We were up at the crack of dawn this morning and off to the Parc Exposition just outside Paris. The train was literally a United Nations sardine can of buyers, reps, and others coming out for the show. As usual, when we arrived, it was the model of efficiency and very well organized, and we collected our badges and dropped off our coats and off we went to Hall 3!
The first booth that caught my eye was a fantastic glassware company that had the most beautiful handmade glassware made from recycled glass. It was delicate, but not fragile, and a wonderful handmade feel . The line runs the gamut from wine and water glasses and carafes to tumblers of different sizes, bowls and hurricanes for candles and tealights. Beautiful and responsible!
It was then a long snake up and down all the aisles seeing all the new merchandise. Another exciting find was a company that manufactures wood handled flatware that is dishwasher safe. The line comes in stainless steel or silver plate and in a variety of woods such as olive, ebony, rose and boxwood.
For those wanting a little more je ne sais quoi in their flatware, fear not! Also uncovered was a venerable French company that makes hand forged flatware the old fashioned way! This, however is NOT safe for the dishwasher, but amazing to feel in your hand- truly something that you will have forever! No pictures to show, but the heft in the hand is impressive, and completely customizable meaning you can have each place setting finished with different wood (and there are six: ebony, olive, snake, boxwood, cocobolo, and tulipwood).
Also found was my favorite linen manufacturer. This is the REAL deal: beautifully weighted, heavy linen completely hand embroidered. The whole line is breathtaking and the embroidery is something to behold. Here is just a sample of their latest, a pattern called Magnolia on beautiful drab colored linen.
The last stop was at a favorite artist remembered from our trip two years ago who creates amazing dinnerware. She calls herself a “clay embroideress” and each piece is a unique piece of art for the table. The red clay pieces, which are glazed white, had bits of lace laid into the clay before firing, and have a freeform edge. I bought a complete place setting (dinner plate, lunch plate, salad plate and bowl) which I use as serving pieces and I think they are spectacular! The lovely thing was that she had remembered my name after two years without a pause. That was incredible!
Phew, more tomorrow!