REN­O­VA­TION TIPS

Living France - - Décourez -

I read your ex­cel­lent fea­ture on DIY in France from your au­tumn edi­tion (is­sue 292), but no­ticed you missed a trick. The DIY stores in France are not only use­ful when work­ing on your French prop­erty; they are also great for ma­te­ri­als and prod­ucts for self-build­ing in Bri­tain. We built our house in Sur­rey us­ing lots of items from France – shut­ters, door han­dles, light­ing, tiles, stone floor­ing, bath­room cab­i­nets, plumb­ing fit­tings, paint, oak, cur­tains, wood pan­elling, etc. The French prod­ucts are dis­tinc­tively dif­fer­ent and of­ten cheaper, and you can claim the VAT back. The stores you men­tioned all have branches in Calais and Dunkirk, just a few min­utes from the fer­ries, and staff are ex­tremely help­ful.

You could have also men­tioned the won­der­ful ar­chi­tec­tural an­tiques dépôts and mar­kets in France for vin­tage fit­tings for homes in France or Bri­tain. We found rails upon rails of stun­ning hand­crafted Art Deco items in a vil­lage near Lyon for about £200. The Jas des Roberts Sun­day morn­ing an­tiques mar­ket near St-Tropez is our favourite for orig­i­nal Art Deco light fit­tings, un­usual fur­ni­ture and rus­tic Provençal items. Jon Walls­grove Sun­bury-on-Thames

If you have some­thing you’d like to share, from anec­dotes to hol­i­day snaps, drop us a line at let­ters@liv­ingfrance.com or to The Let­ters Editor, Liv­ing France, Cumberland House, Oriel Road, Chel­tenham, GL50 1BB. We re­serve the right to edit your let­ters. face­book.com/ liv­ingfrancemagazine

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