A couple of weeks ago, I visited Hot Springs, AR, for a work-related conference. While there, I was thrilled to locate tons, and I mean tons, of awesome flea markets. Unfortunately, I only had time to check out a couple of them before I headed home.
But, when I got home and shared my finds with my Dad, he surprisingly wanted to take a Saturday and go back to Hot Springs to check them out for himself – so that's what we did.
Last Saturday, Dad and I made the three hour drive down to Central Arkansas with the sole intention of scouting out flea markets – and boy did we ever find some. Below are just a few of the many photos I took during my intial trip and the trip back with my Dad.
The first stop on both trips was the Central Station Market Place – one of the largest, and oddest, flea markets I've visited. Half of the building is independently owned and opporated “mini” flea markets, each inside their own gated and locked “room.” The other half of the buiding is a traditional flea market with numerous venders selling through a central opperator.
The one thing all flea markets have in common: over stuffed booths. This photo makes me smile, though, and begs me to play a game of I spy.
I spy a waving rabbit, a star on a frame; a pretty pink poodle and a doll with a name.
And this might be my favorite sign a the market – out for eats, who can argue with that?
The pig in the upper right corner is truly awesome in person – and I totally wish I could justify getting it because I am in love with it! It's clearly very old, and very well made, with only a couple of small holes on the seams – nothing too difficult to repair. But I just couldn't come up with a good enough reason for why I needed a two foot long and one foot tall stuffed patchwork pig. Sad day.
The second Flea Market I checked out while was this little gem, Moonlight Antiques & Gifts. I knew I had to stop when I spotted its door and painted mural on the side of the building.
It was a smaller shop, with two levels (although there wasn't much upstairs). However, what it lacked in size it more than made up for in character.
There was a whole wall and section of the celing dedicated to vintage hats – plus, this is where I found my awesome cat-butt cactus planter
(which is clearly the most cleaver planter and best find ever).
You know, I'm not even sure what the name of this flea market is. We stopped here it because it looked like a good 'pickin' place – somewhere we could find great treasures at reasonable prices. It delivered on the treasures, but not so much on the prices (or at least the prices for Dad's stuff – I, on the other hand, found tons of vintage sheets for $2-$5 each – perfect for backing quilts)
The down side to this one was their use of space. Every free inch was filled with something – making viewing it all nearly impossible and navigating most of it extreamly difficult.
The last place we stopped was, by far, my favorite location. Once an elementary school, the Rural Dale School Marketplace is now an interesting and well stocked flea market. It just facinated me that they turned a school building into a flea market – but it makes perfect sense. Each “classroom” became a booth, with larger booths set up in the old gym and cafeteria.
In the top left photo, you are looking at the stage area of the cafeteria, complete with drop down screen. The bottom right shows the basketball goals still in place in the gym. I mean, what an awsome idea for rehabbing an old building! Plus, they host a farmers market out front.
Dad was impressed with the school's “music” room – which was filled with tons of vintange mantle and standing radios and more records than you could imagine. A tinker-er's paradise!
I'm sure I'll be sharing more finds from this trip soon, but I don't want to overload you with awesomeness tonight 😉
So until next time, do you have any good flea markets in your area?