Sunday, September 14, 2014

France Mood Board

With a mere eight days until my departure to France, I've been wasting away in Michigan, itching to say à bientôt to the United States. But with all of this excitement comes a bit lot of anxiety. Yes, I've spent months at a time without seeing my parents, but the next visit home was always certain. I no longer have this luxury of certainty. I may come home in as little as eight months or in as long as three years, and my family doesn't envision a trip to France in the foreseeable future. Not knowing when I'll see everyone makes me way more anxious than leaving them for a long time. 

However, the exciting things in store for me are just as (if not more) certain as the random bouts of tears that will definitely take place at the airport. Mood boards have been really inspiring me lately, so I thought I'd make one of--you guessed it--France.


Atop one of Pierre-Joseph Redouté's famed botanical illustrations, I've included Caudalie products, pain au chocolat, Reblochon cheese, diptyque, Petit Bateau, and le Petit Nicolas.

I've expressed my interest in Caudalie products many times before, and I'll say it again--I just want to buy and try the entire skin-care line!

No time in France is complete without a visit to the boulangerie for a pain au chocolat (or two...or five...). Literally translating to "chocolate bread," a pain au chocolat is simply a croissant with chocolate rolled up inside. However good you imagine it to be, it's better.

Reblochon is one of the things I miss the most about France. Like most of the best French cheeses, Reblochon is unpasteurized, meaning it's illegal to import into the United States. As soon as I arrive, I plan on buying a hunk of Reblochon to slather onto baguette. (Hint: it tastes even better with preservatives on top!)

diptyque is my favorite home goods company, plain and simple. The candles cost a pretty penny, but they're so worth it. You only need to burn a diptyque candle for 20 minutes in order to fill the entire room with its potent scent. I currently have a small Baies candle, but I also love Feu de Bois, Mimosa, Jonquille, and Roses. You bet I'm visiting the flagship store in Paris!

Petit Bateau (translation: "little boat") is my favorite French clothing line. Again, it's expensive, but the items are classic and well made. During the semi-annual soldes (sales), though, the clothing is much more affordable! As of now, I only have a striped t-shirt and a t-shirt with the same boat pattern as above, but I plan to expand my Petit Bateau as soon as the January sales begin.

And last--but certainly not least--we have Le Petit Nicolas. Every time I go to France, I buy a ton of Petit Nicolas books. As of now, I own close to 750 pages worth of Petit Nicolas stories. If you can read elementary-level French, you need to read this series ASAP. While its target age is elementary school, reading the stories leads to side-splitting laughter. Nicolas is a little boy who gets into all sorts of bêtises (trouble) with his friends, from trying a cigarette to running away from home to playing pranks on the school principal. Try to read it in French, if you're able, as the translation takes something away. And if your French is intermediate or above, you can watch the movie!

Have you tried any of these products or brands? In the comments, let me know what YOUR favorite country is and what inspires you from it!

32 comments:

  1. I just got the Caudalie Dry Oil in my September Birchbox and I'm in love, you should try it if you haven't yet. Good luck on your trip, I look forward to hearing about your adventures in France

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  2. You must eat lots of extra cheese for me! So jealous of all the good food and baked goods you will have in France. I love Laos but I will say Asian food isn't my favorite and their lack of cheese (as in cheese is basically non existent) is quite tragic.

    Can't wait for you to finally be in France!

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  3. EIGHT DAYS! Can you believe the time has come!? I am so excited for you, this experience will be such a rewarding one. Keep us posted! Will keep you in my prayers, and remember, if you ever want to come to Spain for the weekend... you know who to call! ;)

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  4. Um, what do you mean IF? My roommate and I are planning to do Spain following Morocco so we can get a Spanish stamp haha. I'll let you know when-ish that is and we can plan! How long are you there/which city, again? Again, you're welcome in France!

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  5. I understand...I got so caught up with getting ready, too! If I come back to Michigan hopefully I can join another blogger meet-up!

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  6. I've started my love affair with Caudalie. It's amazing. Also, I had a pain au chocolat for breakfast this morning, and it was wonderful. My goal is to get a striped Le Petit Bateau shirt before I leave. I'm in love with France already! I can't believe you are going to be here in 8 short days!

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  7. Love your mood board! I lovelovelove France and everything that you chose is a perfect overview of the country and some of the highlights. Enjoy your time there & bon chance! XO, Nicole @ www.empirestyles.com

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  8. Love this! I'm taking my first semester of French right now. I'm actually struggling with the language, so I admire that you can move there!! Diptyque candles are everything. I completely agree that they're worth the money! The country that inspires me most has to be Australia. It has my namesake city, amazing people and is so so so beautiful! I want to go back so badly!

    I hope you have a wonderful time in France! bonne chance!

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  9. I'm totally loving this mood board. From the pain au chocolat to the Caudalie to the illegal cheese, everything you've picked is awesome. As hard as it is to leave loved ones behind I'm sure your time in France will be filled with amazing adventures!

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  10. 8 days!! This is so exciting!! You're going to have a blast. Also, my goal is to visit you in France while I'm in Europe (!!) and eat a pain au chocolat!

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  11. I adore Petit Bateau! My favorite country is also France, I am a total Francophile!

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  12. YES I AM SO GLAD! What products did you get? :) I want a classic striped Petit Bateau shirt, too--the one I have was stripes of alternating sizes and different shades of blue. Still a classic style, but not THE classic style!

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  13. I'm so glad! What is your favorite part about it?

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  14. Ooooh, how wonderful! There's really nothing better than the first semester of a new language. It's so refreshing! If you need help, don't hesitate to add me on FB or email me, I'm happy to help you! I've never been to Australia but do want to go one day. :) Merci, ma chérie!

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  15. "The illegal cheese"...made me laugh. hehe. Thank you, dear!

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  16. ASHLIEGH YOU BETTER GET YOUR BUTT TO EUROPE THIS YEAR!!! I'm counting on it! And omg forget pain au chocolat, I'll give you chaussons de pommes ("apple slippers," this apple pastry) and fondue and take you to the French Sephora and pharmacies!

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  17. I don't know many other Americans who like the brand, let alone know it! Yay!

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  18. Great mood board! I hope you have a wonderful time in France!

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  19. Ohh, I'm so excited for you! Be sure to eat ALL of the bread while you're there!

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  20. Stop it! You're giving me wanderlust!

    xoxo
    The Accidental Mama
    http://theaccidentalmama.com

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  21. Oh I'm so jealous! How I'd love to visit France!

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  22. France! How fabulous? Is this a temporary or permanent move? Either way, enjoy every single moment you are there!

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  23. Fingers crossed I'll be in Italy by December! OMG FRENCH SEPHORA!? I would practically die in heaven!

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  24. I am totally jealous that you get to visit France! It is one of the places on my bucket list!

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  25. Love French pharmacie skincare. My favorite country is Peru, the culture and food are unique.

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  26. I've heard the Diptyque candles are amazing!! I REALLY want to visit Europe soon :)

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  27. I would love to see an Italy mood board. That's one of my bucket list places to travel to. Although, chocolate croissants are one of my favorites!

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  28. I'd loveeee to get myself to France. And Italy. And everywhere.

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  29. lovely picks! Have a wonderful time in France :) sounds amazing

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  30. You've got a great mood board and congratulations on your trip to France. Have a fabulous stay and I wish to visit there someday :)

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  31. This is such an adorable mood board! France is definitely on my travel wish list. I love your story!

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