Bohemian Jewelry in Paris
Medecine Douce is a chic and trendy jewelry line that can be found in boutiques across the world. But if you’re looking for the birthplace of these bohemian treasures, search no further than right here in Paris. Marie Montaud launched the line in 2000 and has opened an atelier boutique in the 10th Arrondissement, in the heart of an area known for Parisian stock stores. The line’s signature piece is the Charleston necklace, which initially helped build momentum for the brand. The Parisian jewelry pieces were featured in fashion magazines, chic boutiques and department stores like Le Bon Marché. After gaining some recognition within the fashion world, Montaud teamed up with the likes of Christian Lacroix, Anès B. and Colette, the distinguished Parisian boutique, to create a line with each. Medecine Douce typically produces two collections a year and is known for its genius in pairing unexpected materials.
The atelier boutique, located on the rue de Marseille, houses the collections within a modern, simple space that focuses the attention on the pieces. Light fills the white interior, creating a relaxed, joyful shopping experience. Stuffed rabbits, perched on the display table, wear the beautiful necklaces, showing the fun/campy attitude of the designer, while the fur also helps the beautiful colors pop. From outside the store, both the retail space and the employees at work on the jewelry are visible. The retail area is separated from the work space by a semipermanent wall: displaying the final product next to where it was created serves as a reminder of the handmade quality of Medecine Douce’s pieces, as well as the attention and effort required to create this delicately beautiful line.
The pieces themselves are made of gold and silver, and this season’s collection incorporates cotton cordage and leather feathers. A trip to South America influenced this line, with vibrant reds, blues and greens. Montaud also looked to Native American culture for inspiration, which is evident in the leather feathers and the Dante necklace, which evokes images of arrowheads. This necklace is my personal favorite because of its perfect day-to-night capability, and it’s available in a shorter choker style or a longer bohemian style as well. These various influences all come together in different pieces, especially the Dahlia, which was specifically inspired by Frida Kahlo and her signature floral hairstyles. The vibrant colors taken from the South American cultures are contrasted with more neutral tones like beige, white and a subdued crimson.
If you’re in the 10th, stop by this unique atelier boutique, as you’ll surely find something perfect for any occasion, and appreciate the work that went into whatever beautiful piece you choose.
10, rue de Marseille, in the 10th Arrondissement.
01 48 03 57 28.
Editor’s note: Do you know that we have two very special walks through Paris, one that covers Jackie O.’s Paris and one centered around Audrey Hepburn’s Paris? Rediscover Paris with Jackie or Audrey on your next visit. The walks are available as downloadable pdfs and as apps for iPhones and Android phones.