white walls, high ceilings, original chevron parquets to die for. It is my hope to one day own a beautiful Hausmannian Pied-à-Terre, but until that moment arrives (I have no doubt it will), I will settle by drooling over unfairly gorgeous apartments to keep me motivated. I believe in visualization and manifesting my reality and this beautiful Parisian apartment does not lack charm. The living room itself sets the tone for what’s to be found throughout this apartment. I’m still swooning over the salon’s global charm. It definitely has the boho appeal I love but without looking Instagram staged.  Did you notice how that glass partial divider adds dimension to this room, creating a clever and unobtrusive separation between the eating area and living room?

No crazy mix of colors, but check out the cool posters and artwork, and the most obvious star of this room: the majestic peacock overlooking the room. Although beautiful, I have strong reservations about this and this blog post no way endorses taxidermy!

Now that I got this out of the way, my eyes are fixated on this imposing built-in bookshelf. I love books and I’m floored by how jaw-dropping this book corner is.  By the way, those colossal french windows are impossible to ignore and can be found throughout this darling apartment.  Accent pieces and colorful pillows add a measured touch of character without going overboard. I also appreciate that from this angle, the dining table on the other side of that glass divider is barely noticeable. How ingenious is that?

By the way, the splendor of this apartment is not solely confined to the living room. The bedrooms are just as opulent and captivating and wait until you see that unforgettable bathroom.

 

 

 

 

 

My infatuation deepens with those enormous lanterns. I mean look at them! What are those? Wow! Stunning to say the least. I have not seen quite anything like this before, but interestingly enough the soft sheer fabric of those lamps do not take away from the rest of this hallway where gorgeous Morrocan rugs adorn the beautiful chevron parquet found throughout this place. Simply breathtaking!

This beautiful Emmanuel Peacock chair found at the end of the hallway is undoubtedly majestic, GOAT to say the least. It’s also on my bucket list! Those chairs aren’t cheap either and will run you for a good $500 and up here in Los Angeles, but they are such an enduring testament of status. I can see myself sitting there, bare naked (no shame!), unbothered, sipping on a sparkly flute of Veuve Clicquot. Ahhh la belle vie.. Now that’s what we French folks call la Joie De Vivre! What’s your Joie De Vivre?

 

The rest of the tour can be accessed here.

Photo credit: Adélaïde Klarwein

xx, Kenza