Design

A Tiny Guide to Paris Shopping  

Bon Marche...best department store ever! Check out more Paris shopping recommendations on machine washable whimsy

A comprehensive guide to shopping in Paris would require a textbook, not a blog post. Here are just a few of my favorites to start with, and you can explore the lovely Parisian streets and find your own faves!

Le Bon Marché is a lovely old department store in the Left Bank that puts all other department stores to shame. It’s largely unaffordable but oh so pretty. The building is beautiful and merchandise displays are incredibly creative and appealing. Make sure to visit the homewares level.
Paris shopping faves from machinewashablewhimsy.com. photo courtesy of LVMHParis shopping faves from machinewashablewhimsy.com. photo courtesy of LVMHParis shopping faves from machinewashablewhimsy.com. photo courtesy of LVMHBon Marche...best department store ever! Check out more Paris shopping recommendations on machine washable whimsyFirst 3 photos courtesy of LVMH

 

NAF NAF, Kookai, and Caroll:

These three chains are all owned by the same company, and all sell high-quality, stylish women’s clothes at reasonable prices. I go to these shops first in Paris and most of my favorite clothing are from these three! Each one has its own style and intended audience but I’ve found great buys at all of them.

NAF NAF is geared towards a younger crowd, with colorful apparel that’s trendy and fresh but very tasteful. The decor in the stores is worth going in to see!

Kookai‘s clothing is also bright and super stylish, but slightly more mature and probably geared toward 20-somethings. They have lots of classy and cute tops and dresses, and a great selection of scarves so you can really look Parisian!

Caroll is the most classic of the three, selling more mature pieces that are classy and very well-made. A great shop for stylish, tailored clothing that won’t go out of style.

 

Sabre has several little boutiques in Paris selling adorable homewares, including their signature rainbow of plastic flatware in multiple sizes, shapes, and finishes. Colorful, durable, and relatively inexpensive, I’ve bought several of their spoons and serving pieces and love them. They also sell great mugs, dishes, and other tableware.

IMG_8426.jpghopping faves in Paris, from machine washable whimsyIMG_8428.jpg

 

LE BHV MARAIS (or just BHV, pronounced bay-ash-vay) is a huge department store in Le Marais. They’ve got lots of clothes, shoes, and accessories across a reasonable but not cheap price range. It’s the stationary, fine arts, and creative hobbies floor that really gets me excited…they’ve got a huge variety of gorgeous paper goods and art supplies down there. I bought two little notebooks as a gift when I was there and they provided a sweet gift bag too! The homewares floor is lovely as well.

Paris shopping faves from machinewashablewhimsy.com. photo courtesy of LE BHV MARAIS

FullSizeRender 28IMG_8469.jpg

Bombata laptop cases at BHV are retro and adorable! My mom has an orange one and gets compliments every time she uses it.

FullSizeRender-29.jpg

Exterior photo courtesy of BHV
Paris shopping faves, featuring Le Bon Marche, Kookai, BHV, and more! Paris is the perfect city for shopping and bringing home lots of gifts, clothing, accessories, and homewares. Great destination for style! Check out machine washable whimsy for more!

 

Blogging Freebies Roundup!


There are so many free goodies available now to help bloggers. Here’s a big list of the best ones that I’ve found!

Many of these are from blogs that require you to sign up for their email list before you can download the freebie. If you’re hesitant to do that, remember that you can always unsubscribe! If the freebie looks good, there’s a good chance that the emails will be interesting too, and you may just discover a new go-to source of information or inspiration!

This list isn’t comprehensive. That would be nearly impossible because there is just soooo much out there now! But here are some offers that looked particularly good to me or that I use myself. 

Blogging Freebies Roundup! Here's a huge list of some of the best freebies available that you can use for your blog or business! Check out machine washable whimsy for more! photo credit: IvoryMix #girlboss #sidehustle #blog #blogging #freebies

Blog Planning:


Free Stock Photos:

 

Resource Libraries:

There are so many resource libraries to choose from! The best part is, you don’t have to choose because they’re all free! Many, many blogs offer access to a “library” of downloadable freebies when you subscribe to the blog. Here are my picks:

 Blogging Freebies Roundup! Here's a huge list of some of the best freebies available that you can use for your blog or business! Check out machine washable whimsy for more! photo credit: IvoryMix #girlboss #sidehustle #blog #blogging #freebies

 

Free Classes:

 
Social Media Help: 
Blogging Freebies Roundup! Here's a huge list of some of the best freebies available that you can use for your blog or business! Here are some of the lovely social media icons available online. Check out machine washable whimsy for more!
  • Here’s an extensive list of Pinterest group boards that you may want to join. http://www.justasimplehome.com/blogging/ultimate-list-of-pinterest-group-boards/
  • A detailed social media calendar to help plan your social media content. http://www.marketingsolved.com/31-days-of-social-media-content/
  • A bunch of free Pin It buttons–but more importantly a tutorial on how to add them to your blog.  https://www.whitecornercreative.com/free-pinterest-pin-it-buttons-how-to-add-them/
  • I can’t promise that all of these are free, but here’s a great Pinterest board filled with loads of beautiful icons to choose from.   https://www.pinterest.com/raphaellegv/ic%C3%B4nes-rs-social-media-icons/
  • Free, downloadable social media icons, in a huge variety of colors! http://www.carrieloves.com/2012/12/free-social-media-icons-updated/
  • Watercolor social media icons…there are many available but these caught my eye.   http://curlymade.blogspot.ca/2014/11/free-watercolor-social-media-icons-blog.html
  • Gold, glittery social media icons!                                                                         http://designyourownblog.com/how-to-add-a-gold-leaf-or-glitter-texture-to-your-blog/

 

Other Stuff:

 

Enjoy!

