Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Paris Flea Markets

Paris Flea Markets

Paris Flea Markets are a different animal.

Many of the flea markets here in the states are simply cheap prices and hit or miss items. You could go one week and find exactly what you were looking for and then go back the next and not find a single thing. So of course when the suggestion of Paris flea markets came up on my last trip, I had my reservations.

I had visited several markets in Paris in the past and was really turned off by the hawkers and frankly, tacky items… I’ve already been thoroughly disappointed each time. I know what to expect- a million people running around like chickens with their heads cut off while vendors shove items down your throat. Not my idea of a good time. I was ASSURED that this time would be different if I just let her take the lead. Sure, why not.

We arrive, zoom past the normal chaos of the front markets and land ourselves in a completely different area. Side street upon side street of dazzling items, room to walk, vendors catering to people IN actual stores, not those running past them. Alas I can actually see 10 feet in front of me! Little cafes, crepes, ICE CREAM… hmm I could get used to this.

We start with tapestries, not my thing, but the owners are so pleasant and the prices are great! Clearly, my mother and her interior decorator side are in heaven. I wait patiently, fantasizing about the possibility of things I might find, then stop myself, don’t get your hopes up, you don’t want to be let down again! We leave, smiles on both our faces, obviously for different reasons at this point.

I am overwhelmed by what I see, what I want, and the array of items calling my name! Then I see it…a 1950’s green, fur hood, aviator bomber jacket, the real McCoy… I’m intrigued. I slip it on and it fits perfectly. I stare into the mirror and am in awe at what looks back at me, this is beautiful, unique, classic, and it FITS! My smile now stretches from ear to ear, we look at the price tag and it’s… wait for it….REASONABLE… it’s decided we must get it! First purchase and I am beyond ecstatic.

We continue on…vintage Hermes ties, one of a kind Chanel pieces not only no longer made, but barely a handful ever sold, one of a kind Goyard bags, unique furniture, men’s, women’s, children’s clothes, paintings, exotic jewelry, china, accessories and more… o my! We spend almost the entire day and at the end of it, I look at my Mother and say… I want to move in.

Lesson learned- never underestimate the flea markets, and never go “unchaperoned” you will end up lost and unsatisfied… take it from me…an experienced shopper.


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