Véronique lives with her husband and three young boys in a five-story 1978 brick house in the 15th arrondissement that's more New York than Paris, at least on the outside. "We lived for three years in New York, and we didn't want to leave," says Véronique. "This house, with all the bricks, isn't very Parisian!"
But it's a different story inside the 250m2 space, with its high ceilings, giant cut-out windows, and modern mix of old and new décor that Parisians do particularly well. Antiques from Véronique's family in Lyon or found at brocantes in Normandy or Brittany are juxtaposed with a trio of contemporary white ceramic stools by India Mahdavi and a white curved sofa from Italia B&B. A few of the living room walls are painted in a matte cranberry that shows off groupings of framed art and grounds the room. "What's interesting in this space is the volume," says Véronique. "We like the contrast of heavy color and lots of white so you can breathe."
The result is both sophisticated and child-friendly. On a Sunday morning a few weeks before Christmas, Véronique and her three-year-old son were painting a snow scene on the front windows, and her husband was cutting apples to make a tart. Véronique is a former journalist who now runs Balouga
(see photo above), a gallery/boutique in the Marais that sells pint-sized vintage and reedited designer furniture from the 20th and 21st centuries for chic petits Parisiens, sourced from Europe and the rest of the world. Balouga also produces a collection of evolving desks for growing kids with designers Mahmoud Akram and Matali Crasset.
- Kristin Hohenadel blogging from rue Vieille du Temple, Paris, France. If you have an idea for a European house tour, please write to kristinh @ apartmenttherapy . com