My Year of Yes: It’s spring, therefore I Braderie

I was chatting with author Marie Bilodeau at the Sweet & Spicy convention in 2006, and she said something like, I buy at least one new piece a year to rejeuvenate my wardrobe.

This is a very French thing. She’s not buying all sorts of garbage just because it’s on sale. She’s not kicking her entire wardrobe to the curb, which is wasteful. She has a wardrobe she likes, that she refreshes periodically with the intelligent addition of a few pieces.

Now I am that French (or at least Montreal) thing. Every April and October, I buy directly from the designers at la Braderie de mode québecoise. Cheaper for me, but I also love meeting the actual designers and people who love fashion.

I even wear a certain outfit for the Braderie, so I can try things on and off easily, without lining up for a change room:

Not this exact outfit, but same idea. These are the Fete de Montreal leggings.

Not this exact outfit, but same idea. These are the Fete de Montreal leggings. Don’t know what that means? Read on.


Boots I can walk in and shuck on and off (NOT fashionable zip boots—I can take the hit now for the glory later)

A fitted black dress

Layers on top

It gets meta. As soon as I stepped into the melow corner at the Braderie, a salesperson welcomed me and said, “Are your leggings from La Fete?” She did a project on La Fete at fashion school. And yes, these are Fete de Montreal leggings that I got for $15—my favourite leggings in the entire world.

Here are pics of me wearing melow from a previous Braderie. I bought this when I was 8 months pregnant with Anastasia. I delivered her three days after this yoga class.


I’m still wearing it. Does it get any more fabulous? The designer, Melissa Bolduc, was a figure skater, so she really understands fabric’s stretch and lines.



Stay tuned for pics of what I bought at the April 2013 Braderie!

Also, one of my many to-do projects is The Cheap and Lovely Guide to Montreal, so like this or comment if you want to hear more about it.