Sunday, July 23, 2017

About Last (Last, Last) Summer


I found this post on the "drafts" file of my blog. I never finished it--therefore it never got posted. So here I am attempting to recall this Summer of 2015, which was a lot of fun for the family.


We had a family wedding to attend in Washington that June, so I took advantage of the trip and decided to spend some weeks of July (and the rest of the summer) in New York.


The kids were thrilled to be in New York and watch as many shows.  It's one of our favorite things to do as a family.


As we were in New York for more than a couple of weeks, I also signed the kids up for some fun summer camps.



G attended Camp Broadway, which was a week-long program held in the Chelsea area of New York.


And C joined a two-week program at NYC Guitar School where she learned how to play in a rock band.


Under the leadership of a teacher/band manager, the music students learned how to play together as a group. 

She was signed up as a keyboard player, and it was this experience at NYC Guitar School that piqued her interest in the electric guitar.


Now, she loves her guitar and won't put it down. The piano has become her secondary instrument.



Meanwhile, G's one-week Camp Broadway stint was such a cool program. In a span of 5 short days, they were taught songs and dance moves of a popular Broadway show.   Then they have a final-day performance for all the parents.


This particular summer, they were doing Hairspray!  All the people who are teaching at the camp work in the industry, so the campers really get a feel of how it is to work in a musical theater production.


Their final show consisted of a number of dances and songs which they performed at Symphony Space, on  Broadway and 95th street.


I can't help thinking that me and my friends practice for months on end for our Velada, and these kids accomplish the same thing in 4.5 days--dancing AND singing at the same time. (We are just dancing!)


It was a fun, artistic and creative way to spend the summer. And of course they now both love NY for all the creative things they can experience.




The kids at Camp Broadway also get to watch one matinee show in the middle of the camp week. They were brought to the revival of The King and I which was showing in Lincoln Theater that summer.


As a bonus (and through parent-connections) she was even able to meet the kids of the King and I show, where she interviewed some of them for an article she wrote as a Scholastic Kid Reporter. (But that's another story and another post--IF I remember to do it)



Saturday, March 25, 2017

Introducing "Paris Brocante"




















This is the post that formally announces our new Instagram presence. Please welcome:

@PARISBROCANTE

Behind Paris Brocante is me and my Paris-based cousin, Bea.  We both love spending our weekends (when I'm there!)  browsing the flea markets, and we figured we might as well do something more productive than just strolling aimlessly among the tables and tents.

Ma cousine et moi!

If half the pleasure is in the hunt, then the other half is in the capture.  Selling what we hoard enables us to repeat the cycle without much guilt. I know some people love vintage things but can't be bothered to spend a day at the fleas, or venture to the more exotic places we go to score our finds.

The more knowledgeable vendors are always eager to share what they know, and we area always eager learners. We don't claim to be experts (yet), so for now, we are just "vintage enthusiasts."


Service a Bonbon; French pastry servers


Many of these things are of a certain era, so there will be similar items every now and then.  But then there will be a unique item from the middle of the last century,  or something from a now defunct company. Very exciting for us.


Fine Bone China Teacups from England are also found at the French brocantes

We really never know what we come across, and that's what keeps it so exhillarating.


Notice my stab at a logo-design (we have a professional-looking one now)

So far we have very limited things because it's what I could carry in my suitcase coming home. As we get used to doing this, I'm sure we'll figure out more efficient ways to get the goods here.  (We are only selling in Manila for now).


Antique Ice-cream serving set.  Icecream used to be churned in a bucket and the finished produst was a frozen log--therefore the knife and the flat palette server.

We are making also lots of contacts along the way--and we will be establishing relationships with dealers who trade very desirable vintage and antique home/tableware. So maybe eventually, we can be your personal shoppers for that antique Christofle tea-set or that vintage chandelier your heart desires.

Antique Silent Butler in plated silver

After the haggling, lugging and packing (none of these things come pre-packed in boxes!)--and taking them home, I still don't know if it will worth our time financially. But one thing I know is that our souls are happy and we are constantly excited about possible finds.

And that for us is enough for now.

Browse IG @parisbrocante!





French Vintage Treasures in Manila

Antique terre de fer from Longchamp, France

Oh my, so much has changed in BLOGGER since I last posted a year ago!

It was getting too tedious to maintain this blog. Now with all the photos on my smartphone, it looks like it will be easier.

I can definitely get back to this!

Antique Salad Servers in Horn and Silverplate

Also, I have a new little hobby that I'd like to introduce to all of you! TAAAA-DAAA! 

Introducing: @ParisBrocante on Instagram!

If you've read this blog from the very beginning, you will know what my passions are and this one speaks directly to my soul.

We are a two-person team. Every weekend, the Paris end of ParisBrocante browses the Paris flea-markets, brocantes and vide-greniers looking for discarded treasures from old estates. Then she sends it off to Manila where the Manila end (that's moi!) offers it for sale on our Instagram account. 

