Friday, May 10, 2013

A Brocante in the 16th, Paris

I got excited when my cousin told me there was a scheduled brocante near her apartment the same weekend I was visiting her.

This is a roving brocante that pops up in different arrondisements every week in the spring and summer months. This particular one was in the 16th, a residential part of the city.

 upcoming schedule of the roving brocante

The things you see range from real valuable items, to real junk. But as the cliche goes, one man's junk...

A Paris trip for me is never complete without a visit to les Puces de Clignancourt and Porte de Vanves--the two permanent flea markets of Paris. And since I get my fix by just browsing, taking pictures and buying small things, I can cover both markets on Saturday. On Sunday, I have the option to go back in case I really want to buy something.

If we happen upon a brocante or a vide-grenier (an attic-clearing sale), that's an added bonus.

There are many bargains at a brocante, and my Asian haggling skills come in handy. My cousin always cringes when I ask for a much lower price. When the vendor gives it, she even feels bad for them. I have to assure her that these vendors are very sharp and have calculated, in their sleep, how much lower they can go.  She grew up in Canada, where she didn't learn any haggling skills. 

It also helps that I know my French numbers pretty well now. Once before, I asked the price of something, and in the hopes of haggling, I replied with a higher number. You should've seen the face of the vendor. Lol.

I have to keep reminding my cousin that she doesn't need more plates, but she is always drawn to them.

I used to gravitate towards all kinds of  armchairs, until I accepted the fact that I was never going to pay the shipping costs back to Manila.

I've  been eyeing a "manche a gigot" for a long, long time now. This is a sterling silver serving piece that holds the leg of a lamb while you carve it.  I've also seen it on eBay for less. 

I'm still attracted to chandeliers still, but since I installed one at home, my obsession has dissipated a little.

I usually end up buying small artwork. They make great trip souvenirs and I can always find somewhere to hang it.

Old teacups are always beautiful but I no longer buy them because I don't have any more space in the cabinet. I might upgrade my collection and get rid of those I don't love. I love this pattern.

The bargains in a brocante are usually in boxes on the floor. Old leather bound books, paintings, brass accoutrements...

I'm not too thrilled when there are new things in a flea market. Or something that says "get this look" like these mirrors below. I want these things to look old and a bit banged up, not newly minted.

My loot from this brocante? Three small, beautiful paintings!

The technique of this watercolorist is quite masterful. She focused on the upper part of the body, where she created the sharpest detail, leaving the other areas weak and almost unfinished.

This one above is not even finished!  It reminds me of my own paintings--unfinished! Unfortunately they aren't signed (Of course, they weren't finished!)

Bea was able to tear her attention from plates finally and ended up buying this small lovely oil painting above.

Here is another beautiful oil I picked up for the grand price of (drumroll please) 5 euro! Nice colors and strokes, except that it's painted on old student-grade board instead of canvass or wood. It will be beautiful framed, and it will remind me of the brocante in Paris. I found it inside an old box under a table.

After hours at the brocante, I treated B to a nice lunch of steak frites for being so patient. 

I had salmon and ended with this cafe gourmand. Delicieux!

B and B, sharing app information, as always

The next day was going to be another flea market day--Porte de Vanves and Clignancourt. Good thing B has fun scrounging around too. He bought a very nice fob watch for G, and she loves it!  Now that is what I call successful "brocanting'!

1 comment:


oh, those mirrors, they're beautiful! Discovered your blog last night and now I'm addicted.


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