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BellaOnline's French Culture Editor

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 F E A T U R E   A R C H I V E  

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Mad Vicky's Tea Gallery
Mad Vicky’s Tea Gallery near Montmartre is a mingling of art forms and creative spirits where rhyme and reason are traded for spontaneity. An art installation served as occasion enough for a basement serenade from Diane Cluck.

Chez Monet – Giverny
Claude Monet spent the last decades of his life in Giverny nurturing a garden from which he painted Impressionist art. Pair a visit to his home and water lily garden with a tour of the American art museum. Afterward, stop in Vernon for a glimpse of half-timbered architecture and a poppy macaron.

Spring Brings Roland Garros - The French Open
Even the cheapest tickets to Roland Garros afford an intimate view. The “Allez!” of encouragement abounds like birdsong as Lacoste-suited officials and thin-armed ball boys scuttle to set the stage on the powdery red clay court. Here are a few tips for passing a Spring day at the French open.

French Fashion Haircuts – How to Avoid Getting One
The difficulty of communicating what you want is only half the battle when you step into a French salon. A coiffeur is an artist and realizing their vision of you is what powers the scissors. I’ve learned to be very articulate in what I expect before the cutting begins.

This is Paris - Children's Book Review
Stroll the avenues taking in landmark architecture and pausing to make acquaintances along the way in Sasek's caricature of the city, This is Paris.

The Macaron
Bakery cases holding macarons arrange the cookie sandwiches into a rainbow of rows in Easter basket hues. Perfumed in flavors like violet, spice bread, and chocolate,they are served in the likes of Paris's Ladurée where they were conceived in the 1930's.

Train to Brussels
Aboard the TGV, french-speaking Belgium is less than an hour and a half away from Paris. Reputed for the confection of chocolate and beer, and its wealth of Art Nouveau architecture, why not steal a weekend away in Brussels?

1920’s Paris Mode : Fashions of les Années Folles
Following the blow of World War I, Paris underwent a period of rebirth. Women celebrated newfound liberty in both the way they carried and costumed themselves. These fashions born from the 20's, now on exhibit at the Musée Galliera, are timeless. Infuse your style with some of their extravagance.

Abusing the Right to Strike
Take to the streets. Raise your signs and voices in a chorus of contempt. The habitually flaunted right to strike falls second only to tennis as the French national pastime. During a grève, those motivated to work must forage passage as metro grills close and trains are annulled.

La Fleche d'Or - Free Live Music in Paris
The Fleche d'Or is a rare club that offers a diverse scheduling of music, several shows booked into an evening, all free to those willing to line up. I arrived early for a serenade from songbird Alela Diane on the dawn of the release of her album in Europe.

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