Exploring Plainpalais

June 15, 2015 • Food and DrinkGenevaKidsTravel

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when we decided to start a family together, my husband and i promised each other not to let it change us too much. after all, being parents doesn’t have to stand in the way of your passions. instead we vowed to share our interests and lifestyle with our kids from early on, so that they’d become part of our lives, not the other way around. but the first two months with juliet were a lot more challenging than expected, and after a while i started panicking – was this it? was my life always going to be like this? i felt cooped up in our apartment because going anywhere with a hysterically crying baby was not my idea of having a good time. for a brief moment, i even thought – help, what have i done? i loved my life before and was scared that i’d never be able to travel or do fun stuff again.

of course i was wrong, and i see now that i got carried away by a combination of hormones, sleep deprivation and the guilt i felt when we were not able to take away juliet’s pain. she’s doing so much better now, and it feels as if we have started breathing again. we traveled to belgium to be with our family and friends, and we took juliet to our favorite places, slowly introducing her to our roots and loved ones. when we got back to switzerland, we finally picked up our lives again. this weekend, we went to explore our favorite neighborhood in geneva.

plainpalais is definitely the most creative and ‘happening’ area in town. about half a year ago, it welcomed geneva’s very first third wave coffee bar, BIRDIE. right across the street i bumped into OU BIEN ENCORE, a new cute lunch place and foodie shop. a bit further down the street you’ll find one of our favorite restaurants, CAFE DES BAINS and the beautiful MEG museum with its lovely café and garden. it’s definitely my favorite place to while away the hours during the weekend, and i was pleasantly surprised to discover that having a baby doesn’t need to change that. we took juliet with us in her BUGABOO CAMELEON, and she was perfectly content during our walk. i wish she would nap more easily on the go, but when she got super tired and didn’t want to give up the fight against her sleepiness, i could rock her into a little nap while drinking my cortado at birdie.

it felt really good to be able to spend our time the way we wanted to, and to just wing it with juliet. we always bring everything we need to prepare her bottles so we can feed her anywhere, and we’ve become experts in folding and unfolding her stroller quickly and efficiently, without losing too much time. so this will definitely not be the last time we go out exploring with her.

OU BIEN ENCORECAFE DES BAINSBIRDIEMEGslip-ons by GAPjeans by 7 for all mankind via FRANCIS FERENTshirt by ZARApurse by PROENZA SCHOULERjuliet’s dress by ZARA MINIjuliet’s headband by HAPPY LEONIEphotos by stephanie duval and matthias rabaey

a little while ago, i got an email from one of flanders’ most popular women’s magazines – FLAIR – to ask if i would be interested in sharing some pictures of our interior with some of my favorite tips and tricks for home design. it actually came at a very weird time for me, as we were smack in the middle of deciding whether we wanted to move and where to. i ended up taking a whole bunch of new photos of our tiny geneva apartment, as i realized it might be the last chance i’d ever have. and right i was – this past monday, we locked down a new apartment for us to go live in from october 1st.

of course you’ll hear all about it (for now, let me just say that yes, we are staying in switzerland, and yes, we will have a (partial) view on the mont blanc from where we will live) but for now i wanted to take the opportunity of the flair issue coming out this week to say a proper goodbye to our old place. i’ve loved living here – on and off for a year and then permanently for two. and even though it is tiny, it had everything we needed and wanted, and we have really felt at home here. as excited as i am to start a new chapter in our lives abroad, i will be a little sad to close the door behind us.

luckily i get to bring all my design goodies with me to our new place. i’ve had some questions about some of the objects mentioned in instagram snaps that i’ve shared, so i decided to go full-on catalogue on you and try to share as many brands and shops as i can remember, but don’t hesitate to drop me a line in the comments if anything should be unclear!

BEDROOM – string shelf // fermliving planter // our/berlin vodka // sigurd larsen cement letter // muji calendar // byredo candle // uashmama basket // ork posters manhattan and brooklyn // HOME OFFICE – monomini luck poster // new york sleeps by christopher thomas // ohdierliving nerd sign // luceplan costanza lamp via master meubel // hay marble chop block via hay antwerp // artemide tolomeo lamp via master meubel // banter banner #stephandmatti // serax antonino sciorentino lamp // serax wire basket // serax cement planters and geo object // winkreative design stories by gestalten // the kinfolk table by nathan williams // plenty by yotam ottolenghi // LIVING ROOM – bold and noble typographic poster // ikea couch // pillows from p-lo, gewoon and bruka // zara home plaid throw // underscore striped throw via ezisliving // luceplan costanza lamp via master meubel // snowpuppe lamp // vitra eames chairs via master meubel // ikea tv console // vitra eames bird // serax wine bottle vases // wind light via magazyn // tivoli radio // muuto felt basket via espoo // calendar poster via cocolapinedesign //
KITCHEN – serax catherine lovatt ceramics // mason shaker via comptoir des objets // serax glass bottle // aesop handwash and cream


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my name is stephanie duval, and i am a storyteller. this blog is where i share my favorite stories about design, travel, fashion and the nice things in life.


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matthias deckx