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Ideas for small, not-too-expensive (but still nice) gifts to bring back for friends from Paris??


Ideas for small, not-too-expensive (but still nice) gifts to bring back for friends from Paris??

Old Feb 12th, 2005, 07:50 AM
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The best thing I bought in Paris were some kitchen towels (bought at La Samaritaine) that were made in France, and had scenes of Paris on them. Really nice.
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Old Jun 4th, 2005, 11:43 AM
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Ditto the french cotton dishtowels--I buy one or two each year we go. Also, go to a grocery store and buy a soda-sized bottle of SOMETHING, i.e. vinegar, something inexpensive, that you like the labels. Pack in a zip lock bag or empty the contents before you fly home. Buy a small metal spout in a cork at BHV or someplace similar that will fit in the bottle. Back home, get a spray can of matte craft spray and remove the bottle's cap before spraying. Fill with your favorite liquid dish soap, and you have a reminder of Paris each time you do dishes. I also bought charming small painted tin signs showing soaps and kitchen goods at one of the indoor 'passages' arcades. One year we bought a dozen of the curved colored Leonardo highball glasses that are now available in the MOMA catalog--but we had them two years prior to the US! And then there was the year we lugged home three large ceramic containers from Conran--in our hand luggage. But each time I see them sitting on my kitchen counter labeled 'Biscuit' 'Farine' 'Pates', I am SO glad I talked my DH into schlepping them with me! Also consider Christmas ornaments--we love to go to Paris in November, and have brought back some fabulous ornaments. Ditto fabric from the Montmarte shops if you sew--a simple skirt length is easy to pack. DH likes to bring home reproduction prints from the photography and art shops. I also buy the inexpensive Chanel brand (begins with a B)at the drug stores--lipsticks and nail enamels--for teenagers. But the best thing to bring back is PHOTOGRAPHS and memories!
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Old Jun 4th, 2005, 12:56 PM
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I found these neat little postcards in a store in Montemarte, at the foot of the Sacred Couer. I don't remember the name of the store, sorry.
They are meant to be cut out and form a cute little image, like a dog, a bee, cat etc. They were only a euro or two and the few people I gave one too seemed very pleased.
I couldn't part with the one that is a dog made to look like the Eiffel Tower. (or maybe it's an ET made to look like a dog.)
Inexpensive and very packable.
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Old Jun 4th, 2005, 03:17 PM
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The lipstick is Bourjois; I love mine, and although some stores here sell the line, including Sephora, I love that I got mine at Monoprix. I also bought my brother a bottle of eau de cologne at Monoprix, and wouldn't you know, he loved it, used it up, and now wants more! I guess I'll just have to go back to Paris...
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Old Jun 4th, 2005, 05:37 PM
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The RATP store in the Châtelet-les-Halles RER station has a wide selection of Métro souvenirs. The Louvre has a huge bookstore with very high quality reproductions of artworks from the museum. Both types of gifts are almost impossible to find anywhere else and thus make good souvenirs.

I used to give people Métro tickets as souvenirs, since they are impossible to find outside Paris, but people were more concerned with how much I spent than with the authenticity of the souvenir.
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Old Jun 4th, 2005, 05:54 PM
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The D'Orsay shop has CDs with classical music for 9 euros. They are packaged beautifully. I bought two -- one Monet and one Gaugin.
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Old Jun 4th, 2005, 07:07 PM
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Oh Ira,
silly, silly you! LOL
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Old Jun 5th, 2005, 02:17 AM
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little gifts for under USD 10 or EUR 7,50:

the little tour eiffel replica - look for it at galeries lafayette or le printemps. you can also get the usual postcards maybe a little cheaper then a a newsstand. also, you have an excuse to go there - the other one is, that both of these stores are worth sightseeing. look up for the stained glass cupole in the center and go on the top for the panorama.

french newsmagazines covering the interests of your friends. you get them at newsstands or magazine shops.

second hand books or antique postcards. you find them at les bouquinistes, the bookstalls at the embankment of river seine.

french pocket books of interest you can get at book shops, the largest of them to be found at quartier latin around Boulevard St. Germain and Boulevard St. Michel. the french also have a wide range of comic books for every age and interest.

some painting postcards or stationery you can purchase at the museum shops.

at pharmacies - look for the green cross - you will obtain not only prescription medicine but also quality cosmetics, like the scented soaps of Roger & Gallet. if there is a woman pharmacist to serve you, ask her for your wishes. she will be pleased to help you, when you try at least some french on her.

