top: 5px; float: left; color: white; background: #781300; border: 1px solid darkkhaki; font-size: 40px; line-height: 30px; padding-top: 1px; padding-right: 5px; font-family: times;”>I love nothing more than when a client writes in after their tour and so I was thrilled recently when Rebecca C wrote in to thank me for her Paris Flea Market tour! In today’s blog I wanted to share her kind words with you about our Paris Flea Market Antiques Guide Danielle!
My husband and I just returned from Paris on Sunday, 05/25/14. I had booked a full day antique tour with your company for Sunday, 05/18/14. We had a wonderful day with our guide, Danielle Pelletier. What a great way to start our trip to Paris!
Danielle picked us up right on time in her little car and away we went! She really put us at ease right away. She was invaluable in helping me to find my antique treasures. In fact, before we had even arrived, she was sending me photos of things she thought I might like and keeping an eye out for a variety of items. She had also talked with a vendor at the Puces and sent me a link to the vendor’s website for Lamidesarts so I could check out some pieces prior to arriving in Paris. The vendor, Claire Castillo, brought all the items to the shop and I was able to view everything and purchased quite a few treasures.
I’m mostly a “I’ll know it when I see it” shopper and there are some items I’m always keeping an eye out for, even here in the U.S. Danielle was wonderful at picking up on the items I was looking for and was relentless in helping me to find those items. She said we would “shop ’til we drop” and we did.
I really wanted to let you know what a memorable day we had with Danielle and will definitely recommend the Antiques Diva & Co. and Danielle to any friends traveling to Paris and will also let our travel agent know about your company.
I see that you have antique tours in other countries so hopefully in the future; we will be able to meet up with another Antiques Diva guide in another country or in Paris, if we’re fortunate enough to return.
We have some lovely French antiques to remember our 20th anniversary spent in Paris.
top: 5px; float: left; color: white; background: #781300; border: 1px solid darkkhaki; font-size: 60px; line-height: 50px; padding-top: 1px; padding-right: 5px; font-family: times;”>Here at The Antiques Diva & Co we love nothing more than shopping for antiques all across Europe, but one thing that helps make the Antiques Diva experience so special is our wonderful Guides! Jennifer is one of our local Paris Guides and we sat down with her recently to discuss a few of her favorite things about Paris and the tours/france-antiques-tours/paris-antiques-tours”>Antiques Diva Tours in this City of Light! The best part about having locally based Guides is getting all the inside scoop concerning the antiques industry, trends, and where to get the best bargains. With that in mind, let’s chat with Jennifer…
What is your favorite piece you’ve found while shopping the Paris Flea Market?
Diva Guide Jennifer:
My favorite piece would be a bould de rampe / boule d’escalier. My father collected them while I was growing up so they are special to me, and are hard to find now. Often they are Baccarat or Saint Louis, so of course French. Think ornate crystal ball that goes on the top of a newel post for decoration. Like bling for your stairs! One time I found a pretty grass-green one that was an unusual color so of course it had to be added to the family collection.
What type of pieces would you say a client could find for a bargain in Paris?
Diva Guide Jennifer: I find that you can often get a bargain on bigger/heavier pieces; things that are harder to get home and not as easy to fit in with today’s scale (smaller rooms with lower ceilings). Most people can make room for a desk (bureau) or commode (bureau), but a large armoire or bonnetiere (with one door) can be harder to place. I find that some of the darker and carved pieces in the Louis XIII or even Louis XIV style can be too visually heavy for a lot of people. They just aren’t as popular as the Louis XV or Louis XVI pieces, therefore you can pick them up for a better price.
What makes the Paris tours special in your opinion?
Diva Guide Jennifer:
First of all the Paris tours are in PARIS, and who does not want to go to Paris?! Beyond the incredible city that we are in, I think the particular history and folklore of Les Puces adds to the charm and allure of the tours. The sheer size, variety, and selection of what is available is truly something to behold. The proximity to Paris is also a plus. If you know where to go and what is really worth seeing, the markets can easily be seen in half a day. You don`t have to be a dealer to enjoy the experience. To me it is like the other monuments in Paris; something that should be seen by everybody. I have had many clients spend many hours at Les Puces and then still be back in Paris to enjoy a kir near the Eiffel Tower later in the afternoon.
What type of pieces can one expect to find in Paris?
