Is the «Advent calendar» your thing? Those little windows to be opened every day between December 1st and 24th to get you to Christmas… Is it a girlie thing or just for kids? L’Acharnœur invites you to join in Saturday to prove the opposite. In the meantime, read our 4th issue, available until December 25th. The first gift of many?



  • Cal11

    11 décembre, bien-être... Pour profiter des mains expertes de Valentine Doky, la masseuse qui fait craquer de nombreux parisiens, appelez aujourd'hui le 06 65 04 42 18. Prenez un rendez-vous avant le 31 janvier 2013. Le massage relaxant pour femme ou homme à base d'huiles essentielles de 1h15 vous sera proposé à 65€ au lieu de 80€. Pour en savoir plus sur le Calendrier de l'Avent de l'Acharnœur

  • 04- Respect

    Photo © Cassander Eeftinck Schattenkerk


It only lasts a few minutes. But the minutes are so poetic and so strange that they force our admiration. These few minutes are the work of Berndnaut Smilde who creates real clouds in closed, empty spaces. Sculptures that take shape and dissolve before our eyes. 
His first attempt, Nimbus, dates from 2010, in an artistic test laboratory in Arnhem in the Netherlands. He repeated the performance last spring with Nimbus II, in bigger more «public» locations such as a gallery in Hoorn, a chapel… How are these ephemeral installations made? It takes a subtle combination of humidity, smoke, lighting and point of view, all precisely studied by the artist. Few people are allowed to attend the show but the miniature clouds have been immortalised by different photographers making the instants even more disturbing. It’s not surprising that this performance is listed as one of the inventions of the year 2012 for Time magazine.

Berndnaut Smilde is not the only artist whose living entities appear fleetingly to fascinate us with lightness. Recently, Michel Blazy captivated us with his cascading mousse at the Collège des Bernardins. But these are actual clouds. Airborne cotton candy we want to dive into. They evoke infinity but also something impalpable, an inaccessible serenity. This time, they appear inside a room. They are both real and dream-like; they invite us «in» to take us away.

Even if Berndnaut Smilde’s intention was to create a disturbing situation in a deserted place, that is not what stayed in our minds after seeing these images. What remained was a daring feat that pushed us outside our everyday, earth-bound vision. As if everything was possible. No mean achievement.

Bianca Alberti


For further informations : www.berndnaut.nl


  • 04- Beurk

    Photo © Odile Berthemy


Strange conversations between friends. Some subjects appear to have become taboo. The culprit: the easy short-cuts behind the particle «anti». You can’t say anything anymore. You are left-wing? Then you are anti-rich. Right-wing? You are anti-social aid. For Sarkozy? You are anti-Hollande. For Hollande? You are anti-Sarko. For gay marriage? Anti-traditional marriage. Against? Anti-modern marriage. Even lighter subjects don’t escape. So we avoid the subject, so as not to fall out with those close to us, to take things too far and in the process, damage sincere and profound relationships. This state of play is no exaggeration. Asking around, many people are in the same situation. How did it come to this? The verb «to stigmatise» hasn’t helped; it tends to end a conversation. Without actually stigmatising anything at all, it creates an amalgam. The social networks have their part to play. Our thoughts can be tweeted in anger a little too quickly. Often without distance or restraint. We go from freedom of expression to venting, insults… And our politicians are not necessarily setting an example. 

We are no longer just convinced, we are categorical. The only problem is, when you take a stance, there is no such thing as black or white. There are many shades of grey in between. Dark grey, light grey, French grey, blue grey, pigeon grey, Charleston grey, pearl grey, charcoal grey, stone grey, wolf grey… enough to realise that there are plenty of nuances in each story. To bring or listen. Points of view to share to try to understand, convince but also to rethink or tone down our convictions. This is the only way for our minds to evolve.

This is all the more important as no one knows what’s going on in a discussion where all minefields must be avoided. It is no longer a question of political correctness, it is discussion burial. So can we leave the rudeness, the narrow mindedness and the intolerance in the closet and go back to being open and sincere? At least between friends. Bordel.

