Big announcement!History In Photographs will be joining some friends from Worthpoint on September 14, 2018 at the Lakewood Antiques Market. We’re beyond excited to explore one the best antique markets in the United States.
For those of you who aren’t as associated with these Georgian roots, the Lakewood 400 Antiques Market is always held on the third weekend of the month, except for December. With over five hundred spaces and an abundance of parking, the market offers antique jewelry repair, restoration, appraisal, and furniture restoration.
As a child, my mother and father lugged me to flea market and antique markets alike. To give you an understanding of the extent of it all, every seller at the local flea market up where we vacationed each summer in Maine could sense my father’s presence the moment we crossed the state border. We usually rolled into our home’s rocky driveway close to midnight, and the only light out was the moon shinning high overhead. Although you would think a man might want to sleep in past dawn while on vacation, my father did not. He was too eager to take his daughter to visit the fleas down at the market. I often was happy to oblige because where there were fleas, there would be a diner, and where there was a diner there was breakfast, and where there was breakfast, there was… moose tracks ice cream.
Moving forward, my family visited the fleas every day. In a way these men and women were like an extended family to me. I heard them talk about real life with my family, and I was exposed to in depth history of my country at a younger age than most. Although the flea marker is nowhere near as dignified as the antique market that was right next door, there were a few secrets I learned in my two decades of parading around. So here is my gift to you, my top five tips that can help anyone shop and buy the best pieces at flea and antique markets.
1. Get there earlyYes, I know that you have heard this before. More than likely when following this advice, you show up ten minutes early, and everyone else shows up an hour and a half late. I get it, you don’t believe me. But you see, pickers are a whole different type of people. The most informed buyers go early and get the high-quality items, so you want to be around them. Even if you aren’t the most informed on an item’s value, interact with the men and women. You’ll be amazed to find out how much value that turkey caller you scoffed at earlier is.
2. Bring a listIt is easy to get distracted because it is a sensory overload. The loud voices, hot dog breath, people moving all around you, the interesting mixture of coffee and egg sandwiches… it can be a lot to take it. Before you embark on the adventure, write yourself a list. Present self will thank past self for taking twenty minutes to brainstorm and jot down what it is that you’re looking for. Naturally you want to be open to finding treasures that are beyond what you could even dream of, but please do yourself a favor and have a plan or you will get distracted.
3. Love the shape more than the colorCraft stores exist for a reason. If you love a frame or a table, and you think the shape would be beautiful in your home, then buy it. The finish, color, and fabric can always be altered. For example, I absolutely adore the rustic, farmhouse decor look. My personal Pinterest boards are full of antique white pieces, rustic wooden signs, and beautiful iron trinkets. I am a strong advocate for re-purposing furniture because it is better for the environment, but it is also a nice craft to fuel your inner artist. I buy mismatched furniture and strip the paint. Then after sanding the wood, all that is left is to coat the stripped furniture with a few layers of paint, and bam! Your home will look so coordinated and put together. So, remember this tip, it is the shape, not the color, that matters.
4. Splurge on the UniqueIf you stumble across a piece that is nothing like you have ever seen before, and you love it, then you better snag it. If you must ask yourself three times “should I get it”, then that means that yes, you want it, and yes, you should jump on it. These unique finds are what transform your house into an artistic home.