♥Paris 2019 Report♥

I went to France for my 22nd birthday! Here's my report on my holiday and pictures, and stuff

♥Day One: Fri 21st♥

I woke up bright an early (6am!) at the start of this voyage. It wasn't that hard to wake as I practically never sleep. I find that quite useful at times, it's better than that over-sleeping grogginess, I suppose. The chosen mode of transport to France was the Eurostar - a train that goes underwater direct to Paris (or Disneyland if you'd like). My mother said she'd rather fly, but I hate flying because my ears pop and get really blocked. Plus the train is so much better because there's no liquid restrictions and such.

The journey was really easy, it took about 2 hours to get to Paris. The feeling of arriving (and leaving) somewhere new is really exiciting; you see, you wouldn't be able to look at the scenery in a plane. We arrived at Gare du Nord (North Station) and got tickets to the metro which was really simple thankfully, and set off to the hotel. Despite my getting lost easily, I find train maps really easy so we never got lost underground (I guess being from London helps).

The Paris Metro is very different to the London Underground, the trains are like the overground ones (this probably won't make sense unless you're from London) and there are 2 trains coming and going from one station (like there's 2 platforms). So compared to the London Underground, the Metro is a lot bigger. The trains are still just as small though, I found it was always quite tight on the train. Noticeably there were no designated spots for buggies(prams), luggage, pregnant women or disabled etc. Also the stations themselves really lack acessibility. Every station we went to you were required to walk up/down a ton of stairs to reach an escalator and I didn't see any lifts. Just going around with a heavy suitcase was hell. All the stations I went to looked the same, they were quite bare and not really picture-worthy.

So we were staying in Clichy which is a nice area near Paris, not too long a ride to and from Champs-Élysées. When I got out the train station I thought Paris was very pretty. The apartments all had flowers on their balconies, and there were pink flowers on the rails on the pavements. Everything looked pretty and clean. Our hotel was nice and had a modern feel to it. We had a cute balcony with a nice view.

It was afternoon when we arrived and we quickly settled in and decided where to go for the day. I turned on the TV to see a French dubbed Friends episode which was strange lol. We decided to go to Champs-Élysées and see where to go from there. Upon arrival we took in the prettiness of Paris. I don't know how to describe it, but it was just so spacious and beautiful. We walked by Grand Palais and other fancy looking museums. Everything had a grand feeling to it, like we were still in Rococo era. Beautiful statues and gold everywhere. I thought, it must be nice if you're a Parisian lolita.

Navigating around Paris wasn't too hard, but I found crossing the road a bit difficult at times. Some crossings did not have any sort of indication as to whether you could cross or not, and it was not obvious what was a zebra crossing or not. In particular at one crossing at a very big road, the pedestrian lights seemed to not exist, and people just walked into the road at will and the cars stopped. Now this certainly wasn't a zebra crossing with cars coming at every direction, it was certainly peculiar. Also not many lights had a button to press to make the lights change, and there were no timers on the pedestrian crossing to let you know when the lights would go green again.

We went to the Eiffel Tower and my mother was delighted. I never really was too excited about it, but it was quite nice. We then strolled over to the Arc de Triomphe. It was a nice walk because the scenery was lovely. As I mentioned, the pavements are wide so you never felt crowded. The Arc de Triomphe was quite nice, it was pretty big. There was a convoluted way in order to get to the actual thing, which involved going underground then coming back up. There was something going on as we left, I'm not sure. There were soldiers and some kind of official business happening. I saw a ton of soldiers and police in Paris, I've never seen soldiers really walking around London. It's very unlikely to see armed police here and the like so it frankly it was quite unsettling! But they had nice uniforms.. like they wore those cute little hats.

We walked around so more, almost actually exiting Paris at one and point, then decided to go back to the hotel. I did not plan to wear particularly comfortable trainers while sight seeing so I was fully prepared for painful feet. There was a little restaurant next to our hotel that did Italian food, so we went there for dinner.

It was pretty nice, a bit too saucy for me, but I love pasta. We got back, it was quite late and pretty much just fell asleep. I didn't check my phone much when I was there, not enough time. I was excited of course, because the next day would be my birthday, and also going to the Angelic Pretty store!

