If you think that vintage is just old peoples cast offs and moth balls its time for you to get a little thrift shop savvy because you are wrong my friend! Prepare to enter a narnia of style and on of kind because once you go vintage you don’t go back!
My obsession started when I went to Rose Bowl Flea Market Pasadena, CA: From high-profile designers to antique collectors and vintage clothing fanatics, people have been flocking to this legendary flea for over 50 years. And I can see why: With over 2,500 vendors, you’re bound to find whatever you’re looking for at the Rose Bowl. Keep your eyes peeled for celebs, too—both Heidi Klum and Jessica Alba have been spotted there. Not convinced? Would rather stick to Topshop? Topshop head designers regularly attend this flea market to get inspiration for future collections (so there!).
A Few Tips and Tricks for Shopping the Flea Market:
Go early. The good stuff goes fast. Believe it or not, it’s more expensive the earlier you go; the price drops from $20 to $15 at 7am.
Prepare for crowds. Rainy days are great because people loathe rain. In case of rain, bring umbrella.
Bring cash. A few vendors accept checks or (gasp) credit cards, but not all of them do, and even those that do, will probably give you a better deal if you are willing to pay cash.
Bring snacks and water. The concessions at the Rose Bowl Flea Market are lame and I don’t know why. But take my word for it – lame, overpriced hot dogs and water – not a fun time.
Bring a great big canvas bag for all of your loot and room in your car.
Bring a tape measurer and write down all your measurements, vintage clothing sizes are different to modern sizes.
Don’t get blind sited by the fact its vintage, ask yourself if this was in Topshop now for this price, would I buy it?
If you like the shape but not the fabric or colour, buy it and get it copied at your tailors rather then trying to find the same thing somewhere else
If there’s something you like but you’re not 100% sure you want to buy it, or in the alternative, if there’s something you buy but it’s big or heavy and you don’t want to schlep it until the very end, write down the booth number. I know that seems silly, but the flea market is huge and you will forget which stall your prized fill-in-the-blank is.
Shop with an open mind. Things can be painted, fabric can be changed, stuff can be cleaned. But if it needs a lot of work, don’t overpay.
If you fall in love with something that doesn’t quite fit, remember that vintage items can always be nipped and tucked to make them perfect for you. “Don’t be afraid to invest a little bit of money to have it properly tailored to you.
Dont fancy the market? Try these stores:
The East Thrift Store, London
Street sales, Mission San Fran
Lula B’s West, Dallas
Fabulous Fannys, New York
Palm Desert, CA
Dont fancy travelling around the world in order to get these vintage goodies? Try these online stores and get it shipped straight to your door:
The Vintage Studio
Black Pegan Vintage
Style and Salvage