The Furnishings


Now that you’ve got an apartment, you probably want to start furnishing it. There are department stores like any other country and you can read about some of them on our Commerce Page, so we won’t go over them (they can always pay to have an ad spot). Luckily, there are lots of other solutions.

Les Puces –

The Parisian flea markets are famous worldwide, and with very good reason. You can find a treasure trove of beautiful furniture for negotiable prices. The best season for flea markets is the warmer months, when vendors can stick around longer due to good weather. Perhaps the most famous market is the Puces de Saint-Ouen in the North. This is a huge market packed with vendors with various specialties (from Art Deco furniture to 19th century etchings). The website is in English and French and can give you all the info.

Emmaus –

This is something like the French equivalent of the Goodwill or Salvation Army. Emmaus has a goal: provide affordable used items to everyone. Unlike antique or consignment shops, you can find beautiful furniture (as well as some average and even not so hot items) for very little money. Going to a local Emmaus is well worth the time, you can find some wonderful stuff.

Craigslist –

This is great for all kinds of furniture. Like other city’s craigslists, there is a page for garage/moving sales (vide grenier). These are great because people often have no choice but to get rid of their expensive, nice things before moving overseas (it can also be a bunch of crap). If you wait long enough and aren’t desperate enough, you can really luck out. Watch Brenna’s story of her not so successful garage sale attempt…

Le Bon Coin –

Similar to craigslist, you can furnish an entire apartment from this French site.

Les Brocantes

Brocantes take the best of the flea market…and sell them for more money. The advantage of the brocante is they don’t have special hours and arelocated downtown (mainly in the Oberkampf area of the 11th). These are very charming shops where you can find a one-of-a-kind piece of furniture or décor. Here are a few addresses.

Atelier 154
154 rue Oberkampf, 75011
Métro Ménilmontant
Tel : 06 62 32 79 06
Belle Lurette
5, rue Marché Popincourt, 75011
01 43 38 67 39
Trolls et Puces
1, rue Marché Popincourt, 75011
01 43 14 60 00
Tombées du Camion
        • 17, rue Joseph le Maistre, 75018
        • 44-47, Passage des Panoramas, 75002
        • Puces de St-Ouen, Marché Vernaison, Allée 3, Stand 107



Ikea is an international sensation for inexpensive, do-it-yourself furniture. There are French equivalents… But here are the various addresses of Ikea. There are a bunch of Ikeas in the Paris area, but the biggest is the Paris Nord 2 store, located right next to the Charles de Gaulle airport. Like all Ikeas, these are not centrally located, but hey, if you’ve got to have that Billy bookshelf, then you have to be willing to put in the time and effort. Now you can order and have delivered some of their items, but that can often negate the savings you might gain from going the Ikea route. We recommend getting to Ikea by….

Find a location here.

Leroy Merlin

There are many reasons we love Leroy Merlin: low prices, friendly service, and on-trend decor, but most of all we love it because it is located in the center of Paris. Compared to Ikea, Leroy Merlin is much more DIY friendly, with a large range of garden supplies, furnishings and anything you need to fix up a house. Their magazine, Du Côté de Chez Vous even has a cult following.


“Chez Casto, il y a tout ce qu’il faut”, was for years the slogan of this DIY mecca. Less yuppized than Leroy Merlin, Castorama is the place to go when you need to repaint, tile, or install lights.


Conforama has a wide range of home furnishings. Although pricier than Ikea, the stores locations are much easier for those who don’t have access to a car.


Alinea offers a huge selection of furniture at all price points. Stores everywhere and a great site where you can order just about anything.


For all your “electromenager” (dishwashers, washing machines/dryers, stove tops, ovens, TVs…) and all the small stuff (iron, fans, printers, coffee makers, speakers, kitchen appliances), Darty has it covered. Read our effusive blog post on the Darty experience.


About Author


I've lived in France since August 2006 with a stint back in Washington, DC for a year. Ten months of my time in France were spent in Rouen - the Normandy town known for, among other things, Joan of Arc's death and Monet's study of light. With the years that pass, Paris is constantly transformed by the interesting people I meet who open up new doors in this amazing city.

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