The NYC Big Flea

Last weekend The Big Flea was back in NYC!  It is only here a couple of times a year so of course I had to go.

Flea markets are the best places to find one of a kind items for your home at prices you can afford. It’s the perfect place to practice your bargaining skills because it's pretty much expected that all things are up for negotiation;  yet another reason why flea markets are so great, you can bargain your way from a good deal to a great deal in minutes.  It’s all up to you.

Last year when I went to The Big Flea I had one goal in mind, buying art for my home which I successfully accomplished, (I’ll show you my finds a little later). This year I went strictly to look and get inspired.  Flea markets are a great place to find inspiration and let your creative juices flow.  There is so much to see all under one roof.  I decided to take my camera so I could share this fun experience with you all.

Clothes

Absolutely no risk of ever seeing another woman in the same dress as you when you wear something from the flea market.  Rest assured you will be the only person in the room with one of these on.

Absolutely no risk of ever seeing another woman in the same dress as you when you wear something from the flea market.  Rest assured you will be the only person in the room with one of these on.


Furniture

If you've ever seen the show Flea Market Flip with host Lara Spencer, you know that a flea market find can always be transformed into something new.  It's important to be able to look at an item for sale and envision how it will look once you put some TLC and creativity into it.  The possibilities are endless! 

Top Left:   This would be the perfect chair for a vanity or even a desk..  I love the fabric and print but I would definitely paint the chair frame a dark navy blue.  I think the dark color would be the perfect contrast to make that fabric and print pop.  I would use the table as a side table next to a bed or in the living room.  I would also give it an antique gold finish.   Top Right:   This set would be a fun coffee table because you can move each piece around to create whatever shape or style works best in your living/family room.   Bottom Left:  Great Egyptian style coffee table.   Bottom Right:   I love old trunks as furniture.  You can use the inside for storage and the top of the trunk as a bench at the foot of your bed   (milneinc.com)  .

Top Left:  This would be the perfect chair for a vanity or even a desk..  I love the fabric and print but I would definitely paint the chair frame a dark navy blue.  I think the dark color would be the perfect contrast to make that fabric and print pop.  I would use the table as a side table next to a bed or in the living room.  I would also give it an antique gold finish.  Top Right:  This set would be a fun coffee table because you can move each piece around to create whatever shape or style works best in your living/family room.  Bottom Left: Great Egyptian style coffee table.  Bottom Right:  I love old trunks as furniture.  You can use the inside for storage and the top of the trunk as a bench at the foot of your bed (milneinc.com).


Side note flea market tip... The Big Flea was here for only one weekend.  The best time to go is the first day (Saturday) because you get to see, pick and choose from fresh inventory so to speak.  By day two (Sunday) there is still a lot to see but you can pretty much assume you missed out on some fabulous day one finds.  Day two unfortunately can feel like left overs rather than the main course but remember left overs are still better than no meal at all!  Unfortunately, I had to go to The Big Flea this year on a Sunday, so I think I may have missed out on some good furniture.

Jewelry and Accessories

Everything in this glass case was so sparkly and pretty.  It's all vintage Chanel.  The jewelry and accessories seen here cost way more than I am personally willing to spend but the man selling them was really nice.  He let me try things on and arranged pieces so I could get some good pictures.  The two pieces on the right are belts.  If you are in the market for vintage Chanel you can email him at roy.rover.jewelry@gmail.com

Everything in this glass case was so sparkly and pretty.  It's all vintage Chanel.  The jewelry and accessories seen here cost way more than I am personally willing to spend but the man selling them was really nice.  He let me try things on and arranged pieces so I could get some good pictures.  The two pieces on the right are belts.  If you are in the market for vintage Chanel you can email him at roy.rover.jewelry@gmail.com


Whimsical Items

Top:   Classic ventriloquist puppet sitting amongst vintage metal letters.  You can find these and other nostalgic items on   DansParentsHouse.com      Bottom Left:   Cute Scottish Terrier in his traditional hat.   Bottom Right:   Unique door handles.

Top:  Classic ventriloquist puppet sitting amongst vintage metal letters.  You can find these and other nostalgic items on DansParentsHouse.com   Bottom Left:  Cute Scottish Terrier in his traditional hat.  Bottom Right:  Unique door handles.


Interesting People 

Check out her winged sneakers.  No doubt she's calculating the price of things with her Tony the Tiger covered phone.

Check out her winged sneakers.  No doubt she's calculating the price of things with her Tony the Tiger covered phone.


Home Décor and Lighting

Some of you may be overwhelmed seeing all of these items bunched together on one table or shelf while perusing the aisles of the flea market but you must use your imagination.  Picture how one or two of the items you see in front of you will look in your home, on the wall or on your shelves. Imagination is key.  

