Mélanie Vassart, decoration journalist and passionate bargain hunter

Mélanie Vassart, journaliste déco et chineuse passionnée

Celebrate the passing of time and the imperfections that result. It is with this philosophy that Mélanie Vassart, a decoration journalist for 10 years, imagined her online vintage store Éloge. Aspiring to a slower life, consuming less and better and meeting the essentials guide our daily lives, between city and countryside.

Who are you ?

Mélanie Vassart, 32 years old. I live in Puteaux, near Paris, and I am currently renovating an old farmhouse in the Algarve, in the south of Portugal.
I have been a decoration journalist for 10 years (notably for Home Magazine which advocates Slow life) and in parallel with my writing activity I hunt for my online store of second-hand objects, Éloge .

What are your sources of inspiration?

Both nature and the city amaze me. I grew up in the countryside, where life outside taught me to savor the simplest things. The smell of evening dew in summer, a field of wheat golden by the sun, a walk in the forest to pick chestnuts in the fall, a bouquet of flowers gleaned during a walk... are real madeleines of Proust. In the city, it's the architecture that gains all my attention. A historic building, a wall with an assumed patina, a piece of mosaic as if lost in the concrete… I often wander around with my nose blowing in the wind, eager for new discoveries.
And since I have had the chance to travel, I have let myself be charmed by the captivating shapes of the Bardenas desert as well as by the alleys of the hilltop villages of Greece.

Your small everyday gestures for a more sustainable world?

Take public transport rather than the car, use bulk bags to do my shopping, give rather than throw away, buy second-hand as much as possible both for decoration and clothing, reduce my meat consumption, use natural products to cleaning… for several years, I have gradually introduced new actions into my daily life, which seem so obvious to me now. There is no miracle recipe, but I am convinced that everyone at their own level can define their own areas for improvement.

Your advice for adopting a Slow lifestyle?

Knowing how to disconnect is a daily exercise. Since the birth of my daughter, I have learned to put things into perspective much more, and to give myself real moments of break. But sometimes I realize that I'm getting caught up in the crazy rhythm of life again, so it's not yet a given.

Certain meetings during the week allow me to slow down: lunch outside, the Sunday morning market followed by a little coffee on the terrace, preparing the meal with a podcast in my ears (when possible), and of course weekend flea markets.

But it is especially in my work rhythm that things have evolved the most. When you're self-employed, it's very difficult to set limits. The 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. days were my daily routine, and I often opened the computer again after dinner. Now, unless there is an exception to complete a project, I finish at 6 p.m. I'm better organized, I procrastinate less, and it gives me a real evening to relax and enjoy my partner and my daughter.

The advantages of antique decor?

Assert your personality! By adding vintage pieces to your interior, you create a unique space that suits you and reflects who you are. In addition to adding a touch of originality, they arouse a feeling of nostalgia and singularity. To stand out, there's nothing like it!

What I like is of course to mix all these finds with new and artisanal pieces: crockery brought back from Morocco, a wicker vase unearthed in Mexico, cutting boards found at a craftsman in the south of Portugal etc.

Why should we favor second hand when possible?

Today, 9 out of 10 French people buy on the second-hand market. I find these figures so encouraging! Besides the question of price which is not always an argument, it is also the history of the object, its unique side, the traces of time which give it its charm which seduce me.

Before buying new, I always have the reflex to consult classified ad sites to find what I am looking for, at a lower price and which still has many years to live. And very often, I find exactly what I wanted, sometimes just a stone's throw from my house, and at least half the price.

By consuming second-hand, we are both making a gesture of solidarity and good for the planet, but we are also participating in a circular economy that fights against overconsumption. We help to reduce the amount of waste, as well as the extraction of raw materials to make new objects. It's not bad, is it ?

Your mantra?

“A place for everything and everything in its place” . This sentence from Samuel Smiles gives rhythm to my daily life. By applying this motto in my work and at home, I feel more efficient and organized, and as a result, I am much less stressed.

Your favorite piece at Nunamae?

The Jude rug in recycled cotton which found its place in white in my daughter's bedroom, and in beige in my living room. Easy to live with, to clean, soft underfoot, it has it all!

Photos: Brice Martinelli & Marine Burucoa


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