♥Day Two: Sat 22nd♥

Happy Birthday to me! I turned 22 today and was super excited because I would be going to the Angelic Pretty Paris store! I was (and still am) super bummed that BABY's Paris store had closed because I am more of a BABY girl than an AP one. BUT, that can't be helped and just to be able to visit a brand store and look at the dresses in the flesh was exciting enough!

Of course to go to a lolita shop, one should wear lolita right? Although my intentions were to wear an AP dress, frankly my AP pieces are very fluffy and took up nearly the whole suitcase! So I decided upon my latest MAM JSK which is pink (to match the store!) and lightweight which made it easy to pack. I meticulously steamed the JSK and blouse before packing but upon arrival was wrinkled to the extreme. The downside to this JSK is that it wrinkles to the slightest touch! (It's actually quite thin so I'm glad I got it for very cheap.) Luckily the hotel provided us with an iron to at least attempt to make the outfit presentable. The only thing AP from my coord is my headdress actually! The rest is all BTSSB, the shoes are antaina and the orb necklace is VW.

Dressed up in all pink we set out to Champs-Élysées and from there we would walk to Angelic Pretty. It was a super hot day and I did not bring a parasol as my intentions were to buy one at the store. It was so so hot. But finally we arrived! I took a moment to take in the shop's facade and then entered to be greeted by 2 cute shop girls. How lovely must it be to work at a brand store! You get to wear lolita every day...it's basically your job! The shop did not allow photography, of course, but it's how you would imagine - very pink! I spotted the black frill millefeuille parasol I had my eye on and picked it up. That was pretty much my plan for the trip but of course I took my time to look around and look at every item in the store. I picked up a few things for my mother's review and she exclaimed at the price of the headdresses.

I noticed the sax Dreamin' Fairy bag and thought it was very cute and my mother agreed. I slowly walked around having a little conversation with one of the shop girls about the summer heat and lolita fashion, then something caught my eye. A beautiful sax blue JSK. Baby pink daisy lace and blue gingham ribbons, my heart was stolen. I looked at the price tag, €310! A tad bit higher than my €100 budget - well less than €30 budget now due to the parasol. I picked it up and excitedly showed my mother anyways. She was not impressed with the price, however she did say I should try it on anwyays. Grateful that I wore a JSK and not an OP so I had a blouse on, I tried but on the dress. It's considerably long, surely would reach the ankles of the typical Japanese AP customer, but for me reached towards the middle of my calves which was certainly refreshing as a tall lolita. Re-emerging from the dressing room and showing my mother who said it was nice, I took my time pondering and staring at the mirror (as if I could actually afford the dress!).

I'm a very very indecisive person. I take forever to shop, always second guessing myself. Luckily my mother was there to pretty much make a decision. As if by miracle she said she'd buy me the dress! (Of course all future Christmas and birthday presents are off the table for a good while). My mother can be very strict but then she'll go all soft all of a sudden. At the till she then added "Get the bag too" and did not even care about the price all of a sudden. She also paid for my parasol too. I felt very lucky My mother talked to the girls and was very genuinely interested in the brand and the fashion. The price of the clothes really put into perspective how dedicated lolitas are to the fashion. I got my Angelic Pretty stamp card - how exciting! It's already half full thanks to this purchase, I'd love to be able to actually go back sometime too. I got my big shopper bag taped with Angelic Pretty tape and tied up with Angelic Pretty ribbon and was happily on my way. I tried to get some pictures outside the store but the sun was shining so awkwardly the lighting was off. Not to mention my mother cannot take a picture to save her life.

So, matching my bag we decided to set off for some food. Of course I really wanted to go to Laduree since we're in France. It seems that there's Laduree's that only do macarons in France too so we had to find one that did food too. It took a while, it was a bit of a trek to be frank. I took out my parasol, which I kind of didn't want to because of the lovely wrapping!, as the heat midday heat became unbearable!. I caught a lot of attention as usual in lolita but maybe even more so with this frilly black parasol. But boy does a parasol help with the shade! Laduree was pretty far and we walked through the place where the Louvre is to get there. (Quite some time has passed since I was there so the name now escapes me!).

