Habitat be damned. For authentic French fashions look no further than Nice’s second-hand emporiums.
Many Riviera rental properties are Ikea-identikit, a trend that won’t change when the Swedish furniture giant opens its latest branch by Nice airport in 2016. But for those prepared to rummage, the castoffs from our French cousins – from distressed dressing tables to porno chic chaise longues – are effortlessly à la mode.
With €500 in hand we hit three second-hand megastores. Our mission? To add Gallic flair to our fictional pied-à-terre for the price of a Habitat chair. Week 2: Solidarité 06
In a line: Beware, this stock was literally given way
Design: Car boot chic
Deal of the day: Yves Saint Laurent men’s trench coat (€16)
Dud of the day: 1990s plastic tray adorned with scene of Red Square and BMW 3-series (€1)
Details: 30 rue Bonaparte
Description: Where car boot castaways go to die. This two-floor charity store takes stock from all-comers. It will gladly take your house clearance goodies too – it’s all in a good cause. But in the piles of junk there are bargains to be had. With a bit of selective purchasing, glasses, clocks, lamp stands and cups can add a vintage touch to any Nice pad.
Solidarité is particularly strong on ex-hotel linen, with piles of fine white sheets (€5) to rifle through. Basic homewares are also a bargain. Café-style cup and saucer sets (from €3) offer budget bistro chic. Bizarre buys stock the remaining shelves. If you need a second-hand baby bath (€15), a set of authentically dented pétanque balls (€5), or even a Paris edition of Monopoly (€2), this is the place to come.
Le Creuset pan €5
3 complete sets of white bed linens €45
Mirror-topped occasional table €12
Kerplunk board game €2
Grand total: €66 (dropping €500 here would buy you the entire store)