Diva Guide Jennifer:
I think Paris has a great scene for some of the big names in Parisian couture. Chanel fans will be amazed at the selection of clothing and purses and collectors will be impressed with the choices and variety of jewelry. We also have some excellent sources for vintage Louis Vuitton luggage or trunks. Goyard is also a favorite but not as well known.
Do you have any secret sources in Paris that may not be available to the public?
Diva Guide Jennifer:
While not really secret, I think the Drouot (Parisian auction house) has amazing bargains. It can be intimidating and complicated for foreigners, but the bargains can be shocking. This is where I always take family and friends if they want a real Parisian experience without the Parisian prices. We do offer Paris Auction House tours!
What’s the biggest myth/misconception about shopping in Paris?
Diva Guide Jennifer:
From personal experience I have found that it can be cheaper to buy something here and ship it abroad than to buy the same thing in the US. I have also found that it pays to know what you are doing. While not common, there are fakes and copies out there.
What’s hot in vintage Chanel right now?
Diva Guide Jennifer:
What is Diva-hot in Chanel (i.e., what our clients seem to like) is jewelry. Clients have been amazed at the prices and selection compared to what they can get in the US. Plus there is something for everybody ie you don’t have to spend a fortune on a pair of earrings or something smaller. I was interested to learn about the older jewelry, who made it and how the quality was so much better. It is not all big ‘C’s and crosses!
Thanks Jennifer for sharing some of your favorite things about the Paris Antiques Diva® Tours! If you would like to book an Antiques Diva Buying Tour in Paris or any of our 8 tour countries, email us at to:firstname.lastname@example.org”>email@example.com.
top: 5px; float: left; color: white; background: #781300; border: 1px solid darkkhaki; font-size: 40px; line-height: 30px; padding-top: 1px; padding-right: 5px; font-family: times;”>O ne of our most popular Antiques Diva® Tour destinations is The Paris Flea Market. People come from all over the world and ask us to help them navigate the HUGE Les Puces, which encompasses 15 markets. It can be intimidating not knowing which areas to go to, how to speak the language, and how to negotiate with French antique dealers.
We believe that education is the first step in the process so our Diva Guides will brief you on all you need to know before hitting the streets – we try to teach you how to do it yourself – but we’re also there to translate, negotiate, and will help you liaise with a shipper to get your purchases home! In the spirit of education, let me share with you the history of this famous market!
HISTORY OF THE PARIS FLEA MARKET
The Paris Flea Market’s origin dates back over two centuries. It all began when men would pick through the garbage at night, collecting “junk” that still had value. They would set up temporary stalls within the Paris walls and sell their finds in less than desirable neighborhoods. These areas were full of thieves and pickpockets, and as a result the pickers were chased out of the city and forced to set up just outside the city walls in areas like Clingnancourt, Montreuil, and Vanves.
Eventually these “vendors” formed groups of stalls to attract more customers. You might think of it as a “one stop shop” with a variety of merchandise. In the spirit of entrepreneurism, some of these hawkers began selling higher quality goods, allowing them to gain customers such as collectors and antique dealers.
In 1855, the streets were paved and the area of Saint Ouen was cleaned up by order of the authorities, leading to the first year of Les Puces. Certain areas were designated as official market space and vendors were required to pay a fee if they wanted to set up a stall there. The Marché Vernaison came about when Monsieur Romain Vernaison built a series of covered huts on the acres he owned. Then an Albanian named Malik bought a building on rue Jules Valles and turned it into 100 stalls, forming the Malik Market. In 1925 the Marché du Biron was formed, consisting of 2 long rows of stalls. It is known to be the more expensive market today.
Knowing the history behind the different markets is not only interesting but also helpful when deciding which section of the Paris Flea Market you want to shop. Some markets in Paris offer higher end items, while others are the bargain hunter’s dream. The market is massive – it’s 7 miles of antique filled alleyways and 15 districts. Knowing where to go can feel down right intimidating. We’re going to share with you a map of the famous Puce de Paris so you can see the various markets in the Paris Flea Market and get a feel for the lay of the land.
As always, if you would like to book an Antiques Diva Tour of the Paris Flea Market or any of our tour countries- Italy, England, Sweden, Belgium, France, Holland, Germany, and Denmark, contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org to inquire about your custom made private antiques buying tour.
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