Today, a well-known, discounted-luxury-good website has a firm selling French furniture. This is interesting for a number of reasons, not least because many of the items for sale are ones that we are familiar with from France and which we have, ourselves, used in our decorating.
First up, a Vetrine. This has been painted in something like a Farrow and Ball mid-tone grey (maybe Annie Sloan's Paris Grey) and has had some rather-nice lettering put on the glass. It has also been mildly distressed into a shabby chic style. It currently costs £1,399, down from its pre-sale price of £2,250.
Below is a Vetrine which we bought in France this summer and which we are re-painting at the moment. It has broadly the same structure as the one above with the same glass fronts, the curved paneling at the bottom, three hinges on each door, the same paneling on the sides and pretty much the same feet. Our one has four shelves - which were being painted when this picture was taken. We have painted ours in Farrow and Ball's Blackened, a slightly grey white.
Our base unit cost E80 and was bought from a brocante on the way to Oleron from our house. It has taken about 10 hours of work so far, so imputing a cost of £50 per hour for my labour, I would probably be happy to sell it for around £500.
The current work scene in the garage - the shelves of the Vetrine are leaning on the freezer along with some sealed and primed cladding for the downstairs bathroom in France
Also on the website is a second Vetrine, this one priced at £1,649, down from £2,900 pre-sale. It is painted in something very close to the colour we've used above. It has two basic shelves and a mid-shelf that contains one or possibly two drawers. And it has the drawer near the base.
We have one of these more or less identical in France which is mid-paint. It has been put back together in the double bedroom in Petits Chats and just needs its final top coat and the doors re-fitting. Ours cost E130 from the local branch of Emmaus and has perhaps taken 15 hours of work. So we would values ours at, say, £750.
Next time we go, I shall get a picture of ours for comparison.
But this does just show how cheap it can be to do these yourself