Tips for Flea Market shopping trips

flea.market www.aliceandlois.comI was lucky enough to spend the morning and early afternoon at the Alameda Flea Market yesterday. It is held the first Sunday of every month. It is AMAZING!

There are over 800 booths located on Alameda Point, about 25-30 minutes from the city. All items at the market are meant to be 20 years or older. Any new items for sale at the market are to be made from repurposed goods that are over 20 years old.

My main objective was to look for a kitchen island and wood boxes to use for a new table display for a craft show I’m doing in Berkeley next month. With my comfortable boots on and coffee in hand I was ready for a flea market adventure.

Although I didn’t find a kitchen island that was on the top of my list, I came home with two lovely wood boxes and a beautiful globe for our family.

It can be an intimidating experience at a flea market, especially if you are new to it. I’ve created a list of my top five tips for shopping at a flea market below.

5 tips for flea market shopping

1. Be organized – Go into your morning with a plan. Have a list of specific things you are looking for. It is so easy to get completely distracted.

I recommend “casing the joint” when you first get there. Walk the perimeter of the market to get the lay of the land. Make notes on certain items/shops you like and their location so you can browse around and come back.

2. Be friendly – It is best to be friendly with everyone at the flea market. The shop keepers have been there very early and they respond better to shoppers that are kind and considerate.

3. Be respectful – When negotiating prices with shop keepers, be respectful. Many of the items they are selling could be part of their personal collection.

4. Be open-minded – It is best to come in with a list of items you are in need of for projects or decorative pieces for your home. But, do not get disgruntled if you can not find exactly what you are looking for. You might just find a treasure that was on the bottom of your list.

5. Be creative – If you find items that you love and are drawn to, come up with creative ideas on how to use them. You can even be inspired by items that you see…


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