October 25, 2012

Designs That Inspire: Un Petit Parisian Apartment

Are you one of those people who, when watching a film that is set in Paris, you pay attention not just to the story line but to the exterior and interior designs of the settings - be it a street, office, store, parking lot and/or an apartment? I'm one of those people.
Not only I peek into the offices and stores, but sometimes I peek into someone's window just to get a glimpse of what the life must be like inside this apartment that is located on...Montmartre in Paris, for example.

I remember I put my travel companion through horror, when I stopped at every single first floor apartment window on Montmartre to look inside to see the interiors of the apartment, where, once, some famous French impressionist might have lived. As a matter of fact, I did discover many interesting things about the very particular - very French - interiors, which no travel book will feature for you.
Once, on one of my trips to Paris, I was walking the streets of Montmartre and I was passing those long stairs that go up from Pigalle to Sacré-Cœur Basilica and I saw this little apartment with the windows open with the cutest - very Parisian - curtains.

I couldn't help but to peek inside the window to see what's it's like inside…and I found a typical Parisian apartment that most likely belong to an artist: no one was there - [which was good in my case, no one wants to end up in a Parisian prison for the intrusion on private property]. It looked kind of like the one of the left, but almost as clean as on the right, if it makes any sense...

The walls were rustically white. There were just a few pieces of furniture - a wooden table, or rather a desk for the artist to work on, which was covered in paint all over with a few brushes and a color palette laying around. There was one wooden chair and a cupboard with an empty glass and a tall bottle of water - just as you usually see at the Parisian cafes. All the furniture pieces were of a minimalist style - plain, white, square, rustic… However, there was this one detail that I've noticed that I've only seen in a few places before, and most of them were in Paris - [a very Parisian style thing to do, you say? Perhaps…] - there was this tall vase on the floor made out of the glass pieces of different color and it had long birch tree branches that didn't seem to be dead, but rather - alive, very fresh.

The way the vase was positioned against the day light and the plain white wall, those branches looked very dramatic, they were almost taking over the whole apartment that was not big in the first place. It complemented the overall setting in such a way that what might have looked like a very plain, empty apartment-studio, ended up like a very art nouveau, very Parisian appartement...

Here' s just how I always pictured a Parisian apartment, before I actually saw one back in 1995. My interpretation of it were not far from the truth. I realized that one of the reasons I like the interior design of the Parisian apartments is because I'could definitely see it to be applicable to my apartment in New York City. These are some of my favorite interiors. Let me know, if you'd like any of them!


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