Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Flying Samples

The whole purpose of my trip was of course to see what baskets are on the French market, what's new, and go see a few suppliers. I buy direct from the manufacturers in Madagascar and Morocco, but some things I wouldn't mind buying from those same countries via France. That is, I can have a lot of styles and colors recreated, but not all. More sources are good!
I was looking for neutrals, shoulder bags/totes, and some red. Most of these flew out the first weekend at the markets, with the exception of the red one, the gold stripe and the neutral set with bronze handles. They were showing a lot of metallics on the Riviera, tons, so I bought some of those. I am keeping the little gold handled Morocco basket since it is perfect with my little gold gladiator sandlals, but probably won't order it; my supplier in Morocco specializes in artisanal, traditional baskets (and frowns on the trendy stuff like gold metallic!), and that is my focus in the market: to supply the traditional aticles. It was interesting that the silver trim bag (fully lined, with drawstring closure top, wonderful, also available in gold trim) was the last to go, but the day it did, I had two other women come to the booth wanting it because they saw it going through the market on another woman's shoulder. People are so funny! The one that went first was the similar seagrass basket with brown leather trim; awesome purse/bag and the one I am most likely to order.
I got two baskets in neutrals and in what I call a "shopper size" with a slightly keystone shape. Perfect for groceries. They do not have covered corners but are light and also squish up very well, so good to pack in a suitcase. I am keeping the cognac colored one with the geometric raffia border to use for a while, and I am loving it for the grocery store since it's pretty big! Both of these shoppers have wonderfully soft and slightly aged leather handles.
The one with the stitched flowers is a lovely little basket with a wooden base to keep it flat. I carried that bag all over France and bought multiples of them. All the rest are just singles. Call me of course if you are interested in pricing or details.

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