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Adive on where to buy furnishings


Adrian

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We're on the verge of buying our first property in France would appreciate advice about where to buy furnishings etc. Obviously we'd need to buy electrical goods in France, but what about beds, sofas etc - would you buy in France (Bergerac would be our nearest big town) or would you buy in the UK and ship over?

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I think it's difficult to find decent quality furniture in either country. The French taste in furniture seems very different from our own. I have a French neighbour who is proud of the fact that all her stuff is inherited and that she has never had to buy any and she's not talking about valuable antiques just every day serviceable pieces.

We really wanted to buy French but like so many other Brits ended up going to Ikea. At least it isn't quite such a manic experience here.

Hoddy
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Totally agree with Hoddy.

When we first bought here and were faced with a completely empty house to furnish we bought beds from But which have been (and still are)  good. Ikea Bordeaux will deliver so it is worth buying a lot in one go to make the delivery cost worthwhile.  Conforama has also been useful and Fly / Atlas.

Later we found a few pieces of furniture at the brocantes and also on le bon coin but it takes times and energy to hunt for and find the right things. Le Troc is worth a look if there is one near you also the Emmaus depots.

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Ikea and Emmaus furnished our house. In general, I find French furniture from normal shops is really not to my taste. I was lampooned on here many moons ago by certain people because I don't have a downer on Ikea but I prefer my furniture simple and serviceable, rather than something that would perhaps look more at home in the Flintstone's cave. When we bought, we just hired a van, drove to Ikea, filled the van and came back with enough furniture to make a start. Since then, we've added bits from here, there and everywhere.

Troc de L'ile is also good, like the curate's egg. We have one in Royan that often has some fab stuff, and one in Saintes that's pants.

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Betty, the Saintes Troc is not always "pants" [blink] We have found one or two things there including some good wrought iron garden chairs. It all depends on the day and what they've got in stock. Anyway it would be a drive too far for those living in the Dordogne.

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I know, Cendrillon, you're right. But the difference between the two is that in general I can go to Royan anytime and find good stuff, whereas I go to Saintes and probably only find good stuff every fifth or sixth visit. Mind you, there was one time where they were selling some beautiful, whole, brand new barrels for 30€ each, which seemed a snip...if only I had something I could do with a whole barrel....Norman??

I think I bought my "coffee table" (which is actually an aged trunk) in Saintes.

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Mattresses are a tricky thing, I think. Most of our beds have good quality British mattresses bought online for very reasonable prices as we knew what we were looking for in terms of firmness, othopaedic (or not), springs per square... [8-)]whatever the measurement is, etc.

We have two French mattresses which cost more than the UK-sourced mattresses and are about 50% of the quality. They aren't wearing as well - even with thick, soft waterproof mattress protectors. But getting British mattresses to France was easy for us as we're 90 minutes south of Caen so transport wasn't a hassle.

If I was in the market for chairs and sofas, I'd probably buy from Ikea and choose plain fabrics and then personalise with non-Ikea throws and cushions, etc.

You could look at some of the mail order companies...

La Redoute Maison

3Suisses

Or you could see what's available on your local AngloInfo - people are moving on all the time and you can often pick up (for a good price) something they've found in a brocante or depot vente and no longer want / need.

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I'd definately buy mattresses from Ikea. They do all sorts at all prices and come with a 25 year (I think) guarantee. We bought beds from there as well which were very cheap. I wanted leather furniture for the living room in our new house, so we watched Leboncoin for something we liked to come up locally and got an almost new sofa, chair and pouffe which had cost €4,500 for just €850!

Leboncoin can easily become addictive!

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[quote user="Pommier"]

Leboncoin can easily become addictive!

[/quote]

Don't tell me, Pommier!

To date I have bought furniture (sideboard, rattan conservatory set, wooden blanket box), crystal chandeliers, curtains, German cutlery, French porcelain dinner service, walking boots, sports clothes, bed linen, table linen, seeds and bulbs, books, handkerchiefs and that's just off the top of my head![:-))]

I have often wished I could start all over again with our move from the UK.  I'd bring nothing except myself, OH and the dog.....[:D]

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We bought and brought all our furniture  over from the UK (spread over several hire van trips).. this included our kitchen, TV, HiFi etc. We bought our white goods in France.

We never found any furniture that appealed to us in French shops.

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We also used Ikea for furniture beds and  matresses The advantage is  its instant furnishing no ordering and waiting weeks for delivery

Conforama for white goods .cooker fridgefreezer washing machine and the TV. The thing about using Ikea is you can always visit your local UK one to see and try out and decide  whats wanted as the same stuff is in France , Probably priced in euros what it is in pounds in the UK.  Ikea France web site I used to compare prices

 Supermarkets  such as SuperU do a van hire service which I found very reasonable if you want to go that way instead of paying the delivery charges and wait for them to get round to delivering to you   

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