Antique and Flea Market Shopping in May

Flea Market Shopping in May

May is a beautiful month for an antique excursion or flea market shopping. Non-shoppers…Before you click and run, consider this remarkable tidbit. Fleas are not sold at these markets. So where in the world did the name come from? Why would anyone want to shop somewhere that creates visions of hopping little bugs that bite and cause hind-leg scratching in both humans and their furry little pals?

Flea Market Shopping

Flea market comes from the French marché aux puces, a name originally given to a market in Paris which specialized in shabby second-hand goods of the kind that might contain fleas. ~ Oxford Dictionary

Now I don’t know about you, but somehow I think a French flea is likely more attractive than one found in one of our southern states. I’m imagining the tiniest scarf and red lipstick. Isn’t it ironic? We shop markets named after France and then we re-style our purchase. It is transformed into something beautiful. It looks as if it came straight from Paris. And of course then we label it shabby-chic. And they say you can’t put lipstick on a flea!

red lipstick

I digress. Rummaging through the internet, I found several options for the month of May. As an incentive to shop local, my blog is dedicated to markets, vintage pickin’s and trade days in southern states. If you are a vendor in any of the following states, be sure to check back often for events, tips, how-to’s and dealer success stories.








North Carolina


South Carolina



Black Out These Calendar Dates in May

For the month of May 2019, I suggest you black out these dates for your shopping trip(s).

Scott Market Atlanta GA

  • May 9-12 for the Scott Antique Market at the Atlanta Expo Center in Atlanta, Georgia. If you’ve not made plans with Mom yet, you can still salvage the weekend! This trip would make a great Mother’s Day gift.

Show Hours
Thursday 10:45am – 6:00pm
Friday 9:00am – 6:00pm
Saturday: 9:00am – 6:00pm
Sunday: 10:00am – 4:00pm


Free Parking

$5.00 Admission Per Person

Dipsy Doodle Schedule

  • May 16 1:00 pm – 3:00 pm register for a fun class at Dipsey Doodle Tools Rule Workshop. This workshop teaches the basics of how to use different tools in your antique business. Upcycling without tool know-how, leaves you empty-handed. Your doodads are not safe on a fragile whatnot.

27 Panter Drive
Dahlonega, GA 30533

706-867-4908 for reservations

  • On May 17-19 visit the Lakewood 400 Antique Market in Cumming, GA. If this isn’t already on your bucket-list of business and/or fun destinations, then be sure to add it. It is one of the top 10 antique markets in America! If you can’t make it in May, don’t worry. You can experience this historic market on the third weekend of every month except December. In December, the show is held on the first weekend and is filled with gifts, decorations and all things Christmas. Santa loves a list of tchotchkes.

Tickets are $3 for the weekend and children under 12 are free.

1321 Atlanta Highway

Cumming, GA 30040


  • This next market is outside the footprint of our region, but because it is super-de-duper and in the month of May, I had to mention it! From May 14-19th head north to the magical wonders of Brimfield, MA for the Brimfield Flea Market and Antique Show.

35 Palmer Road, Brimfield MA 01010

(413) 245-9271

Strategic Plan

Don’t leave home without a strategic plan.

  • Book hotels ahead of time in neighborhoods where dumpster diving may yield a good return on your investment.
  • Consider the season and make a list of items your customers need. If it’s freshmen college season, then add a good chest of drawers and a chalkboard. Use your gifted lettering skills to write “Call Your Mom!” on the chalkboard.
  • Keep your niche in mind at all times. If your niche is textiles, avoid mystery tours of vintage car parts.
  • Be sure to have a loading and transporting plan. Most markets have porters to help you load items into  vehicles larger than your iPad mini.

Objective & Task Shopping

  • Begin with the end in mind. Create a budget and don’t be afraid to negotiate. Always give reasonable offers so you don’t insult the vendor. He/she may be flea farmers.
  • Commit to your purchases. Inspect it from top to bottom and inside/out. If it needs TLC, be committed to do all that will bring it back to its glory and beyond. As the owner of Southern Antiques & Accents, Memorie Martinez says:

“Commit to your furniture when you buy it. Clean it properly, prepare it for painting and paint the whole piece. Customers don’t want unfinished pieces.”

Southern Antiques & Accents

Summer Season Antique and Flea Market Shopping

While shopping in May, keep the summer season in mind. Look for items within your niche that your customers will be looking for this summer. Here are a few ideas

  • Picnic baskets
  • Fourth of July decor
  • Outdoor furniture
  • Camping lanterns/gear
  • Cast-iron cookware
  • Gardening tools
  • Garden accents and statues
  • Planters
  • Books
  • Ice cream bowls and scoops
  • Vintage tablecloths and napkins
  • Glass pitchers for lemonade
  • Deviled egg plates
  • Cameras
  • Desks
  • Desk chairs
  • Chest of drawers
  • Bedside tables

Antique and flea market shopping is a great way for vendors to do a little sightseeing. Business trips are tax write-offs, so spend a little time seeing the sites around the market. These little excursions can keep the honeymoon stage of your small business alive and well. Sharing stories of where your pieces come from and what they were used for initially add another layer to the love of antiquing.

Finally, one word of caution: if you find a great deal on a bed, but it comes with little bugs, run Forest, run! Those little bullies are neither shabby nor chic!