When I'm there, we shop together, otherwise, I accompany her to the fleamarket via viber or facetime. Technology is great.

Our gracious customers write us such sweet notes on beautiful stationery

So far it's been well-received and I'm so surprised to learn that there are more kindred souls  here than I thought!

Considering all the legwork done in Paris: the searching, the lugging,  packing, shipping...then in Manila: the polishing, sorting, stocking, posting...Honestly, it is quite tedious and tiring. BUT we're in this little business to feed our souls. And a nourished soul is empowering.

Vintage hotelware creamers

Why only on Instagram? Because Facebook is just *too distracting* for me! By the time I would've posted one item for sale, I would have also wasted 30-minutes going through everyone's posts and clicking on news stories. FB is time-consuming.

Antique Luneville plates

So we get straight to the point with Instagram.

Suffice it to say, our market are the IG people--almost everyone below 40 years old.  Sorry FB friends if we have no presence on FB--anyway, you guys should be decluttering, not acquiring! Lol.

Vintage Fish Service with faux-nacre handles makes a unique wedding gift

I'm so looking forward to reviving this blog now that it is easy to post photos. You'll be hearing from me!

Do follow @PARISBROCANTE on Instagram now!

Sunday, February 28, 2016

Dinnerplates at Dawn

Here are those dinner plates I've been thinking about ever since I saw them last summer. 


But now way am I paying that price. Too nerve-wracking if anything breaks.


For now, I'm happy with the pictures.


Drag and Drop?

I haven't been on my blog for eons, but just now, I got inspired to post something. I was going to post some pictures of dinner plates. Yes, dinner plates!

Then Blogger just told me that I could actually drag and drop photos directly from my phone! Wow, what an improvement since I was on last. I don't have to download, and then export out to a folder, and then attach to the post. Hmm.. let's see how this works.

And then, all of a sudden, currently on my phone are all these very old photos and videos. I can't begin to figure them out. So I won't.

This will be a test. Let's see how this goes.


*I'm back to edit. It will post only a photo, and not a video. So there...  bitin no?

Monday, August 24, 2015

Sunday at the New York Fleas


Sundays are one of the most exciting days for me when I travel because I know there is a flea market happening somewhere.  

When in New York, that usually means the Antiques Garage or the Hell's Kitchen Flea Market.


But this time I wanted to discover others. Unfortunately the Antiques Garage has since closed too.


Two blocks from the Beacon Hotel, where we were staying, was the Green Flea market. This market held in the schoolyard of a school. During the cooler months, they also have vendors inside the school.


The Olde Good Things antique store is well represented here. They seem to have a truck at every flea market around here.


After seeing this tangle of phones, I decided my next purchase before I left NYC was going to be an old rotary phone. The kids would get a kick out of that.


But we can't spend the whole Sunday on just ONE fleamarket, can we?  After casing the joint, it was time to head for the Brooklyn flea market which I had read so much about.


Just outside the Green Flea market, is an organic market that also happens every Sunday. There are booths with not only veggies and fruit, but suppliers of organic meat in coolers, cheese, and maple syrup.


Getting to the Brooklyn fleas from here is easy, specially with the very handy Google maps app.

(this was our route going back)

This was an indispensable app for the whole trip. Equally indispensable is the mifi we got at the start of this trip. With mobile wifi, we could google search anything without having to look for hotspots around the city.



I've never been to Brooklyn except to go to Peter Luger's for dinner so was excited to see this part of town.


Wish we had more time to hang around and have brunch, but no..we were focused on getting to that flea market.  On the way, we passed by the  Artists and Fleas craft market, which we thought was our destination.

It was too small (and too neat and comfortable) to be the flea market of Brooklyn, so we walked more.



We got to first address on Google maps and the parking lot was empty!

Oh no... had this flea market closed too? A quick Google search again showed that the market was a few blocks up the street, and not at 6th street, where we were.

The 6th street address has Smorgasburg, the food market, that takes place only on Saturdays.


We're finally here. Looks like there are a few other events happening here every week too. Too bad we won't be here for more Sundays.


Off to explore...




Interesting things, curios, and decorative items. I liked browsing this flea market, but nothing called my name and asked me to take it home.


This brass wheat table base reminded me of Alicia.


And these bulletin boards of magazine spines reminded me of Joanna and inspiration for Gifts and Graces Foundation.


And of course, who would have a truck here? The Olde Good Things guys. (Yes, they had a truck here too, but I don't remember now if this was their booth below)


After a couple of hours browsing this fleamarket, it was time to head back to our upper west side digs and prepare for dinner.


On Sundays, the UWS is also full of book vendors selling old books for a few dollars each. The girls have fun looking for titles and old CDs they can buy.





And then its off to dinner with old friends.




Wish we had more Sundays to spend here.

Hello? Party line?


July 2015

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