Brocante Shopping in Provence

Today was a busy day in Provence! We started in Sault and shopped our first brocante. So many fun vintage items were found!

In case you are wondering what the word brocante means, it’s a flea market in France. In the future, I just might refer to my favorite local Pasadena flea market as the Rose Bowl Brocante. I think it sounds better that way. At least more French. Hehe.

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Favorite Places

The Brocante in Sault

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Our group of four, plus our driver, left at 9:00am (which is midnight PST by the way) to attend our first food market and specialty brocante in Sault. Sault is pronounced Sew, and is not far from where we are staying.

The Brocante isn’t near as large as the weekend flea markets but it was fun. And the prices were good. Most everyone bought items, except for me. I know you are shocked but I am a picky shopper and I am waiting for the right items as I am saving for a few special items. (Yes, I am looking for a chandelier for the beach house!)

Negotiating with the Sellers at a Brocante

Today was a bit of a test for us. How much French did we really need in order to communicate and how much, if any bartering could be done. While the majority of vendors were quick to respond in English when asked “parlez vous Anglais?”, the bartering was a completely different story. The vendors who had previously responded in English, quickly reverted back to French when the subject of pricing came up.

Maryliz gave the bartering a go and thankfully the lovely man who drove us today jumped in to explain that while the price she had negotiated for a single sterling silver serving spoon might seem like a good price, however, she had negotiated against herself. She had negotiated a single spoon for €20 rather than a set of 4 spoons for €45. Needless to say, Maryliz will be brushing up on her French language skills this evening and also keeping one of our French speakers close by in the days ahead.

I think I may need to do the same!

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The linens were wonderful and there were some very large items I would have considered if I had a way to bring them home. But no furniture on this trip!

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The weather in Provence is hot this week and we were blessed with cloudy morning weather. It was quite pleasant!

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Shopping the Streets of Sault

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We spent some time shopping at the weekly food market and the wonderful vendors. The lavender stand was my favorite and I picked up a lot of gifts for friends and family. The fruit stands were amazing and if I liked olives (which I don’t) I would have bought some for sure.

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One of my favorite things about the small towns in France is the charming houses painted in fabulous bright colors with colorful shutters that they actually use! (Note to self, why don’t we use our shutters at home?) This house caught my attention right away!

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I walked past this house on the way into town and thought about it all morning, So I grabbed a photo of it on our way back to the car. It is incredible.

Touring Bonnieux

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Next, we went to Bonnieux and had a fabulous lunch outside at a restaurant overlooking the town. The view was spectacular and the food was great.

I tried a new drink at lunch called a Panache. It’s made with light beer and lemonade and it was so refreshing!

Panache with beer and lemonade

Look at this amazing view!

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More Lavender

We made a stop at a few lavender fields and took some more photos. I cannot get over the sound of the bees pollinating the bushes. It’s quite loud and awesome.

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Our last stop was at the Les Agnels Lavender Distillery. They sell anything you could ever imagine that has lavender in it. I bought Lavender Syrup so I can make Lavender Lattes when I get home.

Doesn’t that sound like a great way to celebrate Provence at home?

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Brocante Shopping in Provence

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4 Comments

  1. I’m truly enjoying your trip to Provence. I find myself hurrying to check my emails to see more of your adventures. We are headed to Scotland in July, but wished we had longer to tour. France is beautiful! We enjoyed our visits there, but having a specific agenda planned, as you do, would be a delight!! Thank you for sharing!

  2. Leslie, So much fun virtually traveling with you to France! I love the town. It “feels” serene-calm-and at a much slower pace than life here. The lavender is gorgeous; I find the fields to be lovely. Such a colorful picture of the handiwork of God. I had to smile at the comment about the locals quickly changing from English to French. That sometimes happens to me at the nail salon. 😉 Enjoying “our” trip! Stay safe & keep shopping! 🥰

  3. Beautiful start in France. TY for sharing your journey that are helpful should I ever get the chance to visit. Love all the colors.

  4. Such a treat it is to “accompany” you to Provence. I loved the pictures of the Brocante. I wanted just about half of the things I saw, Lol!!
    Enjoy your time in Provence. Thank you for sharing your photos of your adventure.

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