Tag Archives: flea markets

On the Road: Rose Bowl Flea Market

27 Jul

I crossed a Bucket List item off a few weeks ago and made a trip to California to go to the Rose Bowl Flea Market.

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I think I saw maybe 30% of the entire market, but let me tell you, it didn’t disappoint. The market is held on the second Sunday of every month and it’s an easy early morning flight that gets you there with plenty of time to shop. Or so I thought. I flew in to LAX Sunday morning with the hopes of a celebrity sighting or two, but sadly, no luck. By the time I got my rent car and made my way out to Pasadena, it was 11:00. 4 hours. Should be plenty of time! HOLY CRAP. This place is huge!!

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Arial view. Courtesy of http://www.fleamarketinsiders.com

The market is separated in to sections by types of merchandise. Furniture, antiques, housewares, etc. Booths that sold vintage jewelry, bags, and some clothes were mixed in to the “Antiques” section and there were plenty to choose from.

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You know that sweet Fort Worth one came home with me!

Vintage carpetbags

Vintage carpetbags

I spent about 2 hours roaming around, not willing to commit to buying anything just yet. I mean come on, everyone knows the better prices are in the booths way in the back that cost less. So, I’m about to commit, to go back and find the booths with the Whiting & Davis snake necklace, the fringed leather jacket, the hundreds of tooled leather belts. And then I see this:

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More vintage? Seriously??

Seriously.  I only have 2 hours left and NOW I find this. How did I not know? (Note to self: That map they handed you when you walked in might have been a clue. Just sayin’.) By this time the mild California weather is beginning to look more and more like a Texas summer day with temperatures creeping in to the nineties. Find me a bottle of water and I’m good to go.

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One of at least 20 booths that sold vintage bags

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My friends, you have not seriously flea marketed for vintage until you have flea marketed at the Rose Bowl. Hundreds of booths. Bags, coats, T-shirts, dresses, belts, cowboy boots, even new crap that is “vintage inspired”. (Umm, why??) Kid in a candy store does not even begin to describe the overwhelmingness.

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Vintage T-shirts. 5 for $20.

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This booth was twice as long as you see here. Everything was $10.

I shop, I dig, I bargain, I spend every penny of my $200 cash budget (minus the $8 it costs to get in. Parking is free though). Trust me, I could have spent way more. Finally, by 3:00 I’m exhausted, starving and as I haul my trash bag full of treasures across the parking lot, I can’t quite remember where I parked my rent car, let alone what my rent car even looks like.  Fortunately, my hotel, food and a nap are only a few minutes away and as I drive there I’m already trying to figure out how and when I can come back. Wanna go?

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Flea Market Adventures

6 Aug

I have a friend at church whose daughter Lauren is going in to the 6th grade. She is cute and freckly and you can see the emerging fashionista in her with her copper metallic Sperry’s, friendship bracelets and hair bows. She also apparently loves to shop and when my daughter told her recently about our trips to the Flea Market on Sunday afternoons she thought there could be no better way to spend a Sunday. So, even though it is August, and 847 degrees by 10am, I decided yesterday that we’d brave the heat and go check out our favorite Sunday afternoon shopping sites. We invited Lauren to go with us and before I could get the words out of my mouth, she was nodding and grinning bigger than Christmas. I told her to dress cool and bring water and we’d come by and pick her up after church.

Flea Markets are one of my most favorite places to shop for the store. You just never know what you will find. The Cattle Barn Flea Market has its regular tenants, so at the least you can count on a few great jewelry booths and know the $5 parking fee wasn’t a total waste. But aside from the tried and true vendors we always stop at, it’s worth the time to roam the aisles looking for treasures. Our first stop was at Sue’s, the biggest jewelry booth at the Market. Lauren thought she had died and gone to accessory heaven. She has her $5 bin, her $3 bin and then the major fabulousness locked up in jewelry cases across the aisle. I try really hard not to look in those because I usually can’t afford her prices. We dug in the $3 and $5 bins and through the cufflinks and found some good stuff.

My 14 year old daughter that went with me is in a “I want to redo my room” stage. I swear, I think I hear that every 8 months. It seems every third time she opens her mouth to speak, the words that come out are, “I saw this thing on Pinterest…” and now she is all Martha Stewart. Regularly I’ll get texts during the day with random supply lists for her latest project. Thank you Pinterest and Craft Wars for creating a DIYer with a list of projects I now have to fund. In any case, she was looking for anything she could repurpose in her new and improved room. She came across an antique cylinder shaped tin grater on a “50% OFF” table that she thought she could spray paint and use as an earring holder. Pretty clever, I thought. However, it was still tagged $20, and even at 50% off that was more than she wanted to pay.

