French-inspired homes in blogs and magazines always make us envious. Just how do they create such a unique, one-of-a-kind look?
The Answer: Collecting.
French flea markets traditionally were great sources for finding uncommon goods. The term “Flea Market” originated from the French “marché aux puces,” a term used to describe markets containing worn, tattered and shabby second-hand goods that may, or may not, contain fleas. Today, flea markets can be a decorator’s dream, brimming with vintage goods.
Let’s peruse some of the famous flea market in France. Maybe you’ll be lucky enough to travel to abroad, or just be inspired to hunt a flea market near you.
They say, “one man’s trash is another man’s treasure” and this is surely the case when you walk through the stalls of this Parisian flea market. Antique china, copper pots, alabaster lamps, and bric-a-brac. Curiosities abound, just put on your creative hat.
Every French country home needs an antique crystal chandelier in a bedroom, bath or kitchen. This flea market merchant has just the find. Have it rewired and cleaned—your room will be illuminated with French-style.
Gilt mirrors, too decadent? Not when placed in a bathroom over a pedestal vanity or in an entry hallway. A little French opulence goes a long way.
Dressmaker forms aren’t just for seamstresses anymore. Add one of these vintage forms to a corner of a room for a sculptural decorative element.
Who can turn away from French Limoge china that is hand-painted and edged with 22k gold? From oyster plates to escargot platters—each piece is a little artistic delight.
A little of this and that is found in this market bay. Canisters for storing sugar and flour, tea pots, starburst mirrors, taxidermy and crystal chandeliers. Expect to hunt for your needle in the haystack.
Pick through, and take what you can carry home. Oversized, galvanized garden planters, worn metal bar stools, and woven baskets all could be creatively included in a home or garden.
A vintage water bottle, old wrought iron corbels, worn baskets, antique porcelain are the perfect accessories on French country furniture. Coffee tables, dining tables and a country benches create a foundation in a French-inspired room. For more French Country Furniture ideas visit Kate Madison.
If you’re lucky enough to get to France this Spring, be sure to add one of these flea market to your travel itinerary:
- Paris – Porte de Vanves
One of the best weekend flea markets in Paris is Porte de Vanves. It’s large in size with many different vendors.
- Nice – Cours Saleya
Monday, from morning to mid-afternoon. Over 200 flea market vendors selling their wares.
- Annecy – Vieux Quartier
Last Saturday of the month, all day. Held in the picturesque Old Quarter, vendors sell milk jugs, ceramics and wares.
- Lyon (Villeurbanne)
Sunday mornings in Villeurbanne, on the outskirts of Lyon, with over 400 vendors making it one of the largest markets in France.Happy hunting!