la friperie

La friperie is the term used in France for second hand clothes and the stores that sell them.

I have been working on a new and improved carpet crocheted from strips of tshirts and I’m running out of material. So I suggested to Gergö we go visit Parisian second hand stores this Saturday. There is a chain called Guerrisol that has the reputation of being the cheapest in town, so we set out to visit their biggest store in the 9th district. It’s not far from Gare du Nord and about half way to Sacre Cœur.

I've created a monster!

I’ve created a monster!

The store didn’t have anything for me. I’m looking for cotton jersey tshirts and possibly old fitted sheets to cut into strips. It’s not typical Second Hand store material, but they had a few of those rummage tables and apparently also sell entire bags of stuff in bulk.

The place was packed, though, and had the typical second hand smell, so Gergö gave up after about 2 minutes and I after 4 more. We wandered in the direction of Sacre Cœur instead. And as chance will have it, the streets in this quarter are full with cheap fabric stores. The biggest one appears to be Reine (French for queen).

When you look closely you can see the big rack of ribbons in front of the first floor window

When you look closely you can see the big rack of ribbons in front of the first floor window

But basically the entire neighbourhood of Marché Saint Pierre was fabric stores and clothing rummage sales. You can buy everything from terry cloth totulle to the material I only know from Dirndlschürzen.

Fabric as far as the eye can see and the credit card takes you.

Fabric as far as the eye can see and the credit card takes you.

The French Wikipedia even says it’s the biggest collection of fabric (tissu) stores in Paris. Some of the stores are called “coupons de…” and I only now realised that it’s not to do with reduced prices but with bolts of cloth.

The Marché Saint Pierre was not a food market as far as we could tell but an art gallery / community center / hip café.

Marche Saint Pierre

The building itself looked really interesting, but I’m a sucker for those food markets. We were going to check it out, but Saturday is just to busy. I am pretty sure I will come back on a weekday when it’s less busy and I have one or two people in mind who would probably enjoy the fabric stores.

 

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