Established 1964

ALPHONSE GIROUX

Maison Giroux, the famous curiosity and luxury goods shop, was situated at No. 7 rue du Coq-Saint-Honoré and in business from the time of the Consulate until the end of the Second Empire. The business was founded in 1799 by Francis Simon Alphonse Giroux, cabinetmaker and official restorer of Notre Dame. “Maison Alphonse Giroux” also known as “Giroux & Cie” specialized in producing ornate objects d’art and technically sophisticated furniture. Patronized by various members of the French Royal Family, including Louis XVIII, Charles X, Henri V, and Napoleon III, the design house was particularly known for fine ormolu, japanning/lacquer work and exquisite furniture.
When the business was taken over by his sons Alphonse and Andre in 1838, the business expanded under the guidance and innovative planning of Alphonse to become one of the first and most prestigious department stores in Paris, while continuing to take important commissions for custom work. Pieces made for the department store were marked “Maison Giroux,” while Alphonse Gustave Giroux signed commissioned pieces himself “Mon. Alph - Giroux Paris.”
Alphonse Giroux was fascinated with mechanics and new technology, receiving a silver medal at the 1839 Exposition des l’Industrie Francaise, and producing pieces for the World Exposition of 1855. After buying a writing desk at the 1855 Universal Exhibition, Napoleon III bought several other pieces of furniture, candelabras and clocks from Giroux for the Compiègne Palace. In 1857, Alphonse Giroux transferred his shop to No. 43, boulevard des Capucines where he continued to do business until 1867, when he ceded the company to Duvinage and Harinkouck.
Some of Giroux’s most unusual known creations are: a mechanical clock-work horse and carriage for the crown prince, an automaton of a violin player seated on a barrel and a lavishly detailed lifelike doll wearing a regal gown and crown of antique fabrics with seed pearls, presented at the 1867 Paris Universal Exposition to represent the glorious legacy of French Royalty.

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