Le Marché aux Puces de Vanves, Paris

vintage french boxes puces de vanves market brocante-bayside vintage

Le Marché aux Puces de Vanves is an amazing brocante market that has been a regular event in Paris since the 1920s.  And it’s an absolute must if you’re ever in Paris!  The market is held in the 14th arrondissement, which was a little out of the way for me, but I was fortunate enough to be able to meet up with Debbie, who works for The Antiques Diva in Paris, and we toured the market together.

However, if you’re getting there by public transport – take the metro line 13 to Porte de Vanves. The market starts at Ave Marc Sangnier & Ave Georges Lafenstre. Don’t be afraid of using public transport, or walking from the metro to the market. It’s a short distance – 600m – and although it’s not the best area of Paris, just like in any city, keep your wits about you and you’ll be fine.

les puces de vanves market brocante flea paris

Puces de Vanves is open from 7am – 2pm on Saturday and Sundays. I recommend arriving just after sunrise. If you do have to wander around waiting for vendors to set up, that’s the perfect time to see what they’ll be offering that day.

I really can’t stress enough: wake early to ensure you arrive in time for the best brocante – and experience the sun rising over a part of Paris too! It’s worth the early start. After all, it’s not everyday you get to go to a market like this. (And if you get there early and find you’re hungry later, the market has a truck selling coffee, crepes and croissants.)

Puces de Vanves is a mix between good brocante and a flea market, so overall prices are still quite reasonable and there are bargains to be found.

les marche au puces de vanves paris

I absolutely loved this market, much more so than Paris’ biggest and more famous market, St-Ouen. Your Euros go much further here than at St-Ouen, which I thought was very overpriced. I bought a lot of vintage at Puces de Vanves – everything from linen, oil paintings, kitchenware, preserving jars, champagne buckets, vintage tins and antique French books.

There’s also a lot of quirky and unique items here too. For example, there was a lady selling antique cast iron shooting targets with a wonderful aged patina over the metal. They were shaped as birds, rabbits, and deer. I bought a few but in hindsight, should have bought the lot!

vintage french tins les puces de vanves

puces les vanves flea market

Debbie from The Antiques Diva made the experience for me so much easier and time-efficient. Firstly due to her shared love of French vintage, she knew what I was on the look out for – so I had two pairs of eyes hunting instead of one!

vintage french preserving jars flea market vanves paris

Secondly, the language barrier. Whilst I did get by with my very limited French (and proficient use of iPhone calculator), the art of haggling is made much easier by speaking fluent French. There were times when I looked helplessly at Debbie, and she and the vendor would animately discuss prices!

french champagne buckets puces de vanves-bayside vintage

Debbie checking out champagne buckets

french kitchenware brocante paris flea market-bayside vintage

Wonderful assortment of kitchenware and enamelware

french vintage kitchenware moulds puces vanves paris-bayside vintage

french faience plates vintage vanves paris-france-flea-market-bayside-vintage

french silver service antique vanves paris market-bayside vintage

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antique french books vanves flea market paris france-bayside vintage

vintage metal french stamps flea market paris-bayside vintage

puces vanves flea brocante market paris

Vintage French wines.. buy the wooden crates too

vintage medical models french paris flea market france-bayside vintage

Quirky: these were pricey at 60 Euro a piece, but show you can find anything!

vintage paris bus sign vanves flea market-baysidevintage

Fantastic vintage transportation sign that was originally on a bus. Loved this piece

french vintage cutlery vanves flea market paris-bayside vintage

Just a few Euros for a little piece of France’s past to take home!

Please put Puces de Vanves on your to-do list when in Paris. It has a wonderful lively atmosphere, and you’ll certainly find some treasures for home, to remind you of your Paris trip.

My Le Marché aux Puces de Vanves Tips:

* Arrive early – with the sun

* Take cash with you in various denominations

* Enjoy a (cheap but good) crepe and coffee at the market

* Stop to listen to the piano player while eating your crepe.. and soak up the market’s atmosphere!

* If you love something and it’s within your budget – buy it – mostly likely it won’t be there later!

* Haggle on every price. It’s expected.

* Use some French – polite greetings, and ‘Parlez vous Anglais?’ with a smile goes a long way. Most vendors speak some English. Use your fingers to show numbers, and your phone calculator!

* Book a half day or day tour of Paris markets with The Antiques Diva – ask for Debbie. If you’re a serious brocante shopper, it’s worth every cent having someone experienced by your side.

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2 Comments ( Reply )

  1. Jennifer McFarlane says:

    Hi Alison

    I wish I could have made it to this market but unfortunately I couldnt plan my recent holiday in france to include Paris on a wkend. Your photos captured it so well, its a great excuse to go back to Paris just for this market alone as I love Brocante Markets. We did however time it, to include the Brocante Market in Annecy held on the last sat of the month. One of the most beautiful villages in France, the Annecy market is set in the old town with beautiful canels and little bridges so like Venice it takes your breath away. The food and speciality shops are awesome too! I noticed in your last blog you mentioned going up North next trip. We covered this area so I recommend visiting Dinan, another beautiful village and the highlight of my trip. I bought a lovely old french pocket watch here and some french copper pots. Stay in Bayeux, if visiting the DDay Beaches rather than Caen. It was here that I bought tmore old french copper pots. Bayeux is worth it for the cathedral alone but the town is historically beautiful and preserved. Monets Garden is a must, and so is Amboise in the Loire Valley. The antique shops in Rouen are fairly expensive but the market on Thursday is good. We travelled by train all through Normandy and Brittany with no problem, the train system is superb and links most towns and villages. I love reading your posts and seeing your lovely photos so thankyou for keeping my beautiful memories of France alive. rgds Jen

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