Sunday, June 12, 2016

French Needle Paris 2016 - Day 2

May 24 was still as cold and rainy as the day before, but we didn't care. Because today we will all be checking off an item from our stitchy bucket list: Taking a class at La Maison Lesage.

The Lesage family has been in the business of haute couture, ready-to-wear and accessories since 1924. In 1992, François Lesage opened a school of embroidery, making it possible for anyone with a passion for stitching to come learn. They even have a learning program for someone interested in this field as a profession.

They had many frames out on display, but unfortunately the really gorgeous stuff was in the classroom and we weren't allowed to take pictures there :(

The class that was selected for our trip was a 2-day embroidery class, 6 hours total. I would have preferred a luneville class but those are 12 hours and would have taken time away from the trip. On entering the classroom, we found each of our stations setup on a frame, with scissors and kit ready.

I've always wanted to try out these frames and finally got my chance. It's interesting. We were stitching two at a frame, which is fine since the frame is really wide. I just had trouble with my left arm. It started getting tired because I kept leaving it hovering over the frame. I was too scared to put it on top of the frame, thinking it wouldn't be able to hold. But this things are really solid, I just have to trust it will hold the weight.

We had two teachers for our group of 10. Annie was our teacher and I had loads of fun with her. She is actually French-Canadian and lived not far from where I grew up :) Annie still occasionally comes to Montreal to visit, so I might have a chance to see her again. Here is Annie stitching with Lisa sitting in front of her. Lisa is the owner of the French Needle and the creator of this wonderful trip.

Before leaving we were given the opportunity to buy a frame much like the one we were using and many of us jumped on the opportunity. I also got a book (you all know me). The book is in French and comes with the beads to stitch an adorable pouch. By the way, the frame was 90 euros which is pretty good.

At the end of our first class, we went for lunch. Dessert was amazing as usual.

After lunch we had ourselves a shopping expedition. First at La droguerie, where they have a lovely assortment of beads and buttons.

And I was sent on a mission to find buttons, which I did. My mom wanted buttons to replace the ones she didn't like on a coat.

She also wanted buttons to pretty up blouses and cardigans. The prices were really affordable and the choices were amazing compared to what we have here. I got 8 buttons of the ones below.

I also got pearls. I've always wanted to try bead embroidery with pearls like the work Larissa Borodich does.

The second shop we visited was Mokuba. Mokuba specializes in ribbons and trims. And  they had ALL kinds.

Since we had taken a class at Lesage we were offered the student discount, 65% off!!

Now I'm not really into ribbons. I personally find ribbon embroidery finicky and although it's interesting to learn, it's not my favorite. But still, 65%! how can anyone pass that deal by!

Kristeen picked out these gorgeous ribbons. I just loved her palette and had to snap this picture.

I also had to take a closer picture of their window display. The color combinations are lovely.

Dinner that night was at La Coupole. Done in the Art Deco style, walking into the restaurant was like walking onto the set of Mad Men.

Although the decor itself is in the Art Deco style, they still had some modern pieces.

This dome was painted in 2008 by four different artists. I personally don't get modern art (I'm still trying to figure out if I like it), but you can read more about the decor here.


  1. Oh goodness me, with every post I'm turning a darker shade of green! lol I'm just delighted that everything went so well.

  2. I've now added La droguerie to the list of places I want to go in Paris!

  3. Thank you for the details about your trip. Am enjoying it vicariously!

  4. Oh my goodness - looks divine - love living vicariously through you in Paris!

  5. What an exciting adventure...with all the to have the list too!