It seemed to be Men's Paris Fashion Week while we were there and on our way to Laduree, photographers were gathering around the venue of a show. A photographer called out to me and took a snap of me - which I did actually try to protest, I don't like my picture to be taken really. I probably look really stupid and sweaty anyways. But it was funny in hindsight. We arrived at Laduree finally and we were seated upstairs. It was pretty identical to Laduree in London to be honest. There was an audible reaction from a little girl at my arrival, but all I wanted to do was sit down and cool off! I ordered an iced coffee and flan (to which the waitress corrected my pronounciation which was very embarrassing!) and my mother ordered the same with some french fries as we were quite hungry. I was really really disappointed with the flan! It was such a small slice! In London the flan is huge and actually cheaper than in Paris!

While eating my mother and I mostly only talked about lolita fashion. Luckily my mother is not very judgmental, and while she thinks lolita is quite a bit too pricey she encourages my creativity through the fashion. She said I need a bigger wardrobe and how I should move into the spare room and made all these funny plans. I showed her some of my dream dresses and things like that and opened her eyes a lot more to the fashion. Im sure seeing the shop girls gushing about AP also helped.

Afterwards we went back to the Louvre, however the tickets were all sold out for the day. I did not think much about tickets before going, and it makes me a lot more grateful that mostly every main museum is free here - no lining up for hours! I was quite disappointed but hoped we'd be able to snag tickets for the next day. I really was looking forward to the Louvre as I love museums. So we decided to walk around a bit and go to see the Notre Dame. Due to the fire the month prior there was a big barrier of scaffolding work around the church so it was hard to get a good look. Of course it was still busy and everyone wanted to still see it. I suppose seeing it in it's current state is just as rare as seeing it in it's usual state. After, we went to Saint Chapelle which wasn't too very far away. We had to wait in a long line to get into security checks, then another long line to actually enter the building. In high heels and the summer heat, it was not very fun. However Saint Chapelle had very pretty stained glass. Being an EU citizen under 25 you can enter museums and the like for free, so I was very lucky - unlike my mother. Saint Chapelle is actually very small, and personally not worth the money.. I wouldn't have gone if I'd known it was just a two story room. Go if it's free for you, I'd say.

In the evening, we ate at Chipotle (very French I must say!). Actually I've never eaten Chipotle before and I wanted to see what the fuss was about. I had a burrito and it was very nice and super filling. We sat outside and I was too tired and hungry to care about the people staring at me as the walked by. I changed into my flats which don't really support my feet either but anything's better than heels! We went back to the hotel and once again before I could even catch up on the outside world I was out like a light.

♥Day Three: Sun 23rd♥

I woke up to find my mother had successfully gotten a ticket to the Louvre for midday and I was very glad to be able to go. It was the hottest day of the trip (luckily we were there before the even hotter days to come) and to be frank I was not looking forward to venturing out. I had my parasol but I knew the heat would be unbearable. Have I ever mentioned my distaste for super hot weather? I wore a long shoulderless dress which went nicely with my parasol, and again flat shoes. We decided to spend our time that morning going to a shop called La Fayette, I believe, a department store akin to Harrods in London. I wanted to get a new Yves Saint Laurent lip gloss to replace my one that was almost finished. The store was full of rich tourists lining up to go into Gucci and the likes, I felt quite envious! Shopping for designer goods is like second nature to these people, I wonder what it's like! (Says the girl that just got a wonderful gift at Angelic Pretty the day before!) After looking around a bit we set off the to the Louvre, but took a stop at Starbucks to get a drink to cool down. Surely this area we were in must have been very wealthy, it was the fanciest Starbucks I'd ever seen! Have you seen a Starbucks with the chandeliers and the ceiling painted with cherubs??!

