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Posts Tagged ‘Flea Markets’

Flea Market newbies ~ with my “Soul Sistah”

July 11th, 2011

phpo6gkumpm1Who knew that hard work, sweat and hustling could be this much fun?

My friend Kristie, who owns the Green Owl in Urbana, and I got a burr in our saddle!  Tired of the ole grind, we wanted to test our shabby skills at the Springfield Antique and Flea Market this past weekend.  We had no idea what to expect and were completely ignorant about the “rules,”  but were willing to pursue our notion believing there could be more than one “ho” at the hoedown.  (inside joke ~ but still very funny)

Four and half loads later and some help from our neighbors with our frustrating tents, we set up a shabby chic Shangri-La (as our neighbor named it).  We were so excited for the Flea Market to open.

Friday was a bit slow.  It rained in the morning.  We heard so many complaints from our neighbors, but the rain didn’t dampen our spirits.  We had a great first day with great sales and amazing new friends.

Saturday… game was on!   Our booth transformed about four times as merchandise left.  We definitely were in our element.  Kristie and I are natural hustlers and love people.  We met amazing new friends, like Jen Diehl and her husband Jason who own The Ritzy Rose. We were excited to have business owners from Columbus and Grand Rapids buy from our booth for their shops.

I love the culture!  Everyone was so friendly and helpful.  It was more than obvious that we were newbies.  It was fun to be the under dog.  To our relief, people went out of their way to make us feel welcome.  Our neighbor bought us an Urbana Hillclimber glass in remembrance of our inaugural booth.  How sweet is that?  The organizers of the market were super flexible with our naivety and ignorance, bending the rules a little for us.   Kristie and I got a kick out of the casual announcements coming from the office:

  • The owner of the Olds Mobile:  Your car is running.
  • Rick (name changed) please report to the office.  Your wife is out of money.

The ever-changing Shabby Booth:

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At the end of the day Saturday we were dumb founded when most of our neighbors packed up and left.  I guess the veterans of this business know something we don’t.  However, we were pressing on.  We paid for a full weekend and were staying put.  We decided to do a complete transformation of our booth and spread out in their spaces.  We left on Saturday evening completely exhausted, but in love with our “new” booth and excited for another day.

Sunday was a slow but steady stream of people.  We ended up making some really good sales and met some more amazing people.  It was a hot day and the exhaustion was starting to sink in.  Even still, our sprits were high!  We had so much fun walking around as people were packing up.  Some vendors even gave us stuff they didn’t want to haul home.  We were on a mission to buy for our next booth.

soul sistahs

One of the vendors asked if we were sisters, observing that we walked the same and carried our sweet tea the same way.  We thought that was funny and said, “No… but we are soul sistahs.”  That gave us something else to laugh about.  At this point we were getting a little slap happy….completely fried and giddy with our sales.

Our first Flea Market was a huge success!  We had great sales, met and connected with some amazing people and learned so much.  We laughed and had moments of frustrations.  After packing up Kristie’s truck, we had the biggest laugh of the whole weekend…. Shabby Chic truck loadYes, our beautiful shabby chic booth was reduced to a beverly hillbilly truck load.  We couldn’t stop laughing as we drove slowly down the road.  People were whipping out their phones to take a picture of this unbelievable sight.  When we stopped at a gas station I had fun with a guy who gave us “the look” asking him, “Ya like what we bought at the flea market?”

Moving forward…. we are excited for our Shabby Sidewalk Sale on July 30th at the Green Owl and are scheduled to set up at two upcoming markets.  We will be at Back Roads Flea Market on August 6th and the Springfield Extravaganza September 16-18th.  Come out and see us!

This burr in our saddle might end up being just the thing we needed!  We just need to come up with a good name for our shabby gig… any suggestions?

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Adding another line to my business card

July 6th, 2011

Doing life being tiff means living life and pursuing all good ideas to the fullest.

My latest adventure!

For the past couple months I have been immersed in the creative world of repurposing, upcycling and creativity.  I am working on connecting a few clients with the interior design industry using social media.  I have been so inspired by the blogs and Facebook pages I have found in the process of researching.

In our past life, my husband and I renovated homes.  We lived and worked in four of our projects, only to sell them and start over.  I miss the pursuit of that perfect item for our projects.  It was common for me to spend hours perusing magazine, flea markets, garage sales and antique stores looking for inspiration.  While I love my life of travel and living simply, I still have a deep love for finding treasures and being creative.

