If you’re looking to embark on a different kind of weekend escape this summer, consider planning a getaway around an antique show or flea market. In addition to being a ton of fun, these shows often take place in interesting locales that are more than worthy of a weekend adventure.
We recently packed our bags and headed up to Brimfield, MA with interior designers, Danielle Walish and Jessica Stambaugh (@DecTraces), to explore the largest antique show in the country. The Brimfield Flea Market takes place three times a year, and attracts over 6,000 dealers from across the country.
You can find everything from mid-century and industrial treasures to imported linens and country furnishings. There’s also a large selection of vintage jewelry and clothing. Quite simply, whatever you’re looking for, chances are, Brimfield has it.
Visiting a flea market can be a little overwhelming for a first timer. Here are some tips from Danielle and Jessica to make your trip a success.
Tips for Flea Market Success
Be Prepared for the Heat – You’ll be spending lots of time out in the sun, so make sure to bring that SPF, a summer hat, and lots of water.
The Early Bird Catches the Worm – If you’re really looking for the best buys, get to the show as soon as the doors open. Hardcore buyers will even line up ahead of time!
Dress for Success – Dressing appropriately with comfortable, lightweight clothes will make your day much more enjoyable. For men, we recommend the Cedar Springs and Path Point shirts. For women, the Conundrum and Lake Hailey shirts.
Set a Budget – Set a price limit and keep track of your purchases. It’s very easy to get caught up in the antiquing atmosphere and buy everything that catches your eye, so make sure to set an overall spending limit.
Take Your Measurements – If you have a specific space you’re looking to buy for, make sure you know how big/small it is, and bring a tape measure with you so you can ensure your purchase will fit.
Don’t Be Afraid to Negotiate – Everything is negotiable. Always remember that dealers mark up prices expecting buyers to offer less than the asking price.
Enjoy the Local Fare – Flea markets usually host a number of local vendors that serve up delicious food. Make sure to try some!
If you don’t live in the Northeast, and can’t make it to Brimfield this year, there are plenty of other shows and flea markets to check out. Antique Trader has a comprehensive list of events across all 50 states for you to choose from.