Merci & The Used Book Café, Paris
111 Boulevard Beaumarchais, is where you’ll find this old 18th century ex fabric factory turned designer concept store. Owned & opened in 2009 by Bonpoint owners Bernand & Marie-France Cohen this multi level fashion/home & accessories store complete with two cafés is a mecca for the design conscious shopper. I say design conscious, but to be honest it’s pretty accessible to the non-design shopper. There is an entire basement devoted to kitchenware, think practical glass tumblers & industrial style clamp lamps for 20€, even if you were a student you could go in & come out with a little gift for yourself. The ground floor is full of knick knacks to draw you into the store, a mini Aesop concession, jewellery, smaller gift things, some menswear & the Used Bookstore Cafe. The perfect spot for boiled eggs & soldiers on a sunday morning. The last time I popped by (for my eggs & soldiers) was the last sunday of Maison et Objet in January. It had been snowing for three days straight & the streets were that perfect ‘you could fall and break your leg at any moment’. So we took great comfort at getting to Merci and just camping out for an hour before our Eurostar back to London that afternoon.
You can guess that this is my favourite floor. The top floor is furniture, lots and lots of furniture. Gervasoni, Maison Martin Margeila, Emeco, beautiful tableware, their visual merchandising is amongst the best in the world. This is my wall of knowledge. I like to walk down this aisle and hope I can remember the designer and manufacturer of these chairs. It’s my own little pub quiz to myself. The shot below represents a great example of the installations that Merci create in the entrance. Just a simple campaign representing a new collection of headphones the store now carry, it’s still a very simple stunt. The first floor is dedicated to fashion. Think all those brands you’ve never heard of (to make you feel like you need to know more) mixed in with some Marni & Isabel Marant.
Now this is one for your wish list/wedding list. For 1100€ you get a complete kitchen set that is delivered to you on a giant wooden palette. Genius. Peelers, knives, chopping boards and ladles. A cooks dream.
The basement café & kitchen shop
All images LWSY