Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Review: The Rose Bowl Flea Market

This flea market, in Pasadena, CA, is billed as "the world's largest flea market" and boy, they aren't kidding.
This thing is enormous! Like, there's-no-possible-way-to-see-it-all enormous.

Two Sundays ago was the first time I'd been in 20 years...which is weird because I live relatively close by...
It won't be that long until my next visit! I had a great time and found a pretty decent pile of booty, despite hardly even trying to score deals.

Here are some great things I saw (and passed up):

travel theme needlepoint bag...way expensive!

souvenir pillowslips...including a "Lindberg" one! Very rare.

Drool-worthy furniture

this couch is repro, but isn't it fab?

tables to go with the green couch

bowls for the Airstream (I wish)

re-arranged Italian army bag...huge
Here's what I ended up getting:

like I could pass up leopard :-)

This one's to paint tikis or something on...
all silk, from the $1 table
glitter! Lucite!
This last handbag is one of those convertible styles! The cover comes off and reverses to shiny black patent leather. Without the cover, the bag is navy blue grosgrain-type fabric. Three bags in one! This one's going up in my Etsy shop, I think, once I get it cleaned up.

Here are some tips if you decide to visit:

~wear the most comfortable & supportive shoes you own. Seriously. This place is enormous and all on concrete...your dogs will be barking at the end of the day!

~bring a big 'ol pile of cash, with lots of small bills. Remarkably, many of the vendors still only take cash (dur...ever heard of Square? seriously, vendor-people...you're missing sales).

~wear layers....it starts off really cold in the morning, because it's sort of down in a canyon. Once the sun is shining it starts heating up pretty fast. When I first got there at about 8 am I was cozy in jeans, jacket, hoodie, t-shirt, hat, gloves and light scarf. By noon I was down to the jeans and t-shirt!

~those rolly cart things are awesome, but if you don't have one of those, at least bring a big, lightweight tote bag or something to haul your booty in.

~you might consider bringing drinks, water, snacks...they really gouge you for the drinks, and if you're vegan, like me, there are no food options. Next time I go I honestly think I'll bring a whole lunch for myself.

~pace yourself, take breaks, and strategize....focus on what you're really looking for. It's really easy to get overwhelmed and start walking around in a daze like a zombie. Don't become a Rose Bowl zombie!

Last, but not least, here's a link the the Rose Bowl Website


  1. Hello

    I was just browsing your blog after looking at Mistermodtomics blog and suddenly you have a picture of me @my booth at the Rosebowl. I'm the one with the drool worthy furniture! That's me or at least my back torso! Thanks for the post. I'll be @ this January's Rosebowl in the same space #8132 with more drool worthy Danish and American Midcentury goodness.

    Danny Torres

  2. Hey Danny!
    That's too funny...nice to "meet" you, and thanks for checking out my blog :-)
    You were so busy that day at the Rose Bowl, and I didn't want to take you away from potential customers!

  3. Dina

    Thanks, That was a super busy day. Thanks! If you ever need any info about any mid century pieces or restoration advice feel free to contact me.

    Just finished up January's Rosebowl. That was a good one too!

    Danny Torres