Author Eva Jorgensen calls Heber City home, where she currently resides with her husband and business partner, Kirk, and their two children, but her heart has lived in Paris for as long as she can remember. “Growing up, my mom would tell me bedtime stories of her adolescent years in France,” says Jorgensen. “I loved hearing her stories and dreamed of living there one day myself.”
After years spent visiting and exploring France, she planned to fulfill her lifelong dream of moving there with her family last summer. But then Covid happened, and Jorgensen, like the rest of us, could only travel via books, movies, and memories. We chatted with Jorgensen—also the force behind Sycamore Co, a creative studio—about her book, her travel tips, and favorite haunts in Paris. Take note for future trips!
PCM: What inspire you to write Paris by Design?
Jorgensen: I have been a Francophile my entire life. I collect books about France, and although there are so many great books out there, I couldn’t find one I liked that focused on the creative side of Paris—one that was full of beautiful photos and interviews with local designers, along with a guide to places that creative people like me would want to visit. So I decided to create that book myself. And then I roped in a bunch of people to help me!
What are some favorite hidden gems in Paris?
I love the Musée Bourdelle. It’s a museum in the former sculpture workshop and gardens of Antoine Bourdelle, who was a protégé of Rodin. It’s a little out of the way and lesser known, so it’s not nearly as crowded as some of the other museums. Another hidden gem is the Bruno Solques bakery on the Rue Saint-Jacques in the 5th arrondissement. The owner makes lovely rustic pastries and ceramic works of art. And one of my favorite shopping streets is the Rue de Charonne in the 11th arrondissement.
Paris vs PC
Here are a few of Jorgensen’s favorites both here & there:
Paris: Wild & The Moon
Park City: Harvest
Paris: Escargot fromage et fruits rouges from Du Pain et des Idées
Park City: Pain au chocolat from Windy Ridge Bakery
Paris: Centre Commercial
Park City: Crosby Collection’s “secret” upstairs room full of vintage turquoise jewelry
How do you feel about Paris possibly reopening to tourists this summer?
I’m excited! Of course, lives and safety come first, and I understand the restrictions that have been in place. I know so many small businesses in Paris (as elsewhere) have had to close, and many are hanging on by a thread. I would imagine those businesses are very grateful for the reopening. I’m personally planning on guiding a Paris by Design trip this coming October, and I can’t wait to go back!
What are your best Paris travel tips?
If you’re hoping to avoid crowds, seek out smaller museums, take advantage of all the gorgeous parks (including ones that tourists don’t visit as much, like the Parc de Belleville and the Parc Montsouris), and explore neighborhoods that are a little bit off the beaten path (like the Rue de Charonne or the Butte-aux-Cailles). Shop local, and eat in small, locally owned restaurants and cafés as much as possible. If you have time, take a day trip to the countryside to visit places like the Château de la Roche-Guyon, Monet’s gardens at Giverny, or the cliffs of Étretat.
Want to pore over the pages of Paris by Design? Order a copy ($30) from Dolly’s Bookstore (510 Main St, 435.649.8062).