Rose Bowl Flea Market

by Kristen at The Red Velvet Life on August 25, 2011 · 9 comments

Hi, Friends! First, I have to say — it feels so good to blog again! Velvet Husband and I are about to leave for San Diego, where we’ll be volunteer leaders at a Young Life Capernaum camp. In college, I was on ropes course summer staff at Frontier Ranch, a Young Life property in Colorado, so I know from experience that we have an action-packed weekend ahead!

So, what have we been up to in the interim? I could paste all of my cover letters, but something tells me that’s not what you’re looking for. And since I don’t bring my camera aboard my academy horse, I have no adorable horse pictures to share. However, I do want to talk about our fruitful flea market trip!

Velvet Husband and I recently joined Lynsey and her husband for a Sunday morning double date at the Rose Bowl Flea Market. Held on the second Sunday of every month, the flea market has a great selection from thousands of vendors. They came prepared. Let’s just say this was not Lynsey’s first rodeo.

Billed as the shopping place of design stars, the Rose Bowl Flea Market boasts an unexpectedly large selection of unique goods ranging from refurbished furniture to jewelry, clothing, and art. And if you think I’m kidding about the stars, check out Heidi Klum’s recent flea market visit. For a novice flea marketer like myself, it’s reassuring to know you’re in good company! We saw several camera crews while we were there, but alas, no Heidi sightings. (I suppose she was OUT — German accent mandatory!) It would probably be overwhelming to go this alone for the first time, so I recommend going with experienced flea-marketers. {Check!}

I also recommend going to the flea market with a goal in mind. We knew exactly what we were looking for and were willing to leave if we didn’t find the right fit — our lonely dining room table has been begging for chairs ever since we bought it in San Francisco. At the time, we didn’t find the right chairs, so we purchased a bench that got the job done for over a year and a half. Now that we feel like eating at our dining room table more often, we set off to the flea market to complete our dining room.

After finding loads of items we didn’t need, we finally found our chairs! Velvet Husband and I knew right away that we found the right chairs for our budget.

We made an offer, the vendor accepted, and it was a deal. We absolutely couldn’t resist the price. Good thing we were early birds, because there was a group of frustrated people next to us who were waiting to buy our beloved chairs.

Ah, like my dad always said — early bird gets the worm! They were such a good deal that it felt like we robbed the place. Just look at those thieves in action!

When we got home, Lynsey and Seth had already unloaded them because they got back to our place first. Thanks, y’all!

Fantastic! We also just purchased a Pottery Barn rug that brings the room together. We’re very happy with it not only how it looks and feels, but also how we were able to dress up our dining room on a budget.

Only problem is — now I feel sorry for our lonely bench. As I write this, Velvet Husband is finishing up some work from home in a new chair, and I’m sitting in one of our new chairs, too — my back happily supported. That poor bench won’t be getting much use.

Flea Market Tips

  • Get to the flea market as early as possible — you will have to pay a small premium to get in early, but it’s worth it to have the best selection!
  • Wear sunscreen and a hat — it gets awfully toasty in the summer months.
  • Come with cash — most vendors won’t accept checks or credit cards.
  • Go with a goal in mind or risk walking out with lots of items you don’t need!
  • Bring a measuring tape and come with dimensions.

Have you ever shopped at a flea market? What was your experience?

{ 9 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Rose S August 25, 2011 at 12:03 pm

Very cute chairs! Glad you are stimulating the economy and saving the earth too :)


2 lindsay August 25, 2011 at 5:11 pm

ahhh, that reminds me of the Canton flea market. Did you ever go when you lived in TX? so fun!


3 Jayme @ Runner-n-Spice August 25, 2011 at 7:47 pm

I love the fabric on those chairs you bought! So “at home” feel.


4 Erin @ The Grass Skirt August 26, 2011 at 4:58 am

What a great find! I love flea markets, but I have to say…I’ve never found anything exciting! Haha. Have a great weekend! :)


5 Sara @ Nourish and Flourish August 27, 2011 at 10:09 pm

Oooh, I LOVE the new chairs! Congrats on your big find! Isn’t it exciting to find something you love for a price you love too? :)

I’m an occasional flea market-goer, and while I greatly enjoy the experience, I always feel a bit overwhelmed! So many fun things to look at, not nearly enough time (or money!).

Hope you’re having a great weekend, Kristin!


6 Melissa August 28, 2011 at 8:36 am

Hope you’re having a great weekend at your camp! I went to a flea market once when I was in high school, but wasn’t really in the market for anything cool. I would love to go again now that I’m a grown up and have a space to fill! :)


7 Katie August 29, 2011 at 10:48 am

Have missed u and the mr !!!

Ha! Love the pic of u two , so sweet, him pushing the cart ; )

I love flea markets, u can find some cool stuff at them! Love the chairs u scored! The table looks so nice and that rug is great!

Thank u for the congrats!!! We are super excited!!



8 Claire Bear August 30, 2011 at 3:04 pm

I demand more horsey posts. :D In January there is a huuuuge month long horse show and I think we ought to go check out the (future, ahem) competition. ;)

love love love to you both.


9 Claire Bear August 30, 2011 at 3:05 pm

(And it’s near Palm Springs! Heck yeah!)


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