Monday, 25 October 2010

44 Rue François 1er

i spent the last weekend in paris, and one of the things on my agenda was to visit balmain's store at 44 rue françois 1er. there was this piece that i wanted but they don't have it in london so the special visit. yes, i did get the piece i wanted. that aside, i wondered how the parisian flagship would look like. based on what i've seen on their womenswear shows, i expected a store with really dark wooden interiors, loud music and dim mood lighting. i couldn't be anymore wrong than that: the store was actually really light and airy, very old parisian chic but with modern touches here and there. i was really pleasantly surprised.

but amazing decor aside, i feel something is lacking. the lady that attended to me was very sweet, but the overall feeling from everyone was very lukewarm. considering we were in there for about a good hour or so, an offering of an aperitif would have been personable. it's the little little things and gestures that puts the fun back into brick and mortar shopping. ok maybe it was me, it was drizzling outside and i wasn't exactly dressed to the nines, and i was a little under the weather and my nose resembling a running tap.

but they offered to send my jacket to my hotel, which was a nice gesture. experiences aside, here are a few pics from joseph dirand, architect of the balmain store on 44 rue françois 1er.

many thanks to arnaud for informing me about mr dirand and his work for the balmain store. a few more pics, and more from his portfolio at

pics credit: joseph dirand



  1. I LOVIT TOTAL!!!....

  2. I was there earlier this year, couldn't agree more on the lukewarm, the SA (Eyla) attended to me was nice too, she offered to send the pending piece to me once arrived. General speaking, they offered the 'standard' cold attitude/service that you get in any hi-end store in Paris.

    I wouldn't expect aperitif though, a drink maybe...

    Two brands' service that impressed me in Paris are Acne (Palais Royal) and both Pierre Hardy shops.

  3. Why are stores so snobbish these days~~ ? And how I wish to have a closet like this

  4. well now i know why they charge over £1000 for a ripped cotton vest.

  5. Are you gonna tell us what you bought!? So curious!

  6. So did you get caught in the protest we have been seeing on t.v ? see any protesters in Paris ?

  7. yeah, i wanna see what you got yourself. show! show! haha!! the store's design is nice but it seems cols as well, like their staff as you said.

  8. Store looks beautiful, it's a shame the clothes are (despite the most strenuous attempts at justification) still a joke.


what's he wearing?