Who can resist a good flea market treasure hunt? Rummaging through boxes of collections, knowing that at the bottom of this battered cardboard box, splitting at the seams, could be that vintage poster you have to have for your bathroom. Trying on rows of sunglasses- I’ll take this one, and this one and oh wait these too!
At the Coastal Carolina Flea market, you will be hard pressed not to walk away with a gem. Something you might cherish forever or at least for the day. I come from a long line of dedicated hoarders and I have fought the genetic urge to have a “craft room” or collection of… I have taken the extreme opposite route of my family tradition and try to keep my living spaces clutter free almost sparse with just a hint of charm. So it was with sweaty palms I decided to make my first trip to the Market. It could go either way. I could fall victim to my upbringing and make my boyfriend back up the truck and start loading, or I could stick with the mantra: Do I really need this? What do I need this for? Where will this go?
From the alarming strong smell of the fish tents to the equally overwhelming smell of the perfume guy, chasing you down as you try to dart out of the smog of the sample spray, this place is littered with 1000 available booths and vendors that cover the imagination of possibilities.
We were lured to our first visit by the promise of fresh, cheap produce. I was disappointed to not find an organic vendor, but tried to avoid the dirty dozen as I filled my grocery list. I was going through a juicing faze so we stock piled on beets, mangos, carrots, everything to make mean green juice for a healthy breakfast kick start or my favorite watermelon margaritas for an awesome evening start!
Our second visit we decided to explore the rest of the forty seven acres and double our pleasure by taking the dog with us. Hagan was thrilled with all the smells and sights. We found a vendor that sold raw African Shea butter for a steal, and it makes the perfect lotion for a sensitive skin massage.
The third visit I came upon a photographer that had captured a shot of a tree growing right through an old pick-up truck. There was something perfectly fabulous about it, and I begged my sugar daddy boyfriend to spend his big bucks on two of this artist’s pieces for our bedroom at the whopping price of $30. Now the whole room has been inspired by those two photos and I can’t wait to find a few more things to complete the funky look.
We have found a lunch box to upgrade our brown bags, a cool cat toy and a few old sailing photos for our guest room during our picking. I love that the choices always change, depending on who has decided to set up a table that weekend. Every time I go back I like to think of it as practice to break the cycle. They say it takes a month of doing something to break a habit. I wonder how many times it will take to break three generations of junk collectors?
Yet again this is a great example of “local” so head over to Ladson on a weekend and find your must have.
Written by contributing writer Tatiana Fisher.