Virginie Achard



Everyone has their own Americans. 

For Philippe Labro there are fifty. For Philippe Séclier there’s only one.

Labro’s «Mon Amérique» by the journalist-filmmaker-writer, is a long gallery of portraits in which we come across the inevitable icons. From Fred Astaire to Orson Welles via Humphrey Bogart, Marilyn Monroe, Ernest Hemingway, John Kennedy, Edward Hopper, Elvis Presley, Ralph Lauren… A magnificent album. A sort of visitor’s book with all of the author’s favourite visitors from across the pond.
Séclier’s «Un voyage américain» by the journalist-photographer, is a 20 000 km-long journey on the trail of one 88-year-old man, Robert Frank. Or more to the point his mythical book of photos «Americans» published in 1958. Anonymous Americans this time, at the time of racial segregation. The DVD comes with a booklet on the backdrop to the low-budget, high-talent documentary. And there is a map of the U.S….
Because the road is the real hero in Séclier’s epic. Following in the steps, or the wheels of the beat generation. The road you take to find yourself. Or to run away. Like all those road movies depicting the wanderings of the American dream.
Of course Jack Kerouac springs to mind. Strangely, he isn’t on Labro ‘s list.

Everyone has their own America.

Maurice Achard

A book, a film, a piece of music... a few years, decades or centuries later. When culture never stops blooming.
  • 04- Floraison

    Éditions Pocket


Have you ever imagined what your life would be like if you were an ant? «Bad Karma» by David Safier provides a vision of it that would make you want to come back as a cow. Luckily he includes that one too. Through the novel, his heroine, Kim Lange is reincarnated in different beings, some enjoyable, some not so much according to the good karma she has accumulated in each life.

 While the story may seem surrealistic, even for the Buddhists whose religion inspired the novel, this aspect fades quickly as the amusing plots takes over: what will Kim Lange reappear as, what will happen, how will she survive… and above all, is she going to come back as a human? Because the whole objective is to get back to her husband and daughter who she neglected when she was alive. Don’t worry, that wasn’t a spoiler! The back cover tells you much more! Don’t worry either that the story has a moral on what is «good or bad», «important or futile». It’s just good writing. 

Maybe this novel is not a classic of the future, but it is definitely a find that’s good to share. The type of book you can open as a sceptic but once you’re in, you look forward to taking the bus, the metro or getting into bed. It is truly unputdownable, funny, surprising and moving. It is such a pleasure to let oneself be taken along. 

«Bad Karma» is David Safier’s first novel and it was a bestseller in his native Germany. If this information isn’t enough to convince you, we’re going to read his other novels anyway. Between «Sors de ce corps, William !» (Get out of that body, William !), «Jésus m’aime» (Jesus loves me) or «Sacré famille» (Happy family), the titles don’t scare us anymore so we’re going for «Jésus m’aime». Any believers out there?

Marie Veyrier



His digital tableaux telescope his photos of urban architecture and industrial sites into phantasmagorical landscapes. Vertical compositions that blend an American universe with an Alpine universe, crossing train lines, ready to escape. A beautiful journey by Bruno Poletto.

  • 04- Foodoir

    Photo © Odile Berthemy


One ham n’ cheese, one!  Here’s your sandwich. One ham n’ cheese, one! Here’s your crepe. Two French specialities, one Parisian, one Breton. The two foodstuffs have nothing in common but they seem to go well together, satisfying our taste buds and filling our stomachs. 

Ham comes from the thigh of an animal, mostly from a pig, but it can be from a wild boar, young or old – or even a bear or a reindeer in Nordic countries. Cured ham wears regional dress, like the jambon d’Auvergne or Bayonne in France, the prosciutto d’Aosta or Parma in Italy, or York ham in Great Britain. In Spain, the Serrano comes down the mountain (sierra). Cooked ham can be cooked in different ways, roasted, grilled, braised and most often boiled, what the French call «jambon de Paris» or even «diet ham». It is better when cooked in a cloth or «on the bone».

