GETTING MARRIED IN PARIS
Thinking of getting married in Paris, well it will not be easy. In order to legally wed in France, one of you needs to live in France in the district around City Hall, in which you plan to marry, for a minimum of 40 consecutive days before the wedding. Some sources say 30, but you will need to add on an additional 10 days for the City Hall to publish the banns—a public announcement that is put up in City Hall for 10 days preceding your marriage. It will list your names and your impending marriage date.
You must show 2 separate documents that show your French address ("justificatifs de domicle"), such as a gas or electric bill. A cell phone bill does not count. Another option (easier) is to live with a friend or relative, and have that person sign an attestation d'hebergement sur l'honneur. This is a statement swearing that you have been living at that person's residence, and that they take responsibility for you. Of course, there is an exorbitant fine if they discover you are not living with them.
Make sure you get the most recent official list of required documents from the city hall (mairie) in which you plan to marry. Most of these documents have specific time frames in which they must be dated before being submitted, so it is important to get the list as soon as possible.
- Birth certificate ("extrait d'acte de naissance"). Most city halls ask that you present an original copy with full details of your parents, issued 3 months before your wedding date, along with a sworn translation.
- An affidavit of law ("certificate de coutume"), stating you are free to get married in France and the marriage will be recognized in the U.S. Only an attorney licensed to practice in both France and the U.S. may execute this document.
- A certificate of celibacy ("attestation tenant lieu de declaration en vue de marriage ou de non-remarriage") less than 3 months old.
- A medical certificate ("certificate medical prenuptial"): you both must get a prenuptial medical certificate, which says that you were examined by a doctor "en vue de marriage." It is a standard checkup, nothing more. The marriage banns cannot be published until a medical certificate has been submitted to the mairie. Unless new regulations, the certificate must be dated no more than 2 months before the publication of banns. The U.S. Embassy publishes a list of English-speaking doctors. Are you still wanting to get married in Paris?
- Proof of domicile ("justificatifs de domicile") see above.
- A "certificate du notaire." If you are planning a prenuptial agreement, you must go through a lawyer (a notaire) who will provide the "certificate du notaire," which must be submitted to the mairie as well. It must be drawn up no more than 2 months prior to the marriage.
- In addition to all of the above, you will also have to choose and provide information on your witnesses ("temoins") — 2 to 4 people who will act as sort of your Best Men and/or Maid of Honor, and sign the registry after the marriage ceremony. You will need to provide their names, addresses, their professions, and photocopies of their passports with your dossier.
Note: If previously married, you must provide a certified copy of the death certificate of the deceased spouse or a certified copy of the final divorce decree.
Whew! All of this needs to be presented to the mairie in time for them to check and approve documents before posting the Banns. They typically ask for your completed marriage file 10 days before their publication, but it is best if you submit your dossier sooner than that, in case they say a document is missing.
If you can't wait the required time, you can have a mock wedding with a minister present.
Are you interested in getting married in Paris? If so, google English speaking Wedding Planners in Paris.
Wedding Planner, Kim Petyt, wrote a book, “Paris Wedding.” It has information on getting married in Paris, and much, much more.
Parisian Lingerie Shops
Where else but Pairs to shop for the world’s most beautiful lingerie? Parisian women are known for their no-nonsense approach to sexiness, it’s just a fact of life. You’ll notice while strolling through the city’s streets and boutiques that Parisians rarely go for in-your-face seduction.
Below are shops with crafted haute-couture lingerie – an expertise born and perfected in Paris – to the better fashion lingerie chains. Something for every woman on any budget.
Princesse Tam Tam: Something for Everyone: Princesse Tam Tam could be considered the French equivalent to Victoria’s Secret, except that it does not promote the notion of woman as center fold. A more down-to-earth ethos and styles that are practical, well-made and affordable contribute to the chain’s widespread popularity in France and beyond.
Princesse Tam Tam’s wide selection of bras, panties, bodysuits, camisoles, bathing suits, sleepwear and daywear come in feminine, non-restrictive styles and handsome colours, and are pretty and feminine without forcing women into sexualized stereotypes. It’s also a brand suitable for most ages, though it does have a youthful edge.
You’ll find a full range of sizes in every style online and in the boutiques, which can be found in pretty much every city in France. A lace underwired bra and panty set costs between €60 and €80, while swimsuits start at about €90. Tam Tam’s new budget line, Air Lingerie, in lightweight, breathable polyester will cost you about €40 for a streamlined bra and panty set.
Princesse Tam Tam has boutiques throughout Paris – addresses can be found at: www.princessetamtam.eu
Printemps Department Store: Printemps has spent the last five years refurbishing their Haussmann flagship store, and the sixth-floor lingerie corner, unveiled on 1 April, is the latest department to receive a glamorous top-to-toe makeover. If you’re short on time and want a well-chosen, high-end selection of 29 French and European fashion lingerie labels – plus some exclusives, like French designer Olivia von Halle – at your fingertips, then this is a fine place to start.
Printemps, 64 boulevard Haussmann, 9th. www.printemps.com
Cadolle: Grande Dame by history only, Cadolle has stayed true to its roots by moving with the times, creating some of the most sumptuous and alluring lingerie on the planet. Each piece is handmade from the finest fabrics and French lace, and ranges from demurely sensuous to smoldering (look for pieces in luxurious black Calais lace, a house specialty).
Still family-run, Herminie’s descendant, Patricia Cadolle, is delighted to welcome you for your very own made-to-measure fantasy in three fittings in the pink-Champagne-hued Rue Saint-Honoré showroom.
Cadolle, 4 rue Cambon, 1st arrondissement. www.cadolle.fr
A few rules before you celebrate with that glass of Champagne:
It takes age for Champagne to fully blossom-even a brut non-vintage should be allowed to age in the bottle for as long as three years; great Champagne can be aged for 15 years or even more. A bottle uncorked too young will have too much bubble—too aggressive. And whether it's a great bottle or a simple one, champagne should not be served too cold.
Not 43-46 degrees, as sometimes recommended, but more like 50-54 degrees. Too cold is a disaster. The only reason for serving a Champagne icy cold is to mask its defects.
A little glossary of Champagne terms
Vintage: made from wine produced in one particular year
Non-vintage: a blend of wines from different years
Brut or extra brut: dry
Sec: the word means dry, but the champagne is slightly sweet
Blanc de blancs: made with white grapes only
Blanc de noir: made with red grapes
Wherever you marry, have a wonderful life!
All the best,