If you are to be in Paris some time soon, and looking for a good address for some shopping, in particular if you want to take a gift home for a child, then I can recommend no better place than Pain d'Epice, a most traditional toy and craft shop in the heart of Paris.
The Passage Jouffroy is one of those special places. Not far from the big department stores in the 9th arrondissement, not far from the largest Paris auction house yet actually in a world of its own.
Along the Passage there is a little hotel called the Hotel Chopin; a rather wonderful chocolate and pastry shop where you can stop for tea; the wax musuem known as Muée Grevin and there is Pain d'Epice.
In Pain d'Epice you step back in time as you ooh and aah over the choice of old fashioned stationery; beautiful hand crafted dolls as well as kits for making toys
and most famous of all, their collection of dolls houses, miniatures and every imaginable accessory.
When my girls were younger, we spent hours in this shop picking out furniture and lighting for their dolls houses ....
miniature suitcases to store over tiny wardrobes
little watering cans to stand in front of kitchen doors
toys for their toys, or
the smallest farmyard animals you have ever seen ...
And if you do get there, after you've shopped to your heart's content, you can simply pop across the passage for a tea and pastry at Le Valentin
...and wonder how many people have peered in though the windows
of the pretty arcade boutiques since the Passage was first opened in 1876.
photos thanks to Bee Girl and Google images