Aug 6th, 2014, 12:16 AM
Original Poster
Join Date: Jul 2014
Posts: 44

Where and What?
I am looking for some souvernirs unique to France . I live in Seattle and am visiting Paris. All the magnets and little towers can be found in Seattle too. Any suggestions? Where can I find them?

Thank you very much,
ssbbaa77 is offline  
Aug 6th, 2014, 01:25 AM
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I like L'Occitane products but those are available in the US and most can't go in carry-on, so I've just shot down my own suggestion!

La Vassellerie shops are in several locations, they have cute, small, French-like things, some possibly made in France.

Look for French paper products, moleskine journals and notebooks, calendars, children's books for someone studying French. Some of the pedestrian streets in the 5th and 6th have small boutiques with quirky things. Almost everyone loves the scarves from Dewali on Ile St. Louis but most won't pass a Made in France test if that's important.

I love Beauvillé table linens but only buy those for myself.
Cathinjoetown is offline  
Aug 6th, 2014, 01:33 AM
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Sorry, it's
Cathinjoetown is offline  
Aug 6th, 2014, 02:50 AM
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What I like to bring people - unless they are very close and you want to bring a real gift - is a guidebook from one of the major sights I visit. It's not only really from France it tells them something about at least a little part of France. Even if they aren't interested enough to read the text the pictures usually tell a fascinating story.

Much better than a plastic Eiffel Tower.
nytraveler is offline  
Aug 6th, 2014, 03:37 AM
Join Date: Dec 2007
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Look in the groceries.

Sea salts from various parts of France are light-weight, way less expensive than in the States.

Amora mustard: I think it's what makes French salad taste French, and it's very cheap (bulky, though). One-euro gifts are the colorful totes (with a French motto) sold at the registers in Monoprix.

Also soaps.
colonna is offline  
Aug 6th, 2014, 03:37 AM
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We have brought back stationery, Plans de Paris (map books), RATP bus guides, blue enamel house numbers, waffle towels, doll clothes, coat hooks, drawer pulls, hats, and scarves. Shoes for ourselves.
Ackislander is offline  
Aug 6th, 2014, 03:40 AM
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We bring back a Christmas ornament for our tree from all our travels! Makes putting up the tree even more fun!
jamikins is offline  
Aug 6th, 2014, 06:34 AM
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For tea lovers I have brought back Marriage Frere silver tea spoon scoops-tiny to carry, nicely boxed and under 10 euros at least when I got them last time 4-5 years ago. I also always get questions and compliments on the Paris metro plastic shopping bag that I use. Can't tell you how many people in trader joe's want to know where to get one. There are also some nice metro map tee towels and some less "cheesy" ones that are more true linen towels with Eiffel Tower, scenes of Paris etc.

We also have 10-15 plastic photo placemats from different towns in France that we rotate for own use at home-reminds us of our trips
jpie is offline  
Aug 6th, 2014, 07:11 AM
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My husband and I have purchased ornaments from our domestic travel, but have not done so while abroad as it seems much more common to find Christmas ornaments for sale all year long in the States. We are going to Italy next year (Rome and Umbria). Any ideas for where one might find Christmas ornaments in Italy in May? Like you, we love decorating the tree and remembering all the placs we've been. Plus, some of the ornaments crack me up (a gladd lobster from Maine for example). I mean, how Christmas, right?

Sorry for the threadjack by the way. My typical gift for people from Paris is tea from the aforementioned Marriage Frere, jams, mustards and chocolates (depending on the weather).
indyhiker is offline  
Aug 6th, 2014, 09:21 AM
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indyhiker: you can find Christmas ornaments in Rome in souvenir shops in the general area of the Piazza Navona.

I don't know where you're going in Umbria abut my suggestion is to look in real souvenir shops that cater just to tourists.