Ham was a royal dish during the Roman empire, then in the Middle Ages. Perhaps today it needs to be brought back to its former glory. 

As for cheese, it contributes to the good or bad reputation of the French, a country that is considered ungovernable due to the diversity of its cheeses (300 according to the Général De Gaulle, or even 365 according to others, one for every day of the year). But this is what makes the wealth of the country, the natives love it and the tourists find it amusing. It offers a palette of flavours that are more or less pleasant, compositions that are more or less reassuring, especially when the maggots or the traces of mould start to appear. It’s the war on bacteria. So to be safe, we are told to eat pasteurised cheeses (tasteless), while research shows that we should protect the biodiversity of our germs in order to fight listeria! Ah, the poetry of cheese !

And if it doesn’t exactly rhyme with ham, we won’t get too cheesy ! But they do form an excellent duo.


For an exceptional «ham & cheese» experience come to our next Gastronomy Confidential tasting




They are two popular TV quiz shows orchestrated by two little television geniuses, jingles and all. They look as alike as two flat screens but they are far from flat: their respective contents complete each other.

In «Une Famille en or» presented by Christophe Dechavanne on TF1, two teams have to get as close as possible to the previous answers by a panel of 100 French people. So they need to show how intuitive they are in comparison with the «average» general knowledge of the population. So, what does the word canteen make you think of ? The answer was school. Not necessarily that easy, a lot of people eat in canteens at work too.
In «Tout le monde veut prendre sa place» presented by Nagui on France 2, you need to really know your Corneille from your Racine. Not so easy, it’s been a while since French literature class…

In both cases, the candidates tend to break down our hard-earned prejudices about this type of entertainment. As if we had to learn about ourselves with them. Because, of course they are addictive, you end up testing your own general knowledge «from top to bottom». Just to know…

So, you inevitably find yourself trapped by one of the «tests» on the programme… You take your time, try to answer… But in this case, the complementary timing – one late morning, the other early evening – is particularly instructive.
Even both presenters have gained a certain finesse. Their wit and repartee is lighter than of old. The way they accompany the contestants is more convivial. They don’t treat them as objects to be pigeon-holed.

We didn’t see that coming.



To access more informations about the one-off
or limited edition items, click on the different windows!

Lord SM - 180€

Lord SM was set up in 2009, and making luxury from vintage is something they know. It all began with the designer reworking morning suits to make them more « Rock Couture ». Slowly but surely she let her inspiration develop with scarves, bags, leather jackets, tunics, dresses… The terms « Union Jack » or « Mini Jack » are used for the scarves only she knows the secret to. Her « Ring of Fire » scarves are the stuff dreams are made of and we have a total crush on her fringed bags. Her pieces already have a cult following and her Spring/Summer 2013 collection was presented at Tranoï. The world is Lord SM’s oyster.



A Mini-Jack in vintage fabric and noble materials. Silk, cotton voile, silk velvet and leather all blended in a unique patchwork. The cut is the result of hours of work, stitching and imagination, which makes it adaptable to all shapes. The model is unisex and universal. 100% made in Paris, 100% Lord SM. New pieces available in the same shades.


One-off piece. Price: 180 € taxes inclued

Mini-Jack unisexe Lord SM.


- Silk, cotton voile, silk velvet, leather, cotton patchwork…
- 60x60 cm
- Folded in a triangle

Uni&Vintage -198€

Behind Uni&Vintage is the eye and imagination of one Christine Ekodo-Delaunay. So, what is her USP? She cuts up vintage clothes, scarves and fabrics, puts them together if needed with a specially dyed satin to help the fabrics blend and makes an entirely new piece. Skirts, shirts, trousers, tunics: the Uni&Vintage line proposes exclusive cuts that fall differently according to colours and prints. As a result, each design is unique and numbered as part of a broader collection.