I guess you could say I’ve been bitten by the repurpose / upcycling bug!

For the past few weeks, I have been gathering items around my house and junking at garage sales.  I have had the best time finding sad pieces of furniture to transform.  The best part of the process is finding that perfect piece and imagining the possibilities.  The actual work can be tedious, but SO rewarding!

Before:

Garage Sale find

After:

Refinished Furniture

My friend and I are setting up at the Springfield Flea Market this weekend, our first attempt at this business and a test to see if we want to pursue other markets and shows.  I am so excited to be a vendor and experience the culture of the Flea Market.  Come out and see us Friday, Saturday or Sunday!  Hopefully we’ll sell out before Sunday.  :) Stayed tuned… I will let you know how it goes.

Regardless, I have thoroughly enjoyed getting in touch with my creativity.

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Lucca, Italy… oh how I love you!

March 23rd, 2011

One of the best days of my life!

Jeff and I spent our last days in Italy in the little country town of Lucca in Tuscany.  As we got off the train and strolled toward our hotel, I looked at Jeff and proclaimed, “Lucca is our kind of town!”  He didn’t know how I could tell that from the train station.  It just felt right.

Don’t get me wrong… I loved everywhere we went.  We loved the art in Florence, the medieval town of Siena, the grand monuments and fountains in Rome, and ocean views of Naples and Capri.  I would be hard pressed to pick one favorite place, restaurant, experience or sight.

187116_1118870860_1567811_n1Lucca is famous for the medieval wall that surrounds the historic center.  Life seems to take place outdoors in this beautiful little town with people walking, running and riding their bikes.  This lovely town seemed to be family oriented with young families in parks spending time with their children and socializing.  It was sweet to see how people interacted with their children.  I was even welcomed by returned smiles as I passed people around town.  Most people rode a bicycles equipped to carry groceries and a passenger.  I was impressed with many of the women’s ability to maneuver their bicycles with passengers and groceries while looking incredible and very well dressed.

Jeff wisely recommended that we use our day in that area to explore Lucca instead of trying to see Pisa as well.  We were both in need of a casual day without trying to figure out a bus schedule and another map.  I am so thankful we did just that!  It ended up being one of my happiest days, a treasure I’ll keep forever.

196154_1846501518478_1118870860_32214839_1180887_n1We got up early on a Sunday rented bycles from our Guest House on a sunny but cool Sunday.  Perfect day to explore Lucca!  Spring was in the air as we rode down a beautiful cobble stone street lined with Japanese Magnolias in bloom.  A bike ride on top of the city the wall with great views of both sides of the city gave us a better idea of the lay of the land and another glimpse of Lucca’s lifestyle.  There were old men playing some kind of competitive checkers game making very animated hand gestures and plenty of locals walking, running or riding their bikes.  We were surprised by the number of people we saw at the hour of the morning.  Life in every other Italian town doesn’t get moving until after noon.

199962_1846510398700_1118870860_32214870_5199408_nJeff and I anticipated a quite day of riding down all the streets and soaking in all the sun and architecture, not thinking much would be open on a Sunday.  We were pleasantly surprised!  That Sunday the historic center of Lucca was lined with a Flea Market.  I couldn’t believe that I could be that lucky and found a couple of treasures to purchase.  The squares were packed with people strolling through the market negotiating pricing in Italian.  A marching band came through one of the squares, making the atmosphere even more festive.  We had our picnic lunch in the square and watched the amusing children chase pigeons.  After a Gelato, we headed back to the Guest House to participate in the afternoon siesta and rested before another ride around the wall to soak in this picturesque town before sunset.

We learned early on in our trip that dinner doesn’t happen until around 7pm in Italy, so we took a walk before dinner.  Surprised by the number of families and friends out walking, we made our way through the crowded cobble stone streets to window shop in the mixture of Mom & Pop shops and Benetton department stores.  We decided on a restaurant that had a group of young people hanging out front of it earlier, thinking it was probably good if the locals like it.  Jeff ordered pizza with Wurstel thinking it was some kind sausage, but was served a hotdog pizza.  We had a good laugh over that one!  To end a perfect day, we took another long walk and said good night to Lucca!  It is really sad to have to say good bye especially with reality looming around the corner.

I wish I could adequately put in words just how much I loved my day in Lucca!  I am blessed with some incredible memories, along with pictures and a couple treasures to remind me of that day.

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