Checked out the Arlington Civitan Yard Sale and Flea Market last Saturday, Sept 5. This event is held the first Saturday of each month, April thru November. BFF Sharona showed up at my house at
When we entered the garage, most of the vendors were completely set up and ready to sell. One of the first ‘booths’ we stopped at was fantastic; the vendor was an enthusiastic lady named Sam, who was offering some wonderful items at excellent prices. Sam’s story is that she had owned an antiques shop in Manassas, Virginia, but the downturn in the economy forced her to shutter her shop, and she subsequently lost her home. Very sad. So, she was selling some of her wares, which ranged from vintage Noritake handle soup bowls and saucers, to Victorian biscuit jars, to lovely French paintings and prints. My nose for the Italianate immediately took me to a PAIR of guilded metal candle sconces, which are an exact match to the chandelier in my dining room! According to Sam, these had previously resided in her own home, flanking the mantle in her living room. However, she mistakenly represented them as 1920’s French; from my own research of such pieces (many of which are in my personal collection – read about that later!), these items are 1960’s Florentine. Nonetheless, I chose not to argue the point, and instead paid the very reasonable price she was asking and cradled my finds back to the car.
Sharona and I scoped out the extensive and varied offerings of the other vendors. This flea market is so much fun! We discovered that almost all levels of the parking garage were filled with vendors, some with amazing vintage pieces. In particular, I saw several fun 1950’s boomerang tables and kitchenware, which I had to hold myself back from becoming too attached to! Also, there was one very affable gentleman with a nice collection of ‘40’s vintage rattan furniture. The wooden structures were in great condition, but unfortunately most pieces were without cushions. However, his partner was selling some lovely vintage fabrics which could have been used to recreate the perfect pre-Castro Cuba look for a solarium or funky living room.
One of the last vendors we happened upon had a fabulous set of eight folding wooden chairs. All were in decent working order, and the patina was so perfect: these chairs had been painted a lovely shade of medium green and had weathered over the years to a natural vintage crackled finish. (I’ve had this fetish for folding wooden chairs since seeing my friend Amy’s collection in her basement, which were on their way to the family’s cottage in Bethany Beach, Delaware. Amy alerted me to a set being sold at our kids’ Catholic school yard sale last spring, which I bought for a steal!) According to the couple selling them, the chairs originally resided in their beach house at Rehoboth for many years, til they ended up stored in the couple’s garage. Acknowledging that I REALLY didn’t need more folding wooden chairs (especially a set of EIGHT), I managed to tear myself away from them, and, after stopping by to bid Sam farewell til next month, Sharona and I departed for a French toast breakfast at our fave Greek diner.
But, in true Furniture Addict form, I could NOT get those damned folding chairs out of my mind!! I obsessed about them the entire time I was at the gym (trying to work off all that French toast and bacon and eggs!); I kept romanticizing the idea of the chairs finding their rightful place back in Rehoboth, albeit at Sig O’s condo there. I finally gave into my impulses, cut my workout short, and haul-assed it back to the Civitan Flea, which was closing in less than an hour. I managed to locate the vendor, and miraculously all eight chairs were still there! I offered him 10% less than his already very reasonable price (just to make myself feel better for giving in to my addiction), and he readily agreed (maybe I should’ve started lower?!? UGH…that’s my downfall…I’m always fearful of insulting a vendor by low-balling them.) In the end, I added a set of eight beautifully patina’d vintage folding deck chairs to my collection. And of course I called Sharona to blame her for not being there to stop me!