Blogging Freebies Roundup! Here's a huge list of some of the best freebies available that you can use for your blog or business! Check out machine washable whimsy for more! #girlboss #sidehustle #blog #blogging #freebies

 

 

A Jewel Box of Cakes

I’ve never done any cake decorating myself, but I have a huge interest for cake and pastry design. (See my Pinterest board for proof!) It’s a fresh and fun art form and I love seeing the abundance of creativity and talent out there.

Here are some of the prettiest cakes I’ve seen, inspired by the vivid colours of gemstones.

Garnet:

garnet

Source: Style Me Pretty

Alexandrite:

A Jewel Box of Cakes, featuring beautiful cakes inspired by the vivid colors of gemstones. Check out machinewashablewhimsy.com for more!SourceGreen Wedding Shoes

Aquamarine:

Romantic Wedding Ideas with Pops of Jewel Tones - photo by Jillian Rose Photography http://ruffledblog.com/romantic-wedding-ideas-with-pops-of-jewel-tones

Source: Ruffled

Emerald:

emerald

Source: Style Me Pretty

Opal and Ruby:

opal-and-ruby

Source: Sugar Bee Sweets

Topaz:

topaz

Source: Three Tiers for Cake

Rose Quartz:

rose-quartz

Source: Style Me Pretty

Amethyst:

amethyst-and-sapphire

Source: Green Wedding Shoes

Sapphire:

sapphire

Source: Ruffled

Tourmaline:

A Jewel Box of Cakes, featuring beautiful cakes inspired by the vivid colors of gemstones. Check out machinewashablewhimsy.com for more! Photo from Style Me Pretty

Source: Style Me Pretty

Citrine:

alexandrite and citrine

Source: The Perfect Palette

It’s like jewellery…hard to choose!

 

 

Hotel Review: The Confidante Miami Beach

Hotel Review: The Confidante Miami Beach, from machinewashablewhimsy.com #travel #hotel #miami

Best. Pool. Ever.

One nice thing about traveling to a city you’ve already visited is the lack of pressure to “do it all.” When we were in Miami last week, we used some Hyatt points to stay at this lovely hotel, The Confidante. On our first morning we discovered the pool…and pretty much parked ourselves there until we checked out two days later! We literally sat on our chaise lounges for two days. It was awesome. 

Processed with Snapseed.Processed with Snapseed.

The landscaping is beautiful and they have a separate adults-only pool. It was peaceful and the service was excellent.

Processed with Snapseed.

Hotel Review: The Confidante Miami Beach, from machinewashablewhimsy.com #travel #designThey have these lovely little cabanas which cost a fortune to rent, but if they’re available and you ask the pool manager nicely, you might get to hang out there for free. We were lucky 🙂Processed with Snapseed.

Then there are some even fancier cabanas! These come with big screen TVs and free food.

Processed with Snapseed.

The design of the whole hotel is retro and colorful, but not over-the-top. I loved the color combos in the restaurant and public spaces.

Hotel Review: The Confidante Miami Beach, from machinewashablewhimsy.com @washablewhimsy #travel #design

Processed with Snapseed.Processed with Snapseed.

The room was comfortable but lacked space to unpack. It was well-designed but not as comfy or interesting as the public spaces of the hotel. The Jonathan Adler toiletries were nice and we had a side-balcony room with views of the ocean and the Miami skyline.

Hotel Review: The Confidante Miami Beach, from machinewashablewhimsy.com @washablewhimsy #travel #design

Overall we had a great experience at The Confidante. The service, design, and location (41st St and Collins Ave. in Miami Beach) were all great…but the pool took the prize! 🙂

 

10 Beautifully Designed Hotel Lobbies

10 Beautiful Hotel Lobbies, from machinewashablewhimsy.com

Whether you go for minimalist or ultra-luxurious, here are some hotel lobbies with great design to lure you in. This may just influence your travel bucket list!

Doesn’t the 1 Hotel South Beach  have the quintessential Miami Beach lobby? This space looks so cozy, clean, and…beachy.

1-south-beach

Check out the lighting!! The Corinthia Hotel London does a great job at classy, stylish interiors.corinthia

The Loews Regency New York does modern luxe just as a cool New York hotel should.

loews-regency

I love how the lobby of the Mandarin Oriental Barcelona is so clean and modern but without any cold minimalism–it looks very comfy.

mandarin-oriental-barcelona

Could this be the perfect Paris hotel lobby? Gold, dark wood, and shiny marble blend together for the perfect mix of contemporary and classic at The Peninsula Paris.

peninsula-final

The lobby at the Dream Downtown hotel feels world’s away from NYC busyness. A drink and a newspaper, anyone?

dream hotel nyc.jpg

I love the bright, homey vibes in the Mendeli Street Hotel  in Tel Aviv.

mendeli-st-hotel-tel-aviv

The W Guangzhou is super cool, I must say! This reception area makes a strong first impression.

w-ganghzou

The lobby lounge of the Novotel Suites Den Haag City Centre looks like such fun! It’s a great place to tap into your “young at heart” playfulness.

Novotel Suites Den Haag City Centre

Classic classiness at its best at The Langham Chicago. Big windows let in lots of light and make for a cheerful atmosphere in the modern space.

The langham chicago.jpg

Soooo…where will you be checking in next?