Posts Tagged vide greniers
This isn’t the post I meant to do but, the two I have in the wings need a bit of explanation and I haven’t got time today. So, as I haven’t been around for a while and I didn’t want you to think I’d perhaps had a fainting fit and been crushed by cats and kittens and then eaten by dogs, I thought I’d reassure you I’m still alive and kicking with a bit of a quickie, picture heavy post.
By the way, don’t you just love the word ‘rummage’ – it sounds so English somehow, although somebody will probably tell me it derives from some far flung corner of the world but that won’t change my mind. I also like ‘cribbage’ and ‘pillage’ but wasn’t doing either of those on Sunday morning, it was definitely a ‘rummage’.
There have been few chances this year to fouiller (the French version of rummaging which is also a good word but devilishly hard to pronounce properly). If the vide greniers (empty attics/yard sales/boot sales) so far this year have not been too far away they have been rained off or ill attended by sellers or by me as I have woken up on several Sunday mornings the worse for wear. Nothing to do with the wine.
Anyway, last Sunday, there was a vide grenier within half an hour’s drive which also had the benefit of being in the village where some good friends of ours have a holiday house and they are ‘in residence’ at the moment, so I knew there would be a cup of coffee and a loo should desperation set in. Which it did. Twice.
These are some of the things I found amongst the used bath mats, second hand baby clothes and inexplicably popular albums full of bottle caps.
Who doesn’t need a sturdy set of hand forged butcher’s hooks? I did read somewhere that these are often mistaken for something called a ‘cherche’ which was used to lower down a well to retrieve buckets lost by previous water gatherers. I’m not entirely convinced. What do you think?
A beautiful turquoise soda syphon with the glass encased in a metal grid – this one copper coloured. Very art deco. The pewter top is marked as being from a Brasserie in Amiens which is in the Somme department of France.
A nice example of an Art Nouveau pewter vase signed L. Houzeaux.
Because everyone needs at least one French cutting board.
When I was in the U.K. recently I found I was rarely given a plate to eat from in restaurants – always an oversized rectangular piece of white ceramica, a slate tile, a wooden board or a conch shell. (I lied about the last one)
You won’t be surprised, especially as I had already bought the red transferware bowl in the top photograph – who could resist those birds? – if I tell you that Mr. Tialys , who usually accompanies me in the vain hope of finding leather working tools at these things, had to go back to the car at this point in order to make room in our bags and arms for more.
Which was just as well…….
this bowl weighs about 3kg.
I couldn’t resist this foxy piece which also weighs a ton but then it is supposed to be a doorstop
I’m pretty sure this is English though being that it represents a fox and a whip.
No leather working tools were to be found but Mr. T. did buy a bayonet knife which also serves as a belt knife. I do worry sometimes but ask no questions because if, in some dystopian future, we have to retreat into the mountains and live on our wits, at least we’ll have something with which to both defend and feed ourselves. That, and the machéte he bought on a previous outing.
Should I be worried?
Well, you can’t say you don’t know in advance what this post is about unless, of course, you are not a sewer (in the needle and thread sense of the word) and haven’t heard of a Myrtle.
The Myrtle is a new dress pattern by Colette which can be made in stretch fabric or woven and is very easy to make and comfortable to wear and, if my two (yes two!) sewing machines hadn’t thrown a wobbly about doing a zig zag stitch on the stretch fabric I used, it would have been finished in an afternoon. All was going well until I got to the waistband and had to do a zigzag round the casing for the elastic and, for some reason, still not fathomed, my machine just wouldn’t do it. I changed the needle, the tension, the thread, the swear words – nothing worked. I changed machine – still no good. In the end, I had to use a long straight stitch which I hope will hold. As is becoming more and more predictable with me lately, it was a little big on the shoulders so I sort of pulled them to the front and did a top stitching doodah with my double stretch needle because I have these things in my armoury and I know how to use them. So, just to prove I can make a dress that fits me, here it is
This really is a quick and easy pattern and the result is very comfortable to wear. The bodice is cut double on the fold so is self-lined (sounds complicated but isn’t) and, although the pattern stipulates 3 metres of fabric, I only used 2 by being really mean and stingy and folding and refolding the fabric like a miser. Although I did leave out the pockets as, if I have pockets, I put my hands in them which seems to work for some people but just makes me look slovenly.
