Brocante: Flea Market

Nahoko Tournier - 08/07/13 -
When you live in France, you often hear a word ‘brocante’

Last weekend, we went just outside Paris to visit one of the biggest brocantes.

There are other names for brocante such as ‘vide grenier’ = Empty your attics or ‘marché des puce’ = Flea Market. As you can imagine, you will find so many different kinds of items in the street.

There are a lot of local brocantes as well as professional ones, which can be considered more like antique shops. The one that we went to was more of a local brocante where local residents install their own stands and sell whatever they want to sell. I found this type more interesting than the professional ones.

Most people sell items they don’t need anymore, such as children’s clothes, toys, old electric appliances, books, DVDs, kitchen utensils, etc…  Some people baked home-made cakes or cookies. You can negotiate the price with sellers and sometimes you can find something amazing. I bought my spring jacket for 3 euro, a cute necklace for 1 euro!

Sometimes you may wonder why some people want to sell such junk! Who wants an adaptor for 10 year old PC or rusted nails?!  Maybe someone would. I guess that is a fun part of brocante in France.

My husband hates shopping, but whenever I suggest to him to go to a brocante, he is always willing to come with me. Maybe because there are lots of interesting items that you don’t find in big shops. You can either participate in the brocante as sellers or buyers. Sitting at the booth and sharing home made cookies with neighbours, sellers also seem to be enjoying themselves.

Nahoko Tournier - 08/07/13 -

I have never participated as a seller, but I think it would be a great opportunity to empty our husband’s comic book collection!  Well, he would kill me if I did, but I would love to be a seller one day.

One of the booths was specially dedicated to the victims of earthquake and tsunami in Japan. I know one of the organizers of this booth, and she told me that the money that they collected will be donated to the Japanese Embassy in France.

As a Japanese person, I was very shocked and saddened by the incident. There are still lots of people suffering from a poor standard of living. Last but not the least, I would appreciate it if you could support these victims.


Please join Nahoko and provide your support by following these links to donate to the victims of the recent Japanese Tsunami and resulting disasters. Thank you in advance:

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Nahoko Tournier

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  1. Bethany Untied Jun 23, 2011 at 5:36 PM - Reply

    I can’t believe I lived in France for over a year and never went to one of these ! Will have to make sure I don’t miss it next time I’m over there…especially if you can manage to drag your husband somewhat willingly along with you- maybe mine will go too ! 🙂

  2. Nahoko Tournier Jun 23, 2011 at 7:27 PM - Reply

    You have not been to brocante? You REALLY have to go because it is a lot of fun and sometimes you will find something amazing!!

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