Sunday, January 13, 2013

After last Saturday’s wasted journey and time, this Saturday, we set off at an early hour for an Estate Sale in a lovely little hamlet in the Tarn.  This sale was being held by our favourite auctioneer, who is not only professional but entertaining and a thoroughly nice person to boot! 

We arrived at the designated spot, as did most of South Western France.  It was mayhem outside with vehicles reversing along narrow French lanes and trying to find a parking spot that was not 2 kilometres away was a challenge.

 It was the biggest house auction / estate sale that we have ever been to.  The house was crammed with antiques, collectibles and general domestic items.   As the day wore on, it became obvious that this would be a marathon auction.  There was half an hour’s break at 14.00hrs, while the over worked auctioneer had a brief respite.  We managed to grab time for a piece of fruit and a few sips of water and then we were back to the melee as it continued.   I would have killed to have had a hot and strong Grande crème at that point!

As I said, most of the sale was outside in very unpleasant conditions and it amazed me that tempers did not fray more than they did.  That was down to the auctioneer, who with his natural good humour kept things going.  But as you can imagine, things needed to be taken away on the spot and people had to push through a sea of bodies to take the items to their cars and vans.  There was a continuous line of wet cardboard boxes being passed over the heads of the audience, containing all manner of things.

I love the fact that we get the chance to mix at this type of sale. Living in a small hamlet and working from home, we don’t get the chance to practise our poor French too often.  At a sale like yesterday, we get the chance to chat to any number of people, which is great. 

Even though it was a gruelling day and given that we did not get home until well past 8.00pm, frozen to the bone and starving hungry, it was worth it.  The lady of the house had been a talented artist and seamstress.  She had the most amazing collection of vintage unused fabrics and stunning antique linen sheets with fabulous embroidery.   Here are some of our purchases:

One room was totally stuffed with such fabulous items and there was fierce competition to become the new owner.  We managed to acquire a respectable amount but I would have loved everything in the room.  There were two reasons we didn’t; one we could not afford it all and two our car was not big enough!  We would have needed a large camionette to get it all away.

Take a look at the fabulous unused toile de jouy, pieces of  vintage fabric and stunning linen sheets:
Vintage Romanex de Boussac Toile de Jouy 
A Bolt of Vintage Grand Teint Meuble Toile de Jouy
in Blue.
A Bolt of the same but in Red with a different design.
Antique Luscious Linens & Exquisite Embroidery

Anyway happy with our haul, I will now begin to start listing it on Ebay and Etsy in the following days.  Straight from a French Armoire to you. ♥ 


Have a great week.





  1. Oh my I am green with envy this is what I dream about you lucky lucky girl what a haul.. the material is gorgeous and one of my favourites.Have you plans for your goodies? Sounds like a tough day but rewarding.

  2. Hello, I am one of the lucky ones that purchased a toile de jouy at Etsy (the first one shown in these pictures) and I can't wait to receive it. So nice to read the story behind, too. I will do my best that the pre-owner of my fabric will be proud of that what I sewed! Have a nice day, Philo