Anyway, after it peed down of rain again yesterday, this sunday morning dawned bright and sunny so I hauled myself out of bed and headed for the nearest vide grenier for some serious treasure hunting. It has not been a good summer here in the South of France this year and, in fact, it has been so bad that I have been jealous of my Mum and Mlle. Tialys the elder who regularly tell me how hot it is in the U.K. even though I know that us Brits have a fit of the vapours if the temperature goes over 20 degrees C, prompting lots of people to shed layers of clothing in inappropriate places and to labour under the illusion that sunshine makes everybody a little blind and therefore not able to notice the often unseemly flesh on public display all of a sudden. But, I digress as usual and this morning was a bit of a strange one in that I ended up spending the most money on stuff I’m going to adorn my own house and garden with.
Found this gorgeous antique french comtoise clock which, after a bit of a wipe and a bit of tentative fiddling by Mr. T. looks like this
All the bits and pieces appear to be present and correct on the inside so I just need to get a pendulum, a winder thingy and two very heavy weights and we will wall mount it and then wonder why we didn’t think of a way to stop it chiming every hour and half hour.
We also bought, from the same flea market vendor, this cart. It is, we are assured, a market florist vendor’s cart. Whatever. It is delightful and once we get the horrible brown paint off and oil the wood, it will be gorgeous.
A close up of a wheel, just because I took the photo and where else would I show it?
Common in the last quarter of the 19th century and up until the First World War, these souvenirs of a marriage were placed under a glass globe and the bride’s tiara was usually pinned to it with mirrors symbolizing the time the couple were together before marriage and, as time passed, the number of children born together with other mementos of the union and of family life. Must do something about the drips of paint (how did that even happen?) but what a lovely souvenir.!
Anyway, off to sunnier climes for a few days (I shouldn’t really have to say that when I’m in the south of France) and taking a rest from the sewing machine, Etsy shops and the demands of certain humans, canines and felines alike.
Mr. Tialys was very taken with some of my vintage French linen discoveries at the vide grenier on Sunday.
I wonder why.
(Perhaps he thought I might actually do some housework)
Hoorah! The Vide Greniers have begun again. Loosely translated, this means EmptyYour Attics and they are the equivalent of Car Boot Sales in the U.K. or Yard Sales in the U.S. They run from around March to October/November and I have missed them. Mostly complete old tut is for sale but there are also many treasures if you rummage carefully. They are my favourite hunting ground for vintage goodies.
Unlike carboot sales in the U.K. they go on for the whole day and there is usually one to be found somewhere once the season gets into full swing.
No more lie-ins on Sunday mornings.
I Love the French for a lie-in, by the way, – it’s faire la grasse matinée – in other words ‘make a fat morning’ .
I’m making the most of the vide greniers on Sundays to stock up on my vintage items because, soon, they will stop until next May time. Yesterday was an absolutely beautiful, warm October day here and the vide grenier was in a tiny village in the valley so we browsed the items people had supposedly emptied out of their attics (which is what ‘vide grenier’ means) next to fields of pasture with the cow bells clanging loudly around us. When I say ‘us’ I made Mr. Tialys come with me because he’s quite useful for carrying heavy things and spotting faults on things that I don’t always notice. However, the disadvantage is he is sometimess too sensible. I saw a vintage typewriter which would have either been useful for my friend Ann (aka Mentalembellisher)’s jewellery making or as a prop in my photos. I tried to get Ann on the phone but she wasn’t home so I left it because he said I had enough ‘props’. It was only 8 euros!! Needless to say, Ann has told me off this morning and said I mustn’t take him next time. Anyway, here are some of the things I did get.