Monday, November 15, 2010

Flea Markets

It was a clear, windy and cold day but very sunny so we decided to see what was available at a Flea Market in The Big Apple. After all, this was a big city with very sophisticated people and shoppers. Only 10 blocks away was the Hell's Kitchen Flea Market, described this way:
"Named one of the Top Ten Shopping Streets in the World by National Geographic, Hell’s Kitchen Flea Market sets the standard for distinctive vendors, where the fashion ├ęclat, collectors and top-notch hagglers still delight at fine old things, memorabilia, original art & antique."

Shoppers, Flea market fans and casual wanderers, pay attention here: NOT SO!

It was only about 3 blocks worth of tables set up on both sides of the street, three to four tables deep. The vendors committed the worst sin of all in my opinion -- no prices marked on anything. I HATE that. I don't want to have to ask about everything on your table, I want to see what you think is a starting haggling price or is your final offer price. Then I'll know if I am even in the ballpark, money-wise and don't have to waste time asking about every little thing. As for "distinctive vendors" I'll have to take a Neutral on that. Some stuff was interesting but there was so little offered that it seemed more desperate than distinctive.

If you want Flea Market, go to Round Top in Texas. There, we measure shopping by MILES of tables, not by blocks. The tables and booths can be lined up 25 deep in a row off the road. Think I'm kidding? Go here. We've walked the fields from Clutter's Field to Zapp Hall on the east side of the road only and it's taken us a whole day to get that far. Yes, some people like Pasadena's Flea Market but again, we measure our shopping by MILES, not by a parking lot. And we cover 6 different towns.

Okay, we only have it twice a year, not every weekend. But it lasts for two weeks each time. If you are savvy you know to come a week before it officially starts because that's when the vendors buy from each other and set up. So we get 4 weeks a year, 28 days, as opposed to New York City's 52 weekends or 104 days. New York gets 4 times as many shopping days but only 3 blocks of booths as opposed to MILES of booths in fields....

Sorry, New York, we love your city but in a Flea Market Smack-down you just don't cut it. And you didn't even want people to take pictures of you! The pictures you see here are from Antiques Weekend, Round Top, Texas, NOT New York City.


Anonymous said...


ArtPropelled said...

Man..I nwould love your market! 25 Tables deep? .... and those square buckets .... and vintage buttons!

martha brown said...

Ummm, I think that I would travel to Texas just to come to your flea market.....
I am so with you on the prices thing. I am sure that I miss some great deals, but I don't have time to ask prices -- I just walk on by.
Was the lady in the red boots there? Is that why you went :)