How to Buy Vintage Pieces without Holding Your Nose

What is that smell?!? I love shopping thrift stores, estate sales and yard sales for vintage pieces. I’ll pick out the cutest little chest of drawers, load it into my car and then hang my head out the window like a dog on the way home.  Pant…pant…pant. If hanging my tongue out would help, I’d do that, too. Sometimes it’s age, mildew or mold. It might even be a well-meaning, sweet little lady whose stored the piece in moth balls. Phew!!! So how do you purchase vintage pieces without holding your nose?

Vintage sewing machine

10 Ways to Remove Musty Smells from Vintage Pieces

First things first. Do not leave home without a box of dryer sheets. Whether shopping for clothing, furniture or household items, dryer sheets are your very best friend.

  1. Stock dryer sheets in your car. Even if you have to apply elbow grease later, these trusty little friends will help you make it home without holding your nose. Place individual sheets in drawers, baskets, and layered between linens or clothing. Bounce Dryer Sheets
  2. Place ventilated baking soda boxes in furniture, or place the soda in open bowls. Worst case, sprinkle the powder in each drawer to be swept out later.
  3. Wash the pieces with a 2/1 mixture of water and vinegar.
  4. Sprinkle high-end potpourri throughout and close up for several days. My sister recently stored furniture, including a mattress in a climate controlled storage unit. When she retrieved the mattress, it stank to high heaven! A renter beside her had filled her unit with moth balls and it had permeated everything my sister owned! After trying everything from baking soda, to carpet freshener to washing the mattress with vinegar, the thing that finally removed the smell was potpourri. She sprinkled the mattress with several bags of potpourri and zipped it up in a mattress-cover.  Potpourri to remove smell from vintage piecesThey left windows open, fans blowing and the bedroom door closed so it wouldn’t spread to other rooms. After about a week, she opened the cover and all she could smell was potpourri. She left it a few extra days and then removed/vacuumed the potpourri. Now her guests comment on how great her sheets smell!
  5. Sand the interior and/or exterior of the piece and re-wash with vinegar and water.
  6. Sand the interior and wash with Clorox and water. DO NOT use Clorox on exterior of the piece, unless you suspect mold. Then the whole piece will need refinishing. Belt Sander
  7. Repaint the interior drawers or shelves.
  8. Re-stain the vintage pieces after sanding.
  9. Paint the entire piece with a mildew resistant product.
  10. If the smell is fairly mild, spray with lemon-scented Lysol and then place scented contact paper in drawers or on shelves.
  11. Bonus! Set it outside in fresh air and sunshine on a low-humidity day. Remove drawers or shelves and allow your vintage pieces to air out separately.

vintage chair

And of course you can leave the house with one more trick up your sleeve. Be sure to wear your natural stone bracelets with essential oils. When the trip home seems unbearable, inhale your fragrance of choice from your own wrist.

Stone Bead Bracelets

Happy trails! And may your path lead you straight to Daphne Antique Galleria; where you won’t have to hold your nose! We’ve done all the work for you.


Partying with these lovely folks:

Make it Pretty Monday

Flea Market Babies

Flea Market Babies

It was suppose to be a Sunday afternoon drive for a mother and her daughter. But, one stop into a dusty, make-shift flea market changed everything. She held her daughter’s hand, not wanting to get separated as they walked up and down the aisles of the weekend market.  She picked up a dinner plate and turned it over to recall the pattern name. Merry Mushroom. It made her smile to think about the number of meals she had eaten on these dishes and not realized that the mushrooms were so merry.

They wandered down the next aisle and watched as a young woman picked up a plastic baby bottle with an old-fashioned brown nipple and white ring. “You don’t see these things anymore,” she said to her friend. Her daughter looked up at her mother and asked, “Did you feed me bottles like that?”

She could almost smell baby powder in the air. And then she saw him. Sitting in his stroller was a rosy-cheeked, blue-eyed baby boy with a haircut that reminded her of Andrew. Her daughter ran to pick him up as she exclaimed, “Oh Mother, isn’t he cute? And don’t you think he looks a lot like Andrew?” Her mother nodded and answered that Andrew’s cheeks were rosier.

As the market owners began to put away their wares and close up for another week, the two made their way to the car.  Seat belts were buckled and the next stop was an ice cream parlor about 5 miles up the road. It had been a great day, but she just couldn’t bring herself to put the car in drive. She gave quick instructions to her little passenger that she was not to move and jumped out of the car.

As she came out of the flea market this time, the squeals from the passenger seat could be heard at the ice cream parlor. She opened the door and placed the baby boy in her lap. There were tears. She knew she had changed a life, changed an attitude and given new meaning to the term “playtime.”

After a sundae and chocolate shake at their favorite ice cream shop, she drove up the hill and found their usual parking spot. She hopped out and pulled the walker from the trunk. They made their way inside and everyone began to ask about the baby. Beaming from ear to ear, she joyfully told them all, “my daughter bought him for me at the flea market.”





Flea Market Baby


Disclaimer: I have taken a little license with the telling of this story, but the moral is this… If you are looking for gift ideas for elderly living in nursing facilities, consider a doll or a teddy bear. You will be giving them something to cuddle, something to snuggle and a reason to huddle in the hallway.


Teddy Bears and Baby Dolls



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