there are lovely shops at the passages couverts Passage Jouffroy and Passage Verdeau (between Boulevard Montmartre and Rue du Faubourg Montmartre, Metro Grands Boulevards), also good for some souvenir.

and, for free, the paris map issued by galeries lafayette or le printemps department stores, which you can take at your hotelīs reception.
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Old Jun 5th, 2005, 04:55 AM
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Even the supermarkets carry nice chocolate. France has wonderful paper products like notebooks, etc. Look in the museum shops for PostIt notes that have famous painting on them. Dried mushrooms for foodie friends--or foie gras tins.
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Old Jun 14th, 2005, 03:10 PM
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Hi Everyone! I just returned home from Paris last week and wanted to report that the little gifts I brought back from Paris were a big hit. Here's my rundown:

1) A totally cool miniature Eiffel Tower (12 inches) that lights up, changing to 4 or 5 different, beautiful colors: 11 EUROS

(Actually the vendor wanted 15 euros, but I bargained with him. Since it was midnight on a Tuesday under the Eiffel Tower, we were almost the only tourists around, so he relented.) This was a big hit for my nephew in Italy. He watches it change colours every night before going to sleep.

2) A bag of Rose Potpurri from the Rosemarie Schultz store: 8 EUROS (Thanks for the store suggestion, Scarlett!) My Italian sister-in-law loved it! It's quite strong.

3) Olive Oil soap from Oiviers & Co (a sister store to the French chain L'Occitane): 4 EUROS: Co-worker loved it!

4) VERY INEXPENSIVE chocolate from a local supermarket: approximately 4 EUROS, and enough to feed my many co-workers: They all dug it!

5) A bottle of Loire Valley white wine from a local Marais shop: 6 EUROS; Aunt loved it. Many quality French wines are really inexpensive if you explore the local markets.

6) Okay, this does not fall in the INEXPENSIVE-GIFT CATEGORY, but I purchased a mini oil painting from a street artist in Montmartre: 35 EUROS; Beautiful! For my father.

Just thought I'd share. Best wishes to all.
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Old Jun 14th, 2005, 03:22 PM
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Wonderful betty!
I love the idea of an Eiffel Tower night light

The rose potpourri is strong in the beginning, I put it in various places in small amounts, keeping some in a small bag that sits in a big hat box. I keep my scarves and pashminas in that, they all smell like roses

How great that you got a painting, something you will always have and remember your trip by..
Good shopping!
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Old Jun 14th, 2005, 05:35 PM
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Some great ideas - I'm already making a list for my next trip!

I brought home perfumed candles for myself and for others - Fragonard makes one called "Brioche" that smells so good you will want to eat it! I know you can get some Fragonard items in north america so I'm not sure if they are unique enough for you?

Chocolate never works for me since I eat it before I get home - I have even tried buying the nicely wrapped stuff, on the (faulty) theory that it will deter me from opening it - but it doesn't But,if you have more willpower than I, Cacao et Chocolat also has some nice things - not sure if they are available in NYC?

I also brought back some sets of "wash mitts" (is that the correct term?) from my last trip - maybe that's too mundane a gift, but the friends I gave them to just loved them.

There was a store which I came across in the 1st arr.- its called "Plaques et Pots" or something like that - it has miniature versions of Paris street signs (the blue/green signs that have the street name and arrondisement on them) and similar items - I thought they were kind of cute.
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Old Jun 14th, 2005, 06:08 PM
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Lol re eating the chocolate. That would be me, too. What I plan to look for is a 7-day pillbox. My dh takes 7 vitamins a day, and he keeps them in the most hideous plastic pillbox with the days written on each section. I figure the French version is probably going to be better designed, and at least it will be amusing to see the days written in French!
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Old Jun 14th, 2005, 06:23 PM
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We like to get black and white, or sepia toned, 8x10 photos of the cities we visit. They make nice gifts for framing. Very dramatic with the B&W effect. There's a little shop just across the bridge from the Eiffel Tower, where my daughter bought them this visit. I think she only paid about 5 EU apiece and they are wrapped in plastic and packed with cardboard for easy traveling.
Old Jun 14th, 2005, 06:29 PM
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Someone brought me one of the little metal Eiffel Towers. Loved it. Was surprised how cheap it was when I went to Paris. Someone else brought me the little set of coasters you can buy from the vendors along the Seine. Used them. Like them. Have collected coasters from other locales as well. Flat & light - packs and travels well.
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