A vintage Lanvin headscarf, satin dyed in verdigris, a « kimono » cut, together form the skirt specially made for l’Acharnœur. The multitude of colours blend delicately as the bands superimpose with modernity. The inner belt is adaptable so the skirt falls perfectly on everyone regardless of size. The outer belt dresses the entire waist for an ultra-refined effect. This piece is number 1045 of the Uni&Vintage brand.


One-off piece. Price: 298€ taxes inclued

Uni&Vintage silk and satin skirt. Piece number 1045.


- Front and outer belt: vintage Lanvin headscarf 100 % silk 
- Back and inner bands: 66% satin and 33% cotton 
- Kimono belt
- Size 2

Émilie Beaussart

Émilie Beaussart’s family have been shoe designers for two generations. And not just from father to daughter. So her passion for footwear came naturally. She first worked as a designer at Yves Saint-Laurent, before launching her own brand a year ago. Her designs are completely hand-made in a Parisian workshop using noble, supple materials to guarantee lightness but above all comfort. Her first collection includes modern designs that are both poetic and obsession-inducing, but always reflect a woman of character.




Among her limited edition models, we have chosen these ankle boots in calfskin and black patent leather. The arch is measured to keep up with the daily rush of the city dweller. The ankle strap is an original aesthetic touch that keeps the foot perfectly balanced. The curves of the boots and the patent leather are particularly feminine. The pompom and the contrast in materials, between matt and light, bring a note of classicism and mystery.


Limited edition, made to order. Price: 595€ taxes inclued

Other photos available on request


- Black calfskin with patent leather detail
- Leather soles and lining
-125 mm heel with 25 mm inner platform for more comfort
- Zip interior
- Completely hand-made in a workshop in Paris

Opalis Paris

Since 2001, Opalis Paris has been making hair products that are light years away from the usual aggressive formulae foisted upon us by big industry. Their plant-based and silicon-free shampoos, creams, oils and lotions give off odours that would melt an ice-floe. Another point in their favour, there is no waiting period and they protect and repair our hair like nothing on earth. We’ve been fans for years, we swear by their products and we’re not alone; plenty of stars and women’s magazines have come out in their favour recently.



A shampoo and conditioner... When you buy these two products, Opalis will give you a Booster hair treatment. This treatment, to be enjoyed in the Institut Opalis, has been specially developed to prepare your hair by removing all impurities. You will relax in the hands of an expert and learn the key gestures to optimise the application and benefits of each product. There is no date-limit on this hour-long treatment.

Limited edition offer. Price: 72€ taxes inclued

Institut Opalis - 63, rue de Ponthieu 75008 Paris. www.opalisparis.com


- The 150 ml shampoo. Options: for greasy hair with essential oils of thyme and rosemary, for dry hair with orange flower water, anti-dandruff with cade oil or for normal hair with Lavender essential oil. 
- The 200 ml conditioner with macadamia oil, wheat germ and sweet almond oil
- The Booster treatment, to be booked in the institute.
All informations : www.opalisparis.com

Vanessa Deutsch

Hats, bandeaus, hair bands, caps... Vanessa Deutsch is a passionate hat designer who reinvents all types of head gear. Her credo: originality, practicality and elegance. Not to mention quality. Vanessa Deutsch’s has exacting standards in terms of materials, when she doesn’t make them herself, and she still does some of the stitching. Her true skills reveal unexpected collections that can dress even the most resistant heads! Hats off!



Among her greatest hits: the Jane hair band. Two leaves, one on the left, one on the right, that are placed naturally on our head to light up our hair with Swarovski glitter powder. Reminiscent of a princess crown or angel wings, this hair-band is now available exclusively for l’Acharnœur in bronze-green.

Limited edition of 15 items. Price: 60€  taxes inclued


Jane model in bronze-green.


