Loading Fun

We talk about shopping at flea markets and the thrill of the hunt. It never gets old--anticipating, arriving, shopping, shopping, and all of the comaderie with vendors and shoppers with like interests. When we go to Alameda, we take the truck and concentrate on furniture and home accessories because, for one, there are unlimited options, and two, the loading of the truck is pretty convenient for two gals. This is where the hard work begins!


IMG_1810IMG_0010


When we get to this not-so-fun part, there are a lot of things to remember to take the stress out of this step.


IMG_1820


1. Notes! It is so important to take good notes. For us, we like to shop row by row. We make purchases and also ask certain vendors if they will hold the large items until the end of the day (which they are always happy to do as this could make or break a sale). We then write a brief list--row, space number, and how much we paid.


IMG_1788


2. Water, water, water...and the Feel Good Bakery! Before we go, Stacy will freeze water bottles so that we have cold water all day to keep hydrated. And the bakery? It does just what it claims, it makes us 'feel good'!!


IMG_1595


3. The collapseable carts are perfect to carry the essentials and to pack all the smalls and breakables in. The more you can fit in these carts, the better. When they are filled, we take the booty to the car to unload, then enter again by showing our stamped hand. We are then ready for more!


IMG_1809

IMG_1802


4. When it is time to pick up the BIG items, we head to the loading area and pick up a cart. There are all different sizes and it is important to pick the proper size (it is so frustrating to wait for a cart only to see that someone is rolling away with one that only has a few items on it). On this particular trip, we had our list and loaded row by row.


IMG_1804


5. Once all our purchases are picked up, we head back to the loading zone. One of us will then pick up our vehicle and head back to "the zone". One of the nice "loader men" will usually flag us in, or have you wait until a space is available. Once we get a spot, we bring our load to the car and start loading. And now for the awesome part...if you need, these nice men will actually help you load! We make sure to tip them accordingly. On this trip, because there was a lot, we tipped ten bucks. He was so grateful and made an extra effort to see that everything was secure and tied down. The way I see it, ten dollars is worth it--so that my husband will not be irritated at me that I bought that last piece!


Basically, regardless of what everyone else is doing, use your manners, ask for help, and the whole experience can be totally fun! Happy Flea Marketing!


IMG_1807

The Weekly Six (and then some)

This last weekend we had the store covered so a few of us hit the road. We were in a small car with a limited amount of cash and we wanted to make our trip a stretch. We stopped at a few yard sales, then a few estate sales, a gift shop at the San Miguel Mission (hot tip we got)--it was tiny yet charming! By this time we were already skipping with excitement (that is the rule), and we thought that we better hit the road and get some miles in so we didnt wake up an hour from home.

As we got to the San Jose area we hit up some of our personal faves: Ralph, Betsey, Pinkberry, and Free People! With a dose of inspiration, we then headed to Ikea for a few accessories.

To save money, we were able to crash at our friend Stacy's mom's house. We were only 8 minutes away from Alameda Flea!! What a hoot! We loved everything we bought and it was all smalls.

IMG_0599
IMG_0636
2011-07-08
A homemade vinatage redwood memory, super cute concrete mushrooms, porcelin dogs, a lil' espresso set, travel goods, and a flowy summer dress...perfection.

IMG_0582

We have been coveting the rugs above for a while. They are pre-war gypsy rugs from the Balkan Islands. The colors are so vibrant and the workmanship is amazing! These rugs cost a bit more than we usually spend, but if anything warrented a leap of faith, these rugs certainly did! We have one in red with large flowers that is finished out with fringe, it is priced at $575. The second one is a beautiful off white and taupe and is highlighted with a chartreuse garland and deep ruby flowers, it is priced at $495. Compared to what is on the market in a lot of reproduction stores, these originals are a no-brainer.

IMG_0586IMG_0590

Last but not least is this multi-colored handmade blanket/bed cover. After scoping out the new Free People store, we are not afraid of color! Very 70's and very rare! I bet alot of you either had one or had a grandma that tried to hand one off to you.

This road trip was very inspiring and one for the record books--great company, great finds, and we met a lot of great people too!

The Alameda Flea

We went to our fave flea market this past Sunday, The Alameda Point Antiques Faire. It takes place the first Sunday of every month. There was so much style and eye candy galore. As always, it is sooo overwhelming when we first arrive with the abundance of things on our mind--coffee, yummy croissants, smalls, furniture, and of course, which way to go, oh my!!

(all images above by stephanie)

IMG_0021