French Fancies: Au Bain Marie

I don’t think it’s any secret that I love, love decorative items, particularly those for my dinner table. If you’re similarly afflicted, you need to check out this website and/or visit its treasure-trove shops in Paris. Honestly, I can spend hours and hours in there shopping for gifts for myself or family and friends.

Founded in 1977 by Aude Clément, architect, designer, stylist and gastronomical journalist, Au Bain Marie is a veritable cabinet of curiosities, where the rare is seen alongside the beautiful, the unusual and sometimes even museum-quality pieces.


Themed around the ‘Art de Recevoir’ (art of hospitality), this incredible universe is full of creativity and refinement. Clément, who’s been joined in this venture by her engineer son, bring together the antique and the contemporary in a truly legendary venue, on the rue de l’Université, in the chic end of the Paris latin quarter.  Hemmed in all sides by wonderful private art galleries. You can’t just push the door and walk in; no, you ring a bell, and wait for the door to be opened and for you to be greeted.  It kind of sets the tone for the visit.


Au Bain Marie is the extraordinary result of an extraordinary career.  Aude Clement originally trained as an architect, at a time when young ladies didn’t do that sort of thing. The May 1968 riots saw her school closed down, and she came to Paris and switched to a design school.

Collection Nemo

With her qualifications in her pocket, she found herself unexpectedly employed as a  journalist, writing about gastronomy and fine dining for the quality French papers and magazines.

Dresser sa table Au Bain Marie

For many years she had a huge store near the Crillon hotel, where she displayed her unending collection of antique and collectors tableware.

Habitually Chic® » Chic in Paris: Au Bain Marie

Today,  Aude’s two stores (the other is near Hotel Lutetia) are smaller than the early Crillon store but her passion for a beautiful table and the importance of fine dining still persist. From the collection of vintage ice buckets, to the spectacular antique sets of cutlery, to the dinner sets designed by Aude, be they on porcelain or on tole. Aude’s long experience means that she is a fount of knowledge on the history of tableware, and is able to source practically anything, no matter the request.

Habitually Chic® » Chic in Paris: Au Bain Marie

When one discovers the treasures of Au Bain Marie, one understands why French cuisine and all its ceremonies are part of the UNESCO Convention for the Safeguarding of Intangible Cultural Heritage, and long may it continue.

All images courtesy of Au Bain Marie

31 Comments on “French Fancies: Au Bain Marie

  1. All very pretty, I can imagine Angel from ‘Escape to the Chateau’ browsing in these stores.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. That is the kind of shop, where my husband would stay outside and keep all the credit cards with him … 😉 😀 … just joking, of course. In shops like that I can get lost for hours.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Pingback: French Fancies: Au Bain Marie — View from the Back | Ups Downs Family History

  4. Pingback: French Fancies: Au Bain Marie – Urban Fishing Pole Lifestyle

  5. Pingback: View from the Back – Featured Blogger of the Week July 22, 2022 | Ups Downs Family History

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: