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Lately, and I thought this day would never come, I have become apathetic to the shop windows of H&M, Zara, Mango and more. Every time I see something I like in those places, I know now I am bound to see the chick sitting next to me on the metro wearing it too. Their styles as of late…well, it’s the usual Parisian uniform consisting of a blazer or a trench, a skinny pant, maybe tights under some worn cut offs jean shorts, and an original pair of shoes, if your lucky. Colour of choice here? Black.
With the shopping itch hitting hard as the seasons change, I find myself totally uninterested in my usual digs, and with the purse strings tightening, I decided to seek out affordable vintage stores to help heal my wardrobe woes and just go a bit funky with my style. Vintage shopping in Paris however, was not quite what I expected when it came to staying within the budget. Who knew used stuff could be so freaking pricey? THE NERVE of some of Paris’s vintage shops… sucked the fun right out of it.
But, perseverance prevailed and I thought I would to share my latest finds of great vintage fashion in Paris that comes at a great price. Yeah!
The first place is called Violette and Léonie (dépôt vente concept), located on rue de Poitou in the 3rd arrondissement. Treasures such as a Marc Jacobs clutch for 60 euros or Paul and Joe jeans for 40 euros can be found, as well as real vintage stuff like Givenchy dresses for around 100 euros or Balenciaga heesl for about the same price. Blouses and tops range from about 10-40 as a well as skirts and dresses. Coats and outerwear can be a bit more pricey depending on the brand.
The second place, Vintage Desire is also in the Marais at 32 Rue de Rosier, right next to a delicious falafel restaurant. After gorging on a large falafel sandwich, I popped over to Vintage Desire to browse and start the digestion process. More goodies awaited me, including these badass booties I purchased for 15 euros! (ok ok, I know they are black…but different nonetheless!) Less upscale than the previously mentioned shop, this place offers up all kinds of pieces for real cheap, letting you indulge in your funky chic side without have to suffer any guilt when you realize you’ll only wear the thing a handful of times. How liberating!
What the hell is a PACS and why did I get one…
After causing a minor scare on Facebook leading people to believe I was suddenly married, I thought I would take a moment here on my blog to explain just exactly what I have gotten myself into, and why…
In France, one would say “je me suis pacsé” meaning I am pacsed, with a boyfriend or girlfriend, partner, or roommate. However to those living outside of France, the term PACS is meaningless, and when explained as a civil union, becomes automatically interpreted as a marriage. It is most definitely not a marriage, but it closely resembles one in that a contract is signed and registered with a local court recognizing not a matrimonial union, but rather merely cohabitation between two people of differing or same sex.
Thus, for those who do not feel inclined to marry, or cannot legally marry, there is the PACS. With a PACS I can now work, travel, and live in France legally. Hooray!! I can also benefit from the free universal healthcare of the person I pacsed, and we only have to file one set of French taxes!! Double Hooray!! For foreigners looking to settle in France with someone special (who is French – that is the key to this), the PACS lets you do so in a “relatively easy” fashion if you know what you need to so to get one.
So the first thing is that the PACS is not advertised, or hardly advertised on official websites due to the fact that France is laying down the axe on immigrants and making it extremely difficult for foreigners to gain legal status in the country. So below I have included some links for anyone looking to get the gritty details of the PACS, but basically is requires a significant amount of paperwork (giant pain), translating official documents such as recent copies of birth certificates (costly), making appointments.
Lastly, as a foreigner, you must change your legal status in France to obtain the Carte vie privée et familiale – which enables you to stay in France without a visa and give you the right to work etc… This is what is really hard to find information about, and essentially, the PACS, as a marriage, gives you personal ties to France. Ties that according to the French constitution, you are not allowed to be deprived of or deported for that matter… The catch is that you have to have lived at least one year together in order to qualify for it.
So voilà, there it is. PACS 101. Questions are welcome!
As you can see, I haven’t taken the plunge into the world of marriage yet, I’m just legalizing my tushe in France in the hopes of continuing ma petite vie parisienne!!