Emily in Paris blew us all away in 2020 and for more reasons than one might expect. Emily Cooper, played by British-American actress Lily Collins, ventured beyond the confines of what she had always known, America. As she makes her way through the streets of France, her open-mindedness allows her to experience the Parisian lifestyle to the fullest extent. Through these experiences, we, and she, learned many valuable French lessons (scroll for memes). Some of these lessons can be studied and practiced at home, where you too can have your very own Emily in Paris experience. Emily learned the hard way so you don't have to. Let's review four of our favorite French lessons from the first few episodes of Emily in Paris.
French lesson #1: Creating a scent is like writing a symphony
We heard this eloquent line from Antoine Lambert, who is played by French actor William Abadie. Antoine is the owner of Maison Lavaux, a French company that focuses on scents and perfumes. For one of their current scents called De L'Heure (translates to 'of time' in English), he explained, they started with a simple melody.
"Top notes of bergamot, mandarin, vetiver. The middle notes are considered the heart of the fragrance. Ylang Ylang. Provençal lavender. And then, for some depth and richness, base notes of indole. Which, surprisingly, has the same molecular compound as merde. Like in life, one has to balance the sweet with..." If you're about to translate merde, let us do you a favor. Merde = 💩
Antoine is considered a "nose" for his expertise in creating perfume compositions. This is a challenging job, and we are very lucky to have some excellent French noses in our community!
We are pleased to have Charlotte Breton amongst our French "nose" professionals. Charlotte is the owner of Samo Paris, which is operated out of Bordeaux, France. Samo is a brand of natural scented candles, with a "zero waste" approach, from the glass jars to the cardboard packaging, everything is recycled. Charlotte has crafted several of her own signature scents that can be smelled and admired in her Cardamom, Vétiver & Neroli Candle, Edelweiss Flower, Amber & Linen Candle and Teakwood & Tobacco Leaf Candle, to name a few. These French designed scents would certainly be Emily approved!
Another set of noses we know and love belong to the two co-founders of Pikoc, Cécile and Marine. Pikoc is a a brand that carries everyday products; however, these products with a not-so-everyday mission: to help you discover a world still unexplored in household products- pleasure.
These two lovely French ladies share the same sentiment of our dear Antoine. "We are epicureans, we love good things and we enjoy them, so why not create them?" Cécile and Marine asked. "We had a common dream that turned into an entrepreneurial adventure, perfuming your daily life." And trust us, they know how to perfume. Antoine would get along great with this dynamic duo. They have provided the notes (top, middle/heart, and base) of each of their signature scents! Check out these amazing laundry detergents that will keep you smelling French all day long: Bois Mythique Laundry Detergent, Eclat D’Iris Laundry Detergent, and Oranger En Fleurs Laundry Detergent.
We will leave you with these final, memorable words from Antoine. Reflect back on this when considering the signature scent for your home and for your laundry. "You want your fragrance to remind people of the beauty of the moment they spent together," Antoine said. "And that they can revisit again and again and again. One only needs to reapply, and the passion comes flooding back."
French Lesson #2: The French reverse the dates
Emily had one task: to make a reservation at a Michelin star restaurant, very last minute. She thought she had placed the reservation for six people, 9:00pm on 8/11. In reality she placed the reservation for 11/8. November 8th. How is this possible? The French reverse the dates. While this is not likely to happen in America, be careful to note this if you want to make a reservation for a French restaurant when you do finally get to Paris. You don't want to have your French experience ruined by not remembering that the French reverse the dates.
French Lesson #3: The French also reverse the neckerchief
As Camille so kindly pointed out, the French way was in reverse of the American way Emily initially had her neckerchief tied. As pictured below. Want to look the part? Do not forget this important Emily in Paris lesson, so you don't have to learn the hard way and have your neckerchief corrected by an actual French!
French Lesson #4: When in France, forget about the peanut butter and try something new
That's right. If you recall, Emily had Trader Joe's peanut butter shipped all the way from the United States to Paris. Trader. Joes. Was it the universe teaching her a classic French lesson when the peanut butter exploded, ruining the photo of Emily and her ex-boyfriend? Absolument (French for absolutely). It was at this time wiser word were spoken by Emily's at-the-time friend Gabriel. "You're in Paris now. I'm sure we can find you something better than peanut butter." She seemingly found something much better in the Pan Au Chocolat from Un Je Ne Sais Quoi patisserie in Dupont Circle than she could have with her ex or with that peanut butter. French lesson learned.
Netflix recently shared a press release written by Sylvie from Savoir that stated Emily will be extending her time in Paris for many reasons including Emily will have the chance to "delve deeper into our culture and perhaps pick up a few words of basic French." That's right, get ready for season 2 and get ready as we uncover many more important French lessons from Emily in Paris.
What have been some French lessons you have learned the hard way? We would love to hear about it and share with our growing community of Emily and Paris and overall French culture fanatics. Shoot us your best French lesson to firstname.lastname@example.org.