If Marie Antoinette had her own blog, designed by Jean-Luc Godard, it might look something like TheCherryBlossomGirl.com.
The site is the creation of Alix Bancourt, a 24-year-old Parisian fashionista who might remind Nouvelle Vague fans of Godard’s muse Anna Karina and who seems to live in a world as fanciful and pastel-hued as the young French queen.
And, like Marie Antoinette, she is in love with shoes.
In TheCherryBlossomGirl.com – the title is from a song by Versailles-based electronica duo Air – Bancourt, like other bloggers, writes about her current beefs and bouquets. But it is the fashion images that are drawing as many art directors as style slaves to her site. Shot by Bancourt herself, they some of the most beautiful in cyberspace.
Instead of standard-issue blogger images (girl looking wistful while clutching hem of her skirt on front steps of her house), Bancourt creates elaborate, sophisticated mises-en-scène along the lines of what you might find in an issue of French Vogue.
A few examples: soft-toned images of her favorite shoes lined up on a well-worn parquet floor against a wall covered in distressed toile de Jouy, photos of a pair of Prada clad-legs sticking out of a field of Van Gogh sunflowers, and Nouvelle Vague-esque long shots of girls (girl, that is; Bancourt uses herself as a model, shooting with automatic timers) running down highways with only a Citroën 2CV in the background (you get the feeling Bancourt doesn’t want to venture into territory more modern than the era that brought us that iconic car). These are couture fairy tales for the OS X age.
Bancourt, who studied fashion and interned at design houses Chloé and Alexander McQueen, also makes and sells her own designs, which are showcased in her thematic shoots.
The site has sections for such French art de vivre essentials as accessories, home decor and, of course, travel, although there isn’t much in the way of practical information, just arty close-ups of, say, a bamboo forest in Japan or pastries in Antwerp, or moody shots of a Lost-in-Translation lass looking wistfully at the city from the upper floor of a Tokyo skyscraper.
An entire rubric is devoted to Bancourt’s hometown. She lists good sources for fripes (secondhand clothes), not to mention her favorite pastel-colored macaroons. But again, it is the images that stand out on this site: merry-go-rounds in the Tuileries Garden, shots of café chairs stacked up, a sunset-lit alley of trees.
Bancourt’s universe is highly personal, but lovers of fashion – and Paris – will definitely want to visit.Favorite