This is one of those great events that you count down to. I waited for months for this flea market, asked for the day off a month in advance and every day got a little more excited. The Elk City flea market is a bona fide 'dig through boxes and bargain big' kind of flea market. My husband even asked for it off. I hate to admit it, but I let my daughter play hookie to go with us. At first she was disappointed because she didn't want to miss school but I assured here there would be someone selling rocks, so she decided it would be okay.
If you've never been to a flea market/ townwide yard sale before, here are a few things that work for me
1.as you think of projects you want to make, or elements you are wanting to add to your yard or house, write it down (preferably on your phone). This way when you get there, you don't forget all of the things you were going for in the first place. I think it's easy to get caught up and overwhelmed with all the STUFF.
2. Make a quick once-around. About a million times I've taken my sweet time while I watch person after person walk past me with big marvelous things that would look perfect in my home/yard/as a gift. When you arrive, force yourself to walk quickly past each booth and look at all the BIG stuff. It's easy to miss the big beautiful piece in the corner when you are digging through the little boxes.
3. Take several large bags. Fold one inside the other until you need it. Luckily, I usually have Ryan to take my stuff to our vehicle when my hands get full. Sometimes I don't, though, and it's nice to not have to keep making trips and just putting everything in my bags. I've seen some people take little wagons, and that would work too.
4. Pack a lunch. I don't want to be starving and the only options be cheesecake on a stick.
5. Keep larger bills in a different pocket. I used to keep all my money in one pocket and unroll it all out to pay. When you do this, the big bills can fall out and will be lost forever. This also looks bad when you ask the seller if they will take five dollars and you pull a bunch of twenties out of your pocket when paying.
6. If you want it, GET IT. If there's something that is original, you can't get on ebay or the local store, and you LOOOVEEE it, buy it. Chances are, if you wait until you come back through, it will be in somene elses hands. And that's just no fun.
7. My biggest tip is to SMILE and be nice to everyone. The vendors sit there for hours and hours and are usually hot, tired and have worked very hard to set the whole thing up. My big pet peeve is people who point out a flaw in something and then ask to take less. If you want to offer a few dollars less, that's great, but don't be rude and make them feel bad because their product doesn't meet your standards. I see the guys on 'Pickers' do this all the time. They try to make the 'ol guy feel bad because his bike is rusted then they go home and sell it for a couple thousand.
Lucky for me, a rock booth was one of the first we came across! All of the vendors are SO nice and helpful! Breckin came home with some rocks that she didn't have. A rock that held a votive was also a new part of her collection. So pretty at night!
At the end of the day I am tired, we have all found beautiful treasures that we can't live without...and my little nature girl didn't spend a single dime for her favorite find.....
Going to a flea market or yard sale isn't really all about buying for me. The fun lies in finding a piece that someone is considering throwing out. I love teaching my daughter that when you dust something off and show it a little love, that anything can be beautiful. Something that someone once treasured is given a special place in our home and given another chance.