Dear Vive: We called our friend Eva (owner of Elegancia at 1869 W. 25th Street in Cleveland), who shops frequently in Europe, and she was happy to share some advice.
Look for cutting-edge designs and designers that you can’t easily find in the U.S. You can often find unusual items in pop-up boutiques. Remember that many boutiques close for siesta, so eat a leisurely lunch, relax for a few hours and then spend the evening shopping.
You can find some designer labels in France for less money than you can find them here. For example, you may spend less on something from Louis Vuitton and Chanel than if you were to buy it here. If you can find it in the U.S., especially for a similar price, pass on it.
Galeries Lafayette is a fabulous place to shop for designer names.
If you’re in the market for vintage clothing, know that French women wear their clothing to death. They spend a lot on most pieces and wear them forever so by the time these beautiful items make their way to vintage shops, they’re often pretty well worn.
For fun, try some of Paris’s flea markets, where they sell beautiful collections of antique lace and French linens as well as coats, aprons, clothing, shoes, glassware and more. The lace and linens are fabulous French finds, things we usually don’t have in the U.S.
Readers: Do you have any tips for shopping in Paris?