Where were you born and where did you grow up?
I was born in Budapest, Hungary....... fled the Revolution as a small child.... so grew up in Toronto Canada.....
When and why did you move to Paris?
I moved to Paris thirty years ago because of my husband.... he had a really good job offer we could not resist, and since I already spent two years in Paris as a student, I was very happy to get back.
How did you transition from journalism to the fashion business?
When we moved here I was already a news and current affairs TV journalist and producer...working for CBC in Toronto and Montreal. As I had two very small children at the time, I took on freelance missions, which were flexible, and not full time. These were projects that dealt with every aspect of French life: from politics to lifestyle.
When the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation developed a 24-hour news service: CBC Newsworld, they were hungry for content so thought it a good idea to develop e fashion news show to run in the afternoons and weekends.
How did you come up with the idea for the Fashion File TV show and what was the premise?
When Fashion File started in 1989, we had next to no competition in TV.... it was started with fashion journalist Tim Blanks, one producer in New York and one in Paris which was myself. I had very little knowledge of the fashion industry at the time, and actually developed a resistance to it as my father was in the business, and understood the huge amount of work behind the glamour.
The first show I covered was John Galliano's debut in Paris at the Louvre.
This was an era of transition from the old style designers such as Hubert de Givenchy, Pierre Cardin, Jean Louis Scherrer, and the heyday of bad boy designers such as Jean Paul Gaultier, Thierry Mugler and Claude Montana.... great contrasts in style between genteel salon courtesy and frenzied street style excitement
which persists to this day.
You did an interview with Audrey Hepburn. Please tell us about that experience.
At this time M. de Givenchy had a retrospective in the Palais Galliera. We were covering the event and were allowed early access to shoot quietly.
All of a sudden, I had a premonition and asked my crew to come to the backdoor and wait. As we stood there, in walked Audrey Hepburn who was a Givenchy client of long standing. I went up, asked to talk to her and she graciously agreed. As she was talking, I could feel my eyes filling with tears. A very touching presence full of elegance and tenderness....
What were some of the other highlights working on the show?
The most exciting time was the era of the supermodels in the early and mid nineties, when the likes of Linda, Naomi, Christy, Claudia and the gang ruled the runways. They had individual beauty and quirky personalities.... much more homogenous now...
Who is the one person you never got to meet that you would still like to interview?
I am very grateful that I have had great satisfaction in covering all the modern greats of the fashion business...it is the past designers such as Chanel and Dior, Lanvin and Balenciaga I would have liked to talk to!!!!
After leaving Fashion file in 2010 you started teaching at American University of Paris. What courses do you teach and what are some of the key lessons you teach about surviving the tough nature of the fashion business?
Since the show left the airwaves, I am freelancing again and teach part time at the American University of Paris and direct the Fashion Track in the Masters of Art in Global Communications program. I teach fashion journalism and fashion theory.... the great speed in which technology is altering fashion coverage is very exciting.... I try to teach students the realities of the business and the necessity to keep a level head and not get carried away by the glitz and glamour...that is the fun side, which makes all the hard work palatable... and of course that this is not a business for sissies!
Who are some of your favorite designers working today?
Today, my favorite designers are Alber Elbaz at Lanvin, Rei Kawakubo at Comme des Garcons, Haider Ackermann, and Martin Grant.
What do you prefer about Paris?
I now live between Paris and Toronto, and love the contrast in energies...Toronto is raw, new and multiethnic, Paris with its incredible beauty, lifestyle and history will always be close to my heart...
Madeleine with Christian LaCroix
My Apartment for Rent
I am renting my fabulous one -bedroom apartment from November 1- November 16 in the heart of the Marais near St. Paul. For more info email me at firstname.lastname@example.org
I am pleased as punch to announce the launch of Eye Prefer Paris Tours, which are 3-hour walking tours I will personally be leading. The Eye Prefer Paris Tour includes many of the places I have written about such as small museums & galleries, restaurants, cafes & food markets, secret addresses, fashion & home boutiques, parks, and much more.
Tours cost 210 euros for up to 3 people, and 70 euros for each additional person. I look forward to meeting you on my tours and it will be my pleasure and delight to show you my insiders Paris.
Check it out at www.eyepreferparistours.com
Click here to watch a video of our famous Marais tour
New! Eye Prefer Paris Cooking Classes
I am happy to announce the launch of Eye Prefer Paris Cooking Classes. Come take an ethnic culinary journey with me and chef and caterer Charlotte Puckette, co-author of the bestseller The Ethnic Paris Cookbook (with Olivia Kiang-Snaije). First we will shop at a Paris green-market for the freshest ingredients and then return to Charlotte's professional kitchen near the Eiffel Tower to cook a three-course lunch. After, we will indulge in the delicious feast we prepared along with hand-selected wines.
Cost: 185 euros per person (about $240)
Time: 9:30AM- 2PM (approximately 4 1/2 hours)
Location: We will meet by a metro station close to the market
Class days: Tuesday,Wednesday, Thursday,Friday, Saturday, and Sunday
Minimum of 2 students, maximum 6 students.
Click here to sign up for the next class or for more info.
I am happy to announce the sale of a new set of prints of my Eye Prefer Paris Photos. I am offering 20 of my most popular and iconic images for sale including my doors, architectural details, statues, and monuments. They will make great gifts for all your Francophile friends, relatives, and colleagues but don't forget to buy some for yourself.
Click here to see photos and for full details including sizes, prices, and shipping. Here is a sample of some of the photos.