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A French-Inspired Garden and Home by Judith Stringham

Blue Limoges Hine Cognac Stag Bottle

Saturday, September 15, 2012

Nothing is more exciting than finding a rare treasure at a flea market in France.  The flea markets in Paris are well known and bring top euro / dollar for their items.  The most exciting thing I found in the French flea markets was in Carsac.  Carsac, France, in the Dordogne region, has about fourteen hundred residents and is over six hours away from Paris.  Yes, there are still real deals to be found in French flea markets.

Here's the story I promised in an earlier post.

The vintage blue Limoges commemorative X.O. Hine Cognac stag bottle shown below was a real find.

As soon as I saw it, I was drawn to it.  Picked it up, knew I loved it, thought it made me think of Christmas, wondered if I could resell it, put it back down, walked away, came back, asked the price, walked away again.  Then I found another item I liked from the same dealer and made a deal for the two items.  The bottle was still sealed with a plastic seal around the gold top.  Inside you could hear liquid swishing as the bottle was shaken.  It contained the original cognac.

Back home, I placed it in the Country French Christmas sale last year.  Priced at $25, I wasn't sure anyone would buy it.  Didn't matter since I loved it so much...  Within an hour of opening our doors for the first time to sell things in Botanic Bleu, one of my long-time friends arrived and began selecting items to buy.  She has been to France and has French-inspired Christmas decorations in her home.  After I told her where I bought the little blue stag, she immediately decided it was going home with her.


A few days after that I decided to search online to see what I could find out about the meaning of X.O. Hine Cognac.  Oh, my!  What a surprise to find that Hine Cognac company commissioned Limoges china makers to make different commemorative bottles for them over several years.  Several bottles were listed on e-Bay for sale, including one just like the one I bought and sold.  Latest bid on e-Bay?  $399!  How thrilled I was to find that the little blue stag was a real treasure.  I called my friend to tell her what an amazing deal we both had made. 

Botanic Bleu doesn't have another little blue Limoges stag for sale this Christmas, but we do have a little blue Limoges Eiffel Tower from France. 

Yes, there are still true deals in French flea markets, best found in the rural areas.  I learned that I should research before I sell, not after.  

Have you found an amazing deal at a flea market, garage sale, or second-hand store?  Post a comment telling about it.

Until next time, keep your eyes open for real treasures in flea markets.  You never know what you may find.

Country French Christmas is Coming

Botanic Bleu