If you haven’t figured it out yet, I am a huge lover of all things antique and vintage! I’ve done posts on flea markets before, but I’ve never shared an experience at Chicago’s Randolph Street Market! I’m obsessed with this market mainly for the vintage fashion and accessories. Incorporating vintage jewelry, a bag, or a hat into your wardrobe, gives it a certain uniqueness, that you just can’t get from a department store. How about the history behind these pieces as well, I think that’s my favorite part! Who wore this before me, when, and where, so fun! Most of all, I love that these items are one of a kind. If they were mass-produced at one time, they certainly aren’t now, and that makes them even more special.
How To Shop A Vintage Market
- Make a list of items that you’re looking for. It saves both time and money!
- Do a quick run through of the market to see all the vendors before you start purchasing.
- Take quick pics of things that your interested in as your walking through.
- Know your stuff, so you know if you’re overpaying. If you’re looking for a vintage coat, look online at vintage coats before you go and see what sellers are charging. Then when you get to the market, you’ll know if the price is right.
- I don’t look for designer jewelry at flea markets, but I do want good quality. Check out the fine details, the weight of the piece, is it damaged, missing stones or discoloring.
- When purchasing a handbag, always check the inside of the bag to make sure the bag isn’t dirty or smelly, and that lining is in decent condition.
- When purchasing clothing, try it on! There are no returns at the market!
- If you purchase any type of apparel, always have it dry cleaned before wearing, obviously.
- Stay away from anything that smells musty, old, or like mothballs!! You will never get the smell out, I don’t care how many times you dry clean it. It happened to me with a vintage Etsy purchase before, total bummer!!
- Bargain away!! Don’t be afraid to ask the seller if this is the best they can do. Most of the time they will lower the price, especially on the last day of the market!
- If you absolutely fall in love with something, buy it. There is a good chance it won’t be there when you return.
My 2 Fabulous Finds
Grey Flannel Box Bag
Check out this grey flannel 1950’s box bag. Super cute, totally on trend, and in mint condition. I just couldn’t pass this unique beauty up! I definitely plan on making a statement with this bag!
Vintage Panther Brooch
I don’t know what it is, but lately I’ve had this thing for vintage brooches. Brooches were actually at the top of my list of things to look for at this market, so when I saw this handsome panther brooch, I knew I had to have it! Paid $20 bucks for him, but he was so worth it!
Unfortunately, I only walked away with two pieces, but my friend Diane and I were kind of in a hurry to get to Bar Siena for dinner (haha). It’s all good though, because I found two fabulous pieces that I am just smitten with!
Take a peek at what the rest of the market had to offer. These pics show just SOME of the fantastic items available at this market:)
Vintage Hats and Scarves
Bags, art, and knick knacks
Very fun vintage dresses, so fun to look through these racks.
Coats, coats, and more coats! I am a huge fan of vintage furs!
Tons of vintage jewelry
Isn’t this little train case precious??
I fell in love with this leopard bar stool!
Love this love sign!
Fantastic vintage trunks that would make excellent end tables.
Some more funky stuff!
Some cool art made from old window frames.
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