Le cadeau

Last Monday, while scrambling around in search of a Paris bar for E’s (aka dear daughter) surprise birthday party, I was still trying to figure out what to get her for a gift. I am a badge holding member of “its the thought that counts” club. Unfortunately, those thoughts don’t always coincide perfectly with birthdays and major holidays. I mess up. I also prefer giving experiences rather than material goods, but that is covered with two tickets to sit in one of those oh-so-romantic, red brocade-lined loges to watch Robbins/Ek at the Opera Garnier later in the week.

The gift solution had been eluding me for months. My Parisiennes were beginning to think I was a bit nuts. Gift giving and birthdays are not a major event here, where Martha is an anonymous nobody and Goop is not yet taunting us with our inadequacies.

I was being Américaine, they warned.

Just get her a blazer, they advised.

Then, the told me about their own childhood gifts… flatware. I can just imagine trying that with a teenager today, “Yes darling, I’ve purchased you a fork. Isn’t that exciting? Mommy’s so thrilled! By the time you get married you’ll have a whole set of sterling flatware for your chéri, and the little ones to follow!” No wonder these women need to smoke!

Deciding they were right, and hoping to put my brain waves to better use, I went to the Bon Marche and checked out the Perle de Lune jewelry counter. I love their casual, elegant style, inspired by India, yet perfectly suited to life in Paris. They use quality stones, with intense colors and cuts that add sparkle, without bling. I quickly found a simple, elegant bracelet, for just over 100€. 18k gold, with intensely colored blue topaz, it is perfectly unique, just like E.

Perle de Lune is available at these Paris stores;  Le Bon Marche, Galeries Lafayette, Franck et Fils, Diamantissimo

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6 thoughts on “Le cadeau

  1. Beautiful! I bet that your daughter is relieved that you didn’t listen to your French friends!

    I still remember the look on our daughter’s face when we gave her a three piece set of Delsey luggage for her birthday. At the time, she thought it was the lamest gift ever. Now, she loves it.

    I’ll have to check out the jewelry counter when I’m at Bon Marche tomorrow,

  2. Bonjour! I’m a friend Jane S. and she sent me your link. I think the necklace is perfect but I’m still laughing about the flatware. When I graduated from HS in the 60’s a jewelry store here in B’ham gave a sterling spoon in your “pattern.” Some of my mom’s friends did so as well. Well to be honest, flatware was pretty cheap back then. ALl that to say when I did marry, I had a few pieces to get me started. That wouldn’t fly now as you so well pointed out!

    Love your blog. I’ll add to my fav French blogs.

  3. PERFECT choice! I think she will love it! I know my daughter(s) would! (as would I, frankly). I also agree that the gift of an experience is a truly excellent choice! Thus she will have a most perfect birthday! Bravo! She may chose to wear her new necklace to the Opera Garnier (unless given afterwards).

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