 

We proceeded on our hunt and came across a booth with some vintage clothing on a rack. I start flipping through and the owner of the booth came over and said that all the clothing was $2. $2?!?! It’s probably all crap, I thought. But no! Some seriously good pieces! It got even better when we found the $.50 boxes of belts and scarves. We cleaned up there, spending a whole $16 and filling our tote bag. Lauren snagged a cross necklace for $2 at another booth, and as we were now sweaty messes, we made our way to the exit. Allison still had the grater on her mind so I asked her how much she wanted to pay for it. $8, she said. Then go over there and tell him that is all you have. She shyly walked up to the booth owner and he told her it was 50% off the $20, so $10. She showed him her money and said all she had was $8. He held out his hand to take the money and the grater was hers. It is now expertly spray painted and holding the vast collection of earrings we bought at our next stop.

As we got in to the car, we told Lauren we were going to Junker Val’s. She sweetly asked if it was air conditioned and we assured her it was. Junker Val is antique/junk dealer who recently opened a shop on Bluebonnet Circle. She is only open Fri-Sun, and it is a treasure trove of all of her estate and junking finds. The biggest draw, for us anyway, is her $10 and under jewelry table. Again, Lauren’s eyes lit up like fireworks. She planted herself in front of that table and it was a good hour later before her I finally had to drag her and Allison away. Finding matching earring sets was highly rewarding and Allison left with 4 or 5 sets. Lauren got 2 bracelets and I found some great cuff links and an awesome turquoise cuff bracelet. All in all, a highly successful day. I promised Lauren we would do it again soon, but maybe wait until it got a bit cooler.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Don’t Tell Mom…I may be a Hipster.

9 Apr

My best friend called me a Hipster a few weeks ago. It has obviously had a resounding affect on me, as I’m blogging about it weeks later. Her definition of a Hipster was someone who didn’t like something every one else liked. She said it was because I shop at resale, vintage, and thrift stores. I frequent flea markets, and quite recently Canton, which I’m currently obsessed over now. Thank you East Texas. And because I liked Adele WAY before anyone else did, and now that the whole world is Adele obsessed, I couldn’t care less. So this got me thinking…what is a Hipster, really? If I went by my best friend’s definition, and I try not most days, I’d have to say with shame that I am a Hipster. But before dive into self loathing and start wearing a fanny pack to be “ironic” let me research this term “Hipster” just a little more.

If Aline’s definition of Hipster is correct, then my mother might’ve been the first one. Dare I say I’ve turned into my mother…? Nope, I will not admit this as of yet. According to my good friend, Google, a Hipster is someone who follows the latest trends and fashions. Well, that makes almost every girl in the free world one then. However, according to my distant cousin, Urban Dictionary:

“Hipsters are a subculture of men and women typically in their 20’s and 30’s that value independent thinking, counter culture, progressive politics, an appreciation of art and indie- rock, creativity, intelligence, and witty banter.”

Oh dear God, it is not looking good for me right now, and I know many of you are starting to feel the same. Or at least I hope you are. However I have to say, perhaps this all has to do with the way I was raised. I thought that it was important to have independent thought, not go-with-the-flow, and appreciate intelligence and creativity. I certain appreciate intelligence in my friends, otherwise, the conversation is quite dull. Urban Dictionary goes on to say that while “Hipsterism is really a state of mind, it is also often intertwined with distinct fashion sensibilities. Hipsters reject the culturally ignorant attitudes of mainstream consumers, and are often seen wearing vintage and thrift store inspired fashions, tight fitting jeans, old school sneakers…” From this I have to conclude that while Hipsters do not like to look like every one else, they all dress alike…? The article later concludes that they all dress in a fashion depicted in that of Urban Outfitters and American Apparel ads. They also reject the stereotypical male/female archetypes that society portrays as “good-looking”. And while stores like Old Navy, The Gap, and American Eagle now carry “worn-style” jeans, they are simply following a path that Hipsters have carved out before them from wearing thrift store clothing that is worn that way, because it was worn that way.

I have to wonder now, what will the Hipsters of tomorrow be wearing, since everyone is going to start wearing what Hipsters wear? Are the outfits going to become more and more outrageous as time goes on, simply to avoid finding a look-alike crossing their path? As a woman, there is truly nothing worse in this world, or at least to me, as walking down the street to my favorite restaurant, glowing about how awesome I look in my new ensemble and coming upon another girl wearing the same thing. Thank you Forever 21 for making this happen more often than not. Even as most recently we’ve had girls come in the store looking for vintage prom dresses. After all, it would be the end all be all if a girl showed up to your prom in YOUR dress.

So it looks like the world is going the way of the Hipster after all. I don’t think this is such a bad thing. I may have to say that as I may unwillingly admit I do fall under this category sometimes. When I am not taking my kid to school early in the morning, not going grocery shopping, and not going to or from the gym, I tend to dress myself according to my own standards that may not match up with everyone elses’. A girl likes to look her best, and not like someone else’s best. Good luck to all you fellow Hipsters out there! I’m sorry to bring such news to you on this rainy Monday. Take pride in who you are, and please don’t forget to appreciate intelligence, Hipster or not!