We arrived at the Louvre at little early and sat in some shade to relax a bit. We then lined up and got into security, which like Saint Chapelle is very thorough with those scanners you'd see at the airport! We finally got inside and was told I had to put my parasol in the cloakroom. Luckily I know what 'parapluies' is due to The Umbrellas of Cherboug lol. The umbrella holder in the cloakroom was surely not functioning and no one else there seemed to be able to figure it out. Luckily there were lockers long enough to fit umbrellas in. We then entered the museum and looked around. Honestly I felt very tired and my feet were hurting and I sorely regretted not wearing trainers. I only ate a very light breakfast of bread and fruit during my time in Paris so I felt hungry quite quickly. However we looked around at some statues and some more anciet stuff. There were a lot of great beautiful statues. I mostly took pictures of cherubs, and I should upload pictures to the museum part of my gallery. We also saw that statue of the headless angel - such a crude description but I don't remember the name. I just exclaimed to myself how that statue is also in Animal Crossing - I'm not the most cultured clearly. I did of course know about Mona Lisa, and I spent a hellish what felt like 20 minutes being squashed in like a sardine and pushed around as we shuffled through the room. Held behind a glass pane AND a barrier, the Mona Lisa is a surprisingly small work and after snapping a few terribly blurry photographs all I wanted to do was get out of the room. I suppose the Mona Lisa is one of, if not the most famous paintings in the world - but what a load of kerfuffle!

We decided to go and get some lunch before going back in again. Unfortunately there were no vegetarian options at the sandwich shop for my mother so she went to starbucks for a coffee and doughnut. I enjoyed a ham and cheese baguette and we also picked up some maps as we'd forgotten at the start. We did get to see an area which was based off of Napoleon III's house(?). It was very very grand and it was like the dream location for a lolita meetup. I was feeling knackered as we looked around more and more than anything just wanted to go back to the hotel. We decided to leave, besides the we probably did not even cover 50% of the giant museum. It's definitely somewhere that you must visit multiple times, preferably on a week day. I should go back while it's still free (and while wearing lolita). My mother wanted to buy some souvenirs and then we went back to the hotel. I felt a little deflated after having quite a lackluster day. But I ended up falling asleep for a while until I was woken up for dinner. We were to go back to the Italian place next to the hotel but it was closed - I suppose that's a French thing? Many restaurants were closed. We ended up going to a nearby McDonald's. One must try McDonald's wherever they go right? The food came with a 'pommes frites (chips)' sauce which was delicious! It's kind of herby but maybe mayonnaise-y? Too bad we don't have it in London. I was super tired and feel asleep very quickly. Tomorrow would be the last day of this journey.

♥Last Day: Mon 24th♥

Today was the last day of my trip, and well, it wasn't even a proper full day because we had to get the train at around 5pm. Unfortunately check out was around midday so we had to find a way to kill the time. It was, again, extremely hot and stuffy, and I could not take sitting at the train station any longer! I was also very tired and wanted to rest my head, which I couldn't. It was the tough decision between get up and go somewhere else even though I'm tired or just stay and suffer for hours. Of course, my mother made the decision for us and we headed out for a while. We ended up at McDonald's again, for some lunch. We also got McFlurries to cool off. I ordered an extra pommes frites sauce to take home. After sitting in the cool for a while, we went back to the station and sat in a cafe and my mother ate her lunch. Eventually we would be able to go through security to the Eurostar waiting area. More waiting ensured until we could finally board the train. We sat in standard class on the way back unlike when we came in the premier class, and I actually quite preferred it. There's something cosy about trains I suppose. We arrived back to London and the journey home was very easy. I finally unwrapped my Angelic Pretty goodies and relaxed.

For reference here is the dress, although I was just wearing it for fun, which a plain t-shirt and no petticoat. I have yet to even take the tag of my items! The dress is so pretty, I can't bear to wear it until I have a nice meetup! It's such a different feeling to getting second hand old school stuff - it has a more delicate feeling - which can be a bit annoying! In fact when I again tried it on to show my mother's friend who revels in lolita fashion, the button of the strap came off! Luckily there was a spare, although I don't see the need for a strap wth a button anyway, as you can adjust the length. Alas I will be careful. I'm even worried about the bag, as I know Angelic Pretty bag peel easily after time, so I haven't used that either. Despite now understanding the worries many girls have with their dresses (considering many girls only have new stuff), it's exciting to have a dress that came out this year and is actually brand new. This is the only chiffon I will accept in my wardrobe! (Besides the dress is cotton with a chiffon overlay).

So that is all for this Paris report! It's been a considerably long time since I went so hopefully I haven't forgotten anything! I'd love to go back soon, preferebly in milder weather! Au revoir!