See the Flea

If you have been following, you know where I will be on Saturday morning. Here’s what I saw at the flea market today.

01801a003869bdc24c214a28fea272d16235a7ac19  We’re off. Look at that chandelier.

01eeb30adbfd809f191a7b87725198f3d24ba14957 Early on, I was taken with a big stack of sketches from the model in sanguine conte. They were stamped to authenticate, looked to be 19th century and were going for only 10 euros. So tempted. Under the umbrella were some great looking modern works.


01a7f53ea459c6bff1a67e0df6839aedbc339e135b  I was interested in this whole table of old cameras.

01c4d1e35e6fdb84d1c2149168ea71e3d3dda5fd94 These alabaster pendants were really cool. Why didn’t I get them?

01933309e31d29b86319e5c19a240ce172d2836bfe Vintage cloth from Zaire and Cameroon. Each one is a masterpiece of abstraction. There are many different colors and sizes. All QUITE expensive, 175-400 euros. 01bb5960f265b02868cb8fbce9b04e8e96231491fc I have to figure out the pricing on these.

01219f820c2575450a383479de2e297a4ddd90f79cIn the meantime, This guy was adding to the merriment with his tinkly piano. I was getting into the jewellery vendors.


And finally, I settled on little doodads for making jewellery. Spent too much. You know, each piece is only a euro but before you know it…. Anyway, I will make something beautiful. I hope. I especially like the coins and tear-shaped pearl. I find that I have reverse buyer’s remorse. The pendants, the sketches. Oh well, there’s always next week.


Flea Market Treasures: the Hunt Begins

I leapt out of bed first thing. Saturday. Time for treasure. Then I heard a sound I had not yet heard on this trip, the sound of splashing outside the window, a disappointing sound indeed. How could it rain on our first flea market foray? No matter, I thought, it only means fewer shoppers, more treasure…..  For this first trip we had to negotiate a new route from our Marais apartment, but the metro was its usual efficient self and within half an hour we arrived, the rain had stopped and the wind had picked up. Vendors were struggling with their umbrellas and goods were literally flying off the

tables, adding to the excitement.puces


I saw lots of old friends amongst the vendors: the guy who repairs those gorgeous French 400 euro men’s shoes and sells them for a fraction, the man who, on my last trip, sold me many pieces of Moroccan pottery from his 5 euro table, the group of vendors who drink wine all morning and play poker. The coffee van has been all spiffed up, but the cafe creme and pain au chocolat remain the same. A committed treasure hunter must sustain herself. Here are some things that caught my eye.

trikeOkay, it’s one of those things that looks better in person. But a real cutie in the flesh.

chairsA beautiful set in excellent condition, avec l’air de Provence.

bedShoved behind a couple of lawn mowers was a real little heart-breaker. This petite daybed came with all the parts and the blue-grey velvet was stunning. It  wouldn’t need any work and would be enchanting in a foyer, child’s room, or living room. Do you think I could get it in my carry-on?

tilesThis stack of antique tiles was very compelling. Later in the day I saw something very similar in an exclusive Marais tile shop for about a bazillion euros more. Would they exceed my airline’s weight allowance?

boarQuick, call Darryl Carter. If you don’t know who he is, go here: Anyway, he is an inspirational designer whose minimal yet traditional designs are the toast of Washington. Strangely, he has a fondness for boar heads. Do you get that?

Yes, we saw the weird, the wonderful and did not leave empty-handed. Here was my first purchase, only five Euros:

penA vintage cartridge pen with gold nib. Great for drawing or to use with my Rhodia notebook.

ptgHere, sitting on the mantel of the bedroom, is the original pastel on board that I picked up for 20 euros, far less than I would charge for one of my own. I told the vendor that I couldn’t see a signature. “Voyons… “he said, with a twinkle.  “Oui, c’est….De…gas!” I carried my painting  under my arm on the metro and was stopped a few times  by Parisians who wanted to see it. “Pas mal”, they said, French for “I love It”. I love it, too. Can’t wait for next Saturday.