Threadjack is a great word.
tuscanlifeedit is offline  
Aug 6th, 2014, 10:13 AM
Join Date: Sep 2012
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Okay, for starters, who doesn't like food:

-- Chocolate: Buy at CDG airport just before you depart.
-- Henry La Croix Caramels - simply the best
-- Tea Towels (inscribed w/French wine labels) La Maison Ivre 38 rue Jacob
Metro: St. Germaine des Pres
-- Bon Marche Grande Épicerie: just about everything; it's worth a visit (mustards!)
-- Cute Dog tote bag: Pain Poilâne Boulangerie
-- Apron: E. DEHILLERIN - fabulous cooking store; you could also pick up a copper utensil or butter warmer
-- Perhaps a mounted butterfly, moth or insect from Deyrolle, another 'must see' store upstairs

A lot of cute stores in the St. Germaine area...
JBass1 is offline  
Aug 6th, 2014, 10:18 AM
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Thanks for the suggestions. It's funny; I don't recall ever going into a "souvenir shop" in Paris and have zero recollection of ever seeing one despite multiple visits, so it didn't occur to me for some reason that such a thing would exist in Rome!
indyhiker is offline  
Aug 6th, 2014, 10:30 AM
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They have tons of souvenir shops around the Seine in Paris, and north of Notre Dame, I don't know how you could miss them if you have ever walked along the quay. Plus street vendors around the main things like Eiffel Tower. Even Monoprix and stores like that have souvenirs in them in the center of Paris. I think there are some on the Champs-Elysees, also.

I think souvenirs are, by definition, a remembrance of a place for you, so you should just pick out something you like that means something to you. A gift is something different than a souvenir, as the person hasn't been there. In the souvenir shops in Paris, they do sell these little folding mirrors with decorative tops that are scenes of Paris (or a famous impressionist painting, etc.) They are the size of a small compact. I find them cute and a lot of women like them (or small pill boxes like that. YOu probably could find them elsewhere, but the ones with scenes of Paris are not as likely to be elsewhere.

I got a friend a knife that was shaped like a baguette in a souvenir shop. It looked like a very small baguette but the knife part pulled out of the cover/shell (which was the baguette). She said that would be good for taking camping. It was only about 6-8 inches long.
Christina is offline  
Aug 6th, 2014, 10:50 AM
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Years ago, someone else on this forum suggested purchasing the beautiful tile house numbers from the basement of BHV department store. This is one of my favorite places!! I have also purchased little black & white enamel signs such as "Cave" and "Avocat" and "Chef" for friends and family. The tiles and the signs are made in France. It is really more a french version of Home to visit here!
paris1953 is offline  
Aug 6th, 2014, 11:55 AM
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I brought back tin hot chocolate mugs but can't remember where I got them.nicely decorated little mugs.
HappyTrvlr is offline  
Aug 6th, 2014, 01:00 PM
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I wanted to bring back some marmalade from Scotland but it was confiscated by security at the airport as being over 3 oz. Something to bear mind regarding liquids and gelatinous substances.

We all know terrorists prefer raspberry jam as their weapon of choice.
IMDonehere is offline  
Aug 6th, 2014, 01:04 PM
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We have found Xmas ornaments all over Europe - just look in gift shops. If not we buy things that we can attach hangers to and use those as ornaments!
jamikins is offline  
Aug 6th, 2014, 04:07 PM
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One thing I'm going to look out for this time is kitchen towels -- I like to buy things that are useful and decorative. I also in the past have bought pretty serving trays -- easy to pack at the bottom of a suitcase. I also like to buy tea, my husband stocks up on chocolate, and small grocery items, such as mustard, sea salt in pretty tins, spices, etc. I'm always on the lookout for pretty earrings -- usually inexpensive -- and they are definitely easy to pack.
vanne is offline  
Aug 6th, 2014, 04:16 PM
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I often bring back chocolate for my friends and coworkers... when in Paris my favorite place to buy those in is La Grande Epicerie.

I've also hit a patisserie right before leaving and getting a box of macarons. Now you can get them in North America, but most people enjoy getting something edible.

I too try to buy an ornament whenever I travel... I did get a beautiful horse one last year in Stockholm (we are horse people) but was too scared to put it up in the tree and have one of the cats get to it!!
Ruby99 is offline  
Aug 6th, 2014, 04:57 PM
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PERFUME, of course.
Bedar is offline  

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