Tag "vide-greniers"

I can spend hours and hours at vide-greniers (flea markets). Yes, I love them. During the summer holiday, after our tandem trip, we went to Île d’Oléron for the weekend. One morning, we went to a vide-grenier. Since I try to buy less at flea markets these days, I took pictures of things I wanted buy but resisted.

Not pictured are a few things I couldn’t resist and brought them home ; )

A view from the helicopter ride.

Oléron oysters. Many many of them went into my belly : )

A very photogenic lighthouse of Oléron.

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Now that the weather is warming up, there are several vide-greniers every weekend if not everyday around Paris. Vide-grenier literally translates to “empty attic.” It is basically a giant garage sale. I prefer vide-greniers over marchés aux puces (flea market), because the vendors are mostly locals (few professionals vendors) trying to empty their attics. Therefore, they are messier, merrier and cheaper. Last weekend, I put my hunting hat on and I explored several vide-greniers.

Everyone got one’s own hunting style and I got my own. I tend to avoid a well organized table vendors. I call them ‘professional vendors.’ They have pre-selected arrange of nice objects, which might lure my attention at first, but they are usually business-like, hard to bargain with and charge too much. Instead, I gravitate towards the messy vendors with cardboard boxes full of everything, which demand me to get my hands dirty and dig in. These vendors are usually more relaxed and nicer. They are more eager to get rid of things, hence when I find a treasure, most likely I can walk away with a bargain and a big fat smile : )

These are the three vide-greniers I dug through last weekend:


1. Jaurès
2. Voltaire
3. Nation

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Whenever I can, I prefer buying something second hand over new. Aesthetically, economically and environmentally, it makes sense to me. And it is exponentially more entertaining and satisfying than shopping in a store. It is a game of treasure hunt! But there is a danger of buying too much. Especially now that I live in Paris where the flats are petite, I try to think long and hard before I buy anything, even if it costs nothing (‘try’ is the key word here).

I brought home some (or one too many) plates, toast holders, vintage iron, its holder and some amazing saucissons which are not in the photo. Yes, I admit I have a thing about pretty plates. Very happy to bring them home : )

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Hope you had a nice weekend too and happy monday!

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