Mission Inspiration: Paris

Rather than heaps of text, I thought I’d just post the photos of Paris that I took and still look at for inspiration. There are color swatches from some of the photos. Hope you like the photos.

Two different approaches to photographing the Eiffel Tower.

Chocolate Shopping: only a fraction of the stores I went into!

The Seine and Pont Alexandre III

Twilight and Night

Color swatches inspired by Paris:

I have heaps of photos from different Museums which allowed photography but I’m saving those for me.

Mission Yarnpossible: Paris

I think this pattern must be vintage by now.
I think this pattern must be vintage by now.

I had two ideas about yarn in Paris before I started research: La Droguerie and Phildar. La Droguerie has become my go-to store in Tokyo for beautifully colored yarn, fibers and notions. Now I was going to get a chance to see where it started. Phildar is a French yarn company. I have a decades old pattern for Phildar yarn that I always liked but could never find the yarn. This trip might see that sweater become a reality.

There are quite a few blogs about knitting and crafting in Paris. My favorite was www.onemancrochet.blogspot.com. The blog is a fun read and has a great list of stores to check out. I was most keen on Lil Weasel and added it to my list.

The Search for Phildar:
It seems like this brand is less popular than it used to be and it was hard to find. I found some Phildar in a little corner in Printemps department store but didn’t find the yarn from the pattern. Not only that, the yarn section was kind of an afterthought of a corner and wasn’t really that interesting. I think I’m not going to pursue this sweater. I love the design but the pattern isn’t easy to read and finding a replacement yarn will be tough in Japan because of language. There are easier things to spend time on and now I can move on from that idea.

La Drougerie

Going to La Drougerie is like heaven for yarn lovers and jewelry makers. I often go to the one in Shibuya. So going to the one in Paris was a no brainer. All La Drougerie stores are beautiful, full of great notions, yarns and colors. Lots of great examples cover the walls. If you aren’t inspired to make something when you walk into a La Drougerie then I don’t know what to say.

Despite the awe of color and ideas, visiting the Paris store was a bit disappointing. I didn’t see anything I couldn’t get in Tokyo and it’s not easy to buy stuff at this location. There is a ticket system for customer service that was hard to figure out. Normally, I’m all for systems that keep things organized but when I asked tried to ask for help with my poor French, I got completely ignored. There’s no photography in the store but my husband took a few shots from the outside because after all the effort of getting there, he wasn’t leaving without any.
Address: 9 et 11 rue du Jour, 75001 PARIS
Tél: 01 45 08 93 27/ Fax: 01 42 36 30 80
Heures d’ouverture:
Le lundi de 14h00 à 19h00
Du mardi au samedi de 10h00 à 19h00

At the entrance of the Passage. Photo by H.O.

Lil Weasel
Onemancrochet had a great post about wool shops to check out in Paris. I only went to Lil Weasel and it was a highlight of my trip. The store is located in Passage de Grand Cerf which is in the 2nd Arrondisement, the Montorgueil quarter, with entrances on the Rue Saint-Denis and Place Goldoni. This arcade is filled with stores selling antiques, art and artisanal objects so Lil Weasel fits right in. Even my husband found shops to interest him.

Lil Weasel is everything you would want for buying yarn. Just looking in the window is a visual treat. Super friendly staff, who speak English, are willing to talk to you about what you want to do and to help you make it. They have a fabulous selection of materials and yarns. They organize the things by color instead of brand or size. I’ve never seen this organization but I love it. I asked if I could take pictures and the staff seem surprised by the request and encouraged me to take photos.

They helped me pick out some colors to make some granny squares. We agreed on the green being a more interesting contrast color than dark gray but now I’m chicken about the green.
Address:1 Passage du Grand Cerf, 75002 Paris, France
Tél:+33 1 73 71 70 48
du Mardi au Samedi de 10h30 à 19h00

Things I made with yarn from Lil Weasel:
Valentine wrist warmers
Hello Kitty cup holder (debuting in a few weeks)

European Vacation: Missions Yarnpossible; Photoism; & Inspiration

Well, this post has been a long time coming. In January (yes, January) I went to Helsinki, Tallinn, and Paris with my husband for a delayed Christmas vacation.

It was a great trip. We saw a lot of places and tried a lot of different food. When I travel, I like to have a kind of theme or a mission. When I went to Kyoto last year, <a href=”https://thespendypencil.wordpress.com/2013/02/17/kyoto-mission-find-this-location/” target=”_blank”>my mission was to take a photo exactly the same as a travel poster</a>. When I went to London, it was a Regency period theme where I went to High Tea at Fortnum and Mason, rode a horse in Hyde Park and went to the Serpentine.

I had several ideas for this trip:
1. See museums, try to see what local artists are doing
2. Try to see what local artists are doing
3. Find some inspiration for design styles and colors
4. Walk around, take a lot of photos and drink lots of lattes, sample the cuisine.
5. Buy yarn to make my own souvenirs later

#5 became Mission Yarnpossible
#1 & #2 & #3 became Mission Inspire
#4 Became Mission Photoism

I scrounged the internet looking for stores and suggestions. I found more stores than I was able to go to but I also found some interesting blogs which I will introduce later in other posts.

I hope you enjoy the upcoming Mission series. Mission Yarnpossible will appear by city for the next three Yarn Addiction Thursdays. Missions Inspire and Mission Photosims will follow along with order of the Yarnpossible cities.

Yarn Addiction Thursday: Valentine Wrist Warmers

I made these wrist warmers with wool I bought in Paris at Li’l Weasel. Gorgeous shop and lovely staff. The wrist warmers are like long-in-the-making souvenirs.

I finished them in time for Valentine’s Day so that I could type with warm fingers.


No pattern, just a lot of trial and effort.

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