- Reworked lace wings with a sprinkle of Swarovski glitter powder.
- Steel hair band covered in black polyester. Thickness: 4 mm
- One size

Gabriella de Galzain

She used to work under the name « Frénétik ». Today Gabriella de Galzain is coming out of hiding and is launching her eponymous brand. She makes baroque, romantic, rock n’ roll jewellery that expresses a bohemian spirit of elegance and freedom, paying homage to the most beautiful icons. Her undeniable talent can be seen in brooches, necklaces, earrings, cuff-links… She counts many stars among her greatest fans and some of her pieces tell the most beautiful stories.



We requested an homage to the Eiffel Tower. Gabriella de Galzain came up with this timeless yet contemporary brooch. The blend of off-whites means it can be worn at all times. Pearls, chains, crystals, ceramic flowers… The codes of elegance and femininity with an essential touch of impertinence. All the audacity of the “Grand Dame” herself.


Item made to order. Price: 145€ taxes inclued

 «La Parisienne» brooch


- Resin beading and icons
- Resin flowers, glass cabochon, crystal Swarovski rhinestones
- Base in silver-plated copper
- Silver-plated brass chains

They asked us to talk about this.
We like it so we're doing it… Our way !
  • 04- Corruption



The fact is: we are very familiar with the hotel «Les Jardins de la Villa» as l’Acharnœur shot a number of its teaser films there. Hidden on a discreet street near the Golden Triangle (made by the avenues Montaigne, George V and Champs-Elysées), this four-star hotel envelops you in its intimacy and refinement.  On entering the reception, the noise from the street fades into the contemporary «couture» surroundings. In the entrance, there is a couch in the shape of a shoe; in the corridors, mannequins are used as lamp bases; artworks hang in the library; in the winter garden there is an astonishing chrome ivy; on the patio, luxuriant vegetation and a mysterious mirror installation: each space has its own ambience, elegance, identity… 

In terms of amenities, the level is of course top-notch. There is even a Nespresso® machine in every room. The service is friendly, open and efficient. Are we overdoing things? Tripadvisor counts 417 «Excellents» and «Très bons» reviews that only confirms our impression, listing Les Jardins de la Villa 39th best hotel in Paris out of a total of 1824. So our crush is not totally subjective.

Is this little luxury reserved only for the residents of the 33 rooms? Not at all. One can come with a friend and sit comfortably on the couch for a chat or bring your laptop and take advantage of the free wifi. You can also help yourself to a drink in the «courtesy bar» and pay when you leave. This is a real innovation in terms of savoir vivre given the level of trust and calm this hotel offers to each visitor. And for private or professional meetings, the private meeting room is available with its peaceful atmosphere.  

So, Les Jardins de la Villa is a hidden treasure in the capital. Enough to make Parisians want to go away for a weekend, in Paris.

Never tried it ? Now’s your chance.


- Les Jardins de la Villa belongs to the ADHOTEL group and is a member of Small Luxury Hotels of the World. Find out more at: www.jardinsdelavilla.com

- Special rate available on the private meeting room for l’Acharnœur readers : 
• 300€ instead 400€ (-25%) for a day 
• 185€ instead 250€ (- 25%) for half-day (4h max.) 
Café Nespresso, tea and mineral waters included. Find out more: info@jardinsdelavilla.com



We fell in love with this Christmas tree bauble. Add sparkling lights and your tree starts to look like the Eiffel tower ! 

4.90€. Coloured or plain silver. On sale exclusively at Printemps and on www.printemps.com.

  • 04- Idylle

Metro Notre Dame de Lorette
Line 12

  • 04- Station

    Photo © Acharnœur

From the outside, the shop looks like nothing in particular. And it can only fit two clients at a time. So, in theory, it has nothing going for it. Except this shoe repair shop has been handed down from father to son since 1969 by real experts who consider shoes to be works of art. You only need to watch Fabrice holding each pair, observing, describing and planning the intervention… His pleasure is palpable and his work is that of a true master. Whether the name on your shoes is  Louis Vuitton, Karine Arabian or Bata.


