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Vide Greniers in Burgundy

Vide greniers or car boot sales are almost a Sunday institution in Burgundy. When the locals empty their attics, you will find everything from pottery to postcards, prams to pogo sticks. During the summer months, the stalls line the streets creating a busy carnival atmosphere and it is an occasion to stroll, enjoy a refreshment in the sunshine, greet friends and maybe come away with a ‘find’.

Apart from the domestic items, at these events you will find a lot of antique and bric-a-brac stalls selling items long since forgotten. Many of the exhibitors are ‘pros’ and attend a different venue each week. Others are locals who are having a clearout. It is not uncommon to display something on your stall and find it for sale a few pitches down the street, for more money, snapped up by some savvy trader.

Anyone can display their wares and set up a stall for a small fee of a few euros to the organisers. The keen stallholders pitch up at 5.30 a.m., and by 8.00 a.m. the dealers are out in a frenzy of rummaging for the first prime pickings, keen to barter. The morning sees the more serious buying public; after lunch, a lot of the good stuff has been snapped up and people are mostly ‘just looking’, strolling in the sunshine. Make an early start if you are a bargain hunter.

From the seller’s point of view, apart from getting rid of a load of ‘stuff’, this is an entertaining day out, people watching, with the bonus of some small earnings to make it a day well spent. As a private individual you are allowed to sell at up to two events in each calendar year and strict laws enforce this.

Vide Greniers, Flea Markets, Antique Fairs & Brocantes 2016

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