Cultural Outing Ends in Stocking Feet–“With Elegant Cuban Heel and Seam”

This is a meandering post that gets a little racy at the end. If you are in the mood for neither I understand completely and you are excused.

Okay so last Saturday I was reading Charlotte Moss’ newsletter, which is great, btw, and included a piece on C.T. Loo, the late and controversial Chinese art dealer who built a pagoda smack in the middle of Paris near Parc Monceau, where it stands to this day. Not stopping there, she also included shots of other pagodas in France and England. I am a fool for a pagoda. Here’s a snippet from her newsletter:

Charlotte Moss newsletter outtake
Charlotte Moss photos of pagodas as garden follies, excerpted from Charlotte Moss newsletter

Btw again, on Saturday, March 7, Doyle is auctioning a collection of Charlotte Moss furnishings and objects which you can read about here.

Back to the newsletter – Charlotte also wrote about an exhibit at the Grolier Club in New York which is not far from me and I thought I’d pop by, broaden my horizons, enrich my cultural lexicon, and become a better person.

Grolier Club website
From the Grolier Club website

But it was closed so I went to Barney’s instead.

Barney's via
Barney's via

At Barney’s I didn’t see anything that blew my skirt up–except when did pocketbooks start costing $1,700? Hello? I moved on.

And then I saw something that if my skirt did blow up, well it would be something.

Fogal Stockings, Madison Avenue
In the window at Fogal, Madison Avenue

These stockings were in the window at Fogal. They are called CHOUCHOU, which in French means cabbagecabbage and is a term of endearment. Part of Fogal’s Great Gatsby Collection commissioned for the coming Baz Luhrmann film The Great Gatsby (can’t wait), this particular pair also has “elegant Cuban heel and seam.” Were these Castro’s idea? It was a new one on me.

Fogal stockings
Fogal stockings with elegant Cuban heel and seam

And after the $1,700-pocketbooks, they seemed like a bargain at $75, which in retrospect I realize is also insane but sometimes in New York you lose your perspective about things  like this.

But wait’ll His Grace sees them…


  1. Hello Frances, So funny that the Pagode of Chanteloup featured in this blog as we’ll be going there on our bike trip in the Loire this May! It’s really fun and there’s a wonderful woodland path we use to get there…..see you soon. Rachel

  2. Whoa! Of course the pagodas are charming, all….but the hosiery. Better you than me though, lest (after the inevitable slippage…)I be known as “ole cabbage knees”. XO Pete

  3. I can hear His Grace shouting “Arriba, Arriba” from here…and there are lots of trills on those double “R”s!!!

    1. Ha! He told me how great my legs looked! I said I loved him for thinking they were my legs. But now I think of it, my legs might look good to anyone with eyesight as bad as his. Thank you for writing dear Molly. xo F

  4. Stockings are so much fun! Like artwork on your legs! What is the difference between a pagoda and a gazebo? Feel silly asking , but both look like a good place to have a glass of wine and watch the sun go down !

    1. Hi Patti! Good question! A pagoda refers to a multi-eaved structure which has its origins in East Asia – from China, to Japan, to Thailand and so on. It is thought to be derived from the ancient Nepalese stupa. A gazebo, on the other hand, is generally an open-sided garden room or structure that has only one roof, but like the pagoda is usually free-standing and often ornamental. Either one is a fine place to have a glass of wine and watch the sunset. Thank you for asking! xo Frances

  5. The pagodas were stunning! Love the Bagatelle!
    As for the hose, I would run them the first time I wore them, and at $75, they are not a bargain. They would be lovely for a bride in white, however.

    1. Good point Diane, and you are right about them not being a bargain! But a nice idea for a bride who might want to sauce it up a bit. Meow. x F

  6. Oooh la la! From Charlotte Moss to Pagodas to clubs to Barney’s to stockings and back, what a trip you had. The stockings are great-and when did handbags start costing $1,700? Everyone I pick up is the same.
    xo, Lissy

  7. Loved, loved, loved this post! Those stockings (most certainly not thought up by Castro, nothing so lovely could ever come out of that mind) took me on a trip down Memory Lane, playing in my Mom’s closet, watching her get all gussied up for a night out on the town with my handsome Daddy. She had the most beautiful clothes, lingerie, garter belts! There was one with little pink bows which I was determined to wear on my head while parading on our terrace, causing my poor Abuela no end of grief. My goodness, WHAT would the neighbors think? I thought it was a splendid getup. In my defense, I was four. Thank you for bringing back some wonderful memories. Loved the pagodas too!

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