Saturday, July 30, 2011

Parlez-vous français?

Perhaps it is because I love to read that I'm so drawn to books.  And if they're of a
vintage nature, all the more so.  Needless to say, when I discovered these
French beauties at a flea market some time ago,
I was more than a tad thrilled.

They were buried beneath a mound of completely unrelated items, in a tattered
old box—one of several, I was determined to rummage through. 

Being the treasure hunter that I am,
searching through boxes of disorganized clutter—gone unnoticed
by many—is a challenge I heartily welcome.

The pretty lilac-hued covers of these little readers—softened by the most wonderful
timeworn patina—was the first thing to catch my eye.  But the detail
of the vintage graphics was an even bigger draw.

Though every word, from cover to cover, was in French, many of the titles and
 authors were quite familiar to me.

Beauty is beauty, no matter the country of origin, so without hesitation, I decided
these tiny teasures were destined to come home with me.

When it came time to pay the vendor, he informed me that there were more
"little French books" somewhere in his booth. 

Fabulous!!!  That would mean more treasure hunting.   ; )

I was able to locate a total of thirty of the CLASSIQUES LAROUSSE, thirteen of an
entirely different series, and three other miscellaneous French booklets—
all for a song.

Many of these dainty little gems date back to the early 1930s and span
almost thirty years—to the early 60s.

As is true of everything vintage that I own, I've oftened wondered as to their origins. 
What might the person have been like, who collected these jewels
for thirty years? 

Was she someone who thoroughly enjoyed the written word, as I myself do? 
Did she experience the pull of their beauty, even before she read the first word—
as I did? 

Was she fluent in French? 

These are but a few of the many questions I've pondered, as I've carefully perused their
delicate pages. 

The intrigue of their mysterious history has made my decision to part
with these sweet treasures all the more difficult.  But the Yankee and I have committed
to paring down our collections this year,
and so part with them I must.

Why part with these particular lovelies, you might ask?  The answer is quite simple. 

Je ne parle pas français!

Linking to Linda's Nifty Thrifty Tuesdays, Mary's Share the Love Wednesday,
Suzanne's Vintage Thingie Thursday, Leigh's Thrifty Thursdays,
Cindy's Show and Tell Friday, Debra's Vintage Inspiration Friday
Meg's Everything But the Kitchen Sink and SJ's Creative Bloggers' Party,
Tammy's Anything Goes.


  1. They are darling little books and great conversation pieces! I'm glad you found them!!


  2. Oui, je parle un petit peu francais! :)
    Isn't logic a bummer sometimes?! I can definitely see why in cleaning things out, these must go. Too bad though! :)

  3. I have a great passion for vintage books with bold graphics, so these really drew me in. I have some french book similar to these. I found mine at an auction.

  4. What a great find ! Wonderful photos !
    To bad you have to part with them ! They are lovely. Have a great day !

  5. They're beautiful! I would have bought every one of them. Your pictures are gorgeous and that rosary is simply perfect!

  6. How lucky you were to find these charming little books...pourriez-vous apprendre à lire le français...then perhaps you could rationalize keeping them! I love the way you paired them with the jewels in the photos...pretty.

  7. The rosary is a perfect compliment to these wonderful books. I can see why you want to keep them.

  8. Lovely.....Wonderful Site. I live in South Carolina....born and raised in New England, in a French speaking family. Moi, je parle Francais. I love anything French. God Bless You.

  9. Love these- any chance you would sell them on here?

  10. These little books are wonderful. I find myself doing what you do when I come upon a vintage treaure...wondering what the person who originally owned the item was like and how it came to be in an old box in a flea market years later. I get especially sad when I see forgotten old family photos of unidentified people from long ago. Great post!

  11. Beautiful books. I, too, would have been drawn to them. Thanks for sharing. I often go through the same thought process when purchasing vintage items. I have even purchased an item because I felt sorry for the creator and the fact that their family was selling their handiwork. I am sure YOU understand. Hugs, Ginger

  12. Oui, je parle un petit peu francais, ami!
    giggle. Great finds my friend. lovely photos too. Biggest Hugs!
    P.S.I lived in France for 4 years just outside of Paris :-)

  13. Les petits lits sont tres jolie! I'm smitten by their lovely color and typeset. Why not just keep a few to display, they look lovely the way you've arranged them!

  14. Hi, friend! I'm admiring all your creative posts here. Can you please share them at the Creative Bloggers' Party & Hop? Hope to see you there at the party :)

  15. Loved the color.. I just loved the pictures.... Thanks for sharing.. Jules ♥

  16. What a treasure they are lovely and the color is just perfect. I know what you mean about the owner, don't you just know that there is a romantic story behind them. Thanks for sharing, Kathy

  17. Oh they're so cute! I took French in high school and college, so I'm always looking for cute things like this to practice with (not that I'm near fluent). I would love such an adorable collection.

  18. Bonjour
    Je parle français and I read some of those books.
    I'm sure that the pleasure should have been more in the vintage books.
    Nice presentation
    Have a nice day

  19. Hi, Liz! Thanks for stopping by my blog and following! I am your newest follower and I am looking forward to reading your blog. Your banner photos are just beautiful!

  20. These are just precious. You need to learn french now...:))

  21. no french for me but i can admire your lovely book finds

  22. These are your photography of too :) I can just imagine how you felt when you found these old beauties in the bottom of a tattered box...isn't that where the best stuff usually is at?!
    Big hugs,

  23. They are wonderful! I love the color, I am sure anyone who gets them will love them as much as you have. Thanks so much for sharing.

    :) Michelle

  24. You are out of my league when it comes to French. I do good to speak English. I wish I could speak a lot of different languages. but too late now.

  25. I'd be excited to score anything so lovely too!

    Dawn... The Bohemian


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