Cordonnerie LaffitteMonday to friday - 07h30 to 18h30 without interruption
58, rue Laffitte, 75009 Paris
01 48 78 62 12

  • 04- Quotichien

    Photo © Acharnœur


Do pigeons, who love each other tenderly as la Fontaine might say, need to love us so much that they invade our space? Let’s be clear, we mean urban pigeons, not carrier pigeons that deserted the army at the end of the last World War. Please, no more invasions from gangs of Columbidae in big cities where they have become dirty scoundrels.

We’ve been trying to get rid of them for years. But the more we try, the more they resist. And the faster we run, the closer they get. They seem to be infinitely adaptable. No more grain? Whatever. They transformed themselves into «urban dumpsters», cleaning up after the street markets and swooping in on our leftovers. So pigeons now have the same diet as we do. Try to scare them? Ridiculous. Even when children play at scaring them, they move a few metres away, but stay in the game. Stuck like glue! They even cross the road at the same time as us. You’re having a drink on a terrace? They land above you like an Airbus, on a branch or a gutter and you fear the worst… As for their excretions… A little greenish sculpture that is impossible to clean until it dries, despite its corrosiveness. It’s name in French? Fiente. Even that is repulsive. Droppings, dung, even crap sounds better. 

No seriously, we don’t like these «flying rats» anymore. We only like them in a casserole, especially in a pastilla. Of course, we don’t mind the odd old woman feeding them for the tourists, they look good on postcards. And we can’t even imagine St Mark’s Square in Venice or our own Montmartre without their aerial choreography. Dilemma. Not to mention that the pigeon is man’s closest bird. We would have preferred a white dove, the one that inspired Picasso, the one we admire, the one that represents peace…on earth.

Bruno Lancelot


What the wardrobes, walls or drawers of our teenage bedroom
say about who we are today.
  • 04- junior Suite

    Photo © JC


I touched it for the first time in 1961. It was in a store. I was fifteen. It was blue, beautiful, and electric. It let me try out my first chord: «Apache» by the Shadows. The next day, it moved into my room. My guitar. It marked the first steps in my rock and roll life. We became a duo. I introduced it to all of my friends. It taught me everything: to play each chord and to pull on the rope. At home I practiced, set up a group, rehearsed, and perfected each tune. Outside I smoked, drank, fell in love and dropped out of school. My fingers got blisters, my body vibrated, my spirits soared. It was crazy. I even nearly signed a deal with Barclay. But it fell through at the last minute. That didn’t mean the guitar was put away. We needed one another. 

I started working but I kept up the concerts in my town. 100% pleasure. I met the woman who has shared my life for forty four years. We had our children of love... All rock and roll in their own way. Apples don’t fall far from the tree. And I am so proud! I have never lost the mindset. Of course, the first guitar has been replaced over the years. Not through infidelity, just wear and tear. But I still have it. It keeps an eye on me and makes sure I’m still enjoying music.

I never gave up. I always had a band. Today I compose, sing, and play gigs with my buddies, a saxophonist, bassist, guitarist, drummer… I have the life I want. A balance that has never stopped surprising me, pushing me to take risks and bloom. My latest thing? To take my guitars on to the stage of a theatre this time, to tell my story in a small venue for 70 people, so that friends, strangers and new generations can (re) live this whirlwind. Unbeatable.

B.A. From an interview with Denis R.

Ma vie Rock'n Roll by Denis Rodi.
Last representation : 02 december - 17h. 
L'Échange, 26 rue sommeiller, 74000 Annecy


  • Publisher/Editor
    Virginie Achard
  • Artistic Director
    Perrine Lebas
  • Web design
    Franck Biehler
  • Contributors
    Maurice Achard, Bianca Alberti, Bruno Lancelot, Elido, Marie Veyrier, Stéphanie Norris
  • Translator
    Tresi Murphy


Bruno Poletto

Odile Berthemy, JC