C’est les Soldes !

June 27, 2012
“Soldes: Day One / ‘I remain Zen.'”
This funny illustration of the first day of “Les Soldes” was created by my friend Flavie Solignac, one of the many fine and talented people who I somehow have the good fortune to be surrounded with.
You can check out more of Flavie’s work here.

C’est les soldes! 
– The sales are on!
les soldes the sales
tout petit – really small; really little; tiny
un tout petit budget – a tight budget
fringues – (familiar) threads, as in “clothes” (a more dated translation would be “glad rags”)
la période de soldes – sales period
une vitrine – store window
se bagarrer – (familiar) to duke it out, to fight
une bagarre – (familiar) a fight
une bonne affaire – good deal, bargain
faire la queue – to line up
un long moment – a good long while
vous encaisser – ring up your purchase(s), or ring your purchase(s) up for you (“encaisser quelqu’un” means to ring up a purchase for someone)
se fringuer – (familiar) to deck yourself out, to dress up
électromenager – (plural) electrical domestic or household appliances
un bon rapport qualité-prix – good value for money
faire du lèche-vitrinewindow shop (literally “to lick the store windows”)
une queue – lineup
la caisse – the cash register
faire des économies – to cut corners, to save money
la première démarquethe first markdown ; “les soldes” in France generally involve several markdowns, with bigger discounts as you go along


It’s the first day of the summer soldes in Paris!

I’m on a tout petit budget at the moment and therefore not really in the market for new fringues, so I had completely forgotten about the upcoming période des soldes until I was walking home last night and passed a few vitrines that had already put up their signage in anticipation of The Big Day.

If my experience with last year’s soldes is any indication, tonight after work, I imagine, women will be flocking to the likes of BHV, Printemps, Maje, and various other boutiques to se bagarrer over les bonnes affaires, and snatch up the choice items they’ve been carefully staking out over the last few weeks. If you’re planning on joining the fray, prepare yourself to faire la queue un long moment with other impatient shoppers, though if you’re lucky, there’ll be extra staff on hand to vous encaisser. After all, whether you’re looking to se fringuer or just pick up some électroménager, the période des soldes is always a good opportunity to get un bon rapport qualité-prix.

If you’re curious about how “the sales” work in France (they’re government-regulated!), I wrote a lengthy post on them last year, explaining the whole, complicated process.

As for me, I think I’ll just faire du lèche-vitrine and avoid the long queues at the caisses. I’m hoping to do a little travelling come fall, so I need to faire des économies.  Of course, that said, it’s only the première démarque—we’ll see how long my resolve lasts!

Happy shopping!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: