Winding down the cobbled streets of Angoulême lies a hidden gem - Le Boudoir de Marguerite. It looks like the sort of shop that only stocks a size 8 and you may need a small mortgage to purchase anything. The clothes are très chic and very French. I never ventured inside, I just admired the colourful window displays from afar - how wrong was I?
The first time I visited the shop was by sheer fluke. I was dog walking with my friend Jackie (Mrs Fit) and our fox terriers H and Jackpott. We had parked down the bottom of an extremely steep hill by the River and I huffed and puffed up the incredibly steep steps to the remparts of the city. We strolled through the café lined courtyards and she said 'let's pop in here'. I was mortified! Donning scruffy dog walking clothes and trainers (very unchic) with a bright red face, we entered the shop. Actually, to be truthful, I hovered outside and got dragged in!!!!
Inside were beautiful clothes, designer shoes and vintage handbags. Not expensive at all but second hand or pre-loved.
There were new things to buy too. Soft leather gloves and beautiful hats draped over rustic wooden tables. Antique display cabinets bursting with exquisite pieces of French jewellery. A tall armoire housed fragrant silver wardrobe pom poms, French perfumes and twinkling trinkets. Designer silk scarves and necklaces flowed out of an open pine box. Nestled by the door was a bijou changing closet with ornate gilded mirrors and a comfy chair for the mari . A selection of newspapers to leisurely peruse - before he digs deep!
I was hooked. The owner Véronique was so welcoming even with my dog. It did help that Jackie is an avid shopper and a very good customer. Véronique didn't seem to mind our 'casual look' and Jackie promptly bought some chic mid heeled, black zipped suede boots and a soft pink bobble hat. H just sat quietly by the racks but Jackpott (still in training) charged around the shop sniffing the shoes and pestering the other customers. He lifted his leg onto a fur coat so I quickly whisked him outside to relieve himself in the street - French style!
It took a while until I plucked up courage to enter the shop again. This time with grammar school husband in tow and myself dressed to the nines. Véronique remembered me immediately and what a welcome. It was Christmas time and we were offered a glass of bubbly whilst I chose some exquisite gifts and a cashmere scarf for myself. Result!!
I am now - a sort of regular. If anyone (femme ou homme) needs to buy a gift which is, well, a little bit different, you can always find something wonderful here. There is always a fantastic welcome from Véronique and it is just impossible to leave without a purchase.
No thank you.
How do you like to shop?
I'm just a Welsh girl living in France- with an uncontrollable writing habit!!!!!
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