Top:   All items in the top pic are from   OldeGoodThings.com    -The pendant lights would look great above any kitchen island.  They have a special glass design on the underside that looks amazing with the glow of the light.  The mirror would look great in any room or entryway.   Bottom:  Cool industrial lights

Top:  All items in the top pic are from OldeGoodThings.com  -The pendant lights would look great above any kitchen island.  They have a special glass design on the underside that looks amazing with the glow of the light.  The mirror would look great in any room or entryway.  Bottom: Cool industrial lights


Don't forget, this can be stimulation overload when looking at everything together in one display area.  You have to imagine just one or two pieces to bring into your home to make it special.   Right Side:   These were made in the 1930's by homeless men who carved the designs into old cigar boxes as a way to make money... (Well, at least that's the story the woman selling them told me).

Don't forget, this can be stimulation overload when looking at everything together in one display area.  You have to imagine just one or two pieces to bring into your home to make it special.  Right Side:  These were made in the 1930's by homeless men who carved the designs into old cigar boxes as a way to make money... (Well, at least that's the story the woman selling them told me).


Another flea market tip... always ask the person selling the items you want for the history and story behind them.  It makes your unique flea market find much more interesting to talk about (and in general) when you have lots of background information on it.

Art


Last year I was in the middle of redecorating my apartment when I went to The Big Flea.  I was shopping specifically for art to hang on the walls.  There was a lot of empty wall space that needed to be filled.  I wanted to fill it with one of a kind pieces that had a story behind them and some history.  Art is really personal;  people connect with and relate to it in many different ways and for different reasons.  I wanted to get art that not only looked good in my rooms but were also pieces I could look at and love.  I love each one of the three pieces I ended up getting.

This piece is called a tapa cloth.  It's made from the inner bark of the mulberry (breadfruit) tree.  Tapa cloths are a handmade ancient art form from the Polynesian Islands.  This one is from Samoa.  It wasn't framed when I bought it so I was able to easily fold it up and bring it home.  I soon realized that it was extremely delicate and a bit tattered.  I knew the only way to really show it off properly and keep it in one piece was to have it framed.  Caution!!  Framing large pieces of art like this is super expensive!! Had I known how much it would cost to frame I may not have bought it but I must say I love the way it looks.  It's really dramatic on this wall in the dining area and I love the bold, graphic, tribal design. 

This piece is called a tapa cloth.  It's made from the inner bark of the mulberry (breadfruit) tree.  Tapa cloths are a handmade ancient art form from the Polynesian Islands.  This one is from Samoa.  It wasn't framed when I bought it so I was able to easily fold it up and bring it home.  I soon realized that it was extremely delicate and a bit tattered.  I knew the only way to really show it off properly and keep it in one piece was to have it framed.  Caution!!  Framing large pieces of art like this is super expensive!! Had I known how much it would cost to frame I may not have bought it but I must say I love the way it looks.  It's really dramatic on this wall in the dining area and I love the bold, graphic, tribal design. 

Top:   Wide shot of the main living room wall.   Bottom Left:  Oil Painting -Thank goodness this was already framed when I bought it. This piece makes me think of people and shadows.  I like the distressed, abstract look.   Bottom Right:   This metal piece is from Olde Good Things.  It's from the ceiling of an old firehouse station.  I love the texture and distressed look, (those are anchors).

Top:  Wide shot of the main living room wall.  Bottom Left: Oil Painting -Thank goodness this was already framed when I bought it. This piece makes me think of people and shadows.  I like the distressed, abstract look.  Bottom Right:  This metal piece is from Olde Good Things.  It's from the ceiling of an old firehouse station.  I love the texture and distressed look, (those are anchors).


Overall my trip to The NYC Big Flea was a success.  I got some really good pictures and lots of inspiration... but did I really think I could make it through the entire day without getting anything? Personally I was hopeful but unsure :-/  As I was walking down the final aisle I spotted a pair of beautiful, one of a kind lamps that looked like they belong on the pages of Elle Decor Magazine...(or at least they'll look that way once I give them some TLC and get the perfect black, cylinder shades for them)!  The older couple selling them were retiring from the antique business and wanted to get rid of all the items they had.  They gave me a price for the lamps that I just couldn't refuse.  I didn't even have to bargain with them, they reduced the price in half once they saw I was interested.  

So even though I don't personally need lamps for my own apartment, it's hard to pass up a steal of a deal when it's presented to you.  Plus, I know there is a potential client out there with the right space and home to perfectly fit the style of these lamps.  And when I place these beauties in their entryway, living room or on their bedside tables, they will love them as much as I do right now. I can already imagine how fantastic and dramatic they will look!  See how my creative juices are flowing? That's what the flea market does for me and I hope our little adventure through The NYC Big Flea has done the same for you!

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