- Retail stores branded vintage are usually the more expensive option due to rent, and other factors. More so in California where mid-century is SUPER hip, vs. what I have seen out of state.
- Craigslist can provide great deals. BUT it is competitive. And you have the whole annoying Craigslist factor.
- eBay has been my guilty pleasure for many years and bargains can be had for sure. However, eBay prices are starting to seem closer to retail as most sellers are fairly savvy.
Turns out there is another incredibly effective way to buy mid-century modern, vintage and retro in Southern California.
|From RoseBowl Flea Market|
Of course it was hot as hell. Awesome.
And awesome! The Rose Bowl's parking lots were stuffed with antique, vintage and collectible treasures. It was hard to know even where to begin. I immediately began wandering up and down the aisles, not really shopping, but assessing. Do they have the right stuff?
Old Fiesta to feast your eyes on.
Here we go!
Super trendy hister sign letters. These were everywhere. The hipsters were hauling them out by the bucketfuls.
Outdoor stools. I haven't the foggiest who the maker is, but if I was in the mood, these would come home and get their tops redone. Perfect for ad hoc patio seating.
Pricing was SUPER reasonable. SUPER. I was shocked over and over again, at how inexpensive everything was. I arrived kind of late, at noon. By this time, the merchants were eager to NOT take their merchandise home. Any reasonable offer would be considered and counter offered. Reasonable to me was many furniture pieces were less than $300. Many nice pieces of glass and pottery were less than $50.Most art was less than $100. Not garage sale cheap, but pretty inexpensive.
Using antlers and such is a decorating trend you see nowadays. Except it is kind of gross.
Asian furniture and art could be had easily. Our proximity to the Far East helps a little I think.
This is a GIANT Jesus, I do believe. And, I think he is a relic more or less from a church.
Glass glorious glass!!!!
Imagine five to ten of these hanging at different lengths on a new patio cover.
Decent end table.
Over at A Good House, Stacey was inspired by a vintage anatomy chart.
And look, a whole box of them! Nice.
More vintage sign works.
I totally don't get this. A very nice lady had an entire booth filled to the brim with these purses. Vintage Coach, Dooney & Bourke, and Tijuana handbags.
And the booth had a constant stream of young girls in their twenties laying down their twenties for what I consider gawdawful ugly purses.
Course, I have owned, at one time, many of these.
So, lesson here is, if you are hoarding any of these purses:
- They are back in style so break them out OR
- Get thee to eBay and sell them. Now. It could be your last chance.
This big trend was everywhere. Touched up industrial type furniture.
Super darn hip and trendy. And cheap.
I kinda dig this mailbox. But honestly, is it legal to own? What would you do with it? Pet hotel? Toddler time out?
Some Hey-Wake or lookalikes at good prices.
I bumped into some mid-century lighting. I wanted to buy these both very badly. But didn't feel quite ready yet.
Lots and lots of furniture.
The whole thing opens at 7AM for a special preview VIP price, and typically dealers come in and take the pick of the initial litter. General Admission starts at 9AM. Merchants start packing around 2PM and entrance tickets are shut off at 3PM.
I was really on a discovery tour and wasn't doing any serious shopping. These are my
TOP TEN TIPS for shopping effectively at the massive Rose Bowl Flea Market
- A truck or an SUV.
- A friend (hopefully a strong friend).
- A wheel shopping cart or large bag to carry small goods
- Snacks and water
- Cash. There were ATMs outside the entrance but a $5 fee (or maybe $10, I can't remember) and far away from where ever you find your stuff. Guaranteed.
- No fear of negotiating. The first price is not the best price.
- Ideas of things you want. Otherwise, utterly overwhelming.
- A plan for walking through (can be confusing) and study the map in advance.
- Yourself early for the best stuff. Yourself late for the best deals.
- A discerning eye. I'll soon share my fabulous buy and my great mistake. Lessons learned.
1001 Rose Bowl Dr. Pasadena, CA 91103
And yes. I had to check it out.
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Oh. I am kind of a Project Runway freak. Here is this video of Heidi Klum shopping at the Rose Bowl Flea Market with her decorator. Very cute.
And yes. I had to check it out.