Post II of the Canton Trilogy
Canton Trade Days is held the Thursday-Sunday before the first Monday of the month. Such calculations in the summer just to figure out when to go to a flea market! Don't stress your brain - just check the calendar. You would hate to drive 4 (or in my case, 8) hours to go to a show that is actually happening the following weekend. But if you are anywhere near Canton right now, the show is in progress and running through tomorrow. The temperature is even less than 100 degrees! I am sure you can find lots of sweaty shoppers and a deal or two.
Though the show starts on Thursday, I visited on Wednesday morning. I heard that many vendors are there and set up ready for business much earlier than the official start - especially in the back behind the Pavilion and Arbors barns. I had heard about the junky dealers in the back, but I have to admit I was a little confused on where they actually were. I heard to turn just past Laurie Anna's and the air-conditioned building, and then drive way to the back. Well that little bumpy blacktop road ends up circling back to I-20. Fail. But I persevered and finally found where I needed to be (turn into the Pavilion area and then follow the tiny paved road to the back). This is how I knew I was there:
Wow. This junk pile is so good that I need to show you another angle:
I slather on my sunscreen, lace up my tennis shoes, and count my cash. I packed a tank top to wear, but was glad that my good ol' Lady Cougars gym bag had a t-shirt still in it from track season. The less sun on my back, the better. Let me tell you how hot this Cougar looked sweating it (a lot) in a rumpled old shirt! It didn't matter though - I had my game face on and was ready to shop.
I step into the first barn and was ecstatic about all the rusty steel! And then I asked how much - they were wanting more than twice as much as I have seen wash tub stands selling for at little shops. Moving on...
Well, there wasn't a whole lot to move on to in this barn. I could rent a scooter (end of the barn)...but I had my Cougar shoes on and was ready to prowl.
And finally, my first purchase of the day - a pair of awesome golden velvety chairs. I love them, but am not sure I have a place for them. They may be going with me to the Rusted Gingham Barn Sale in November!
I was so close to losing these chairs. I sat in them, admired them, haggled on them, and then walked away. I texted my mom a picture asking for her opinion, and before she even wrote back, I decided I just had to have them. I hadn't even walked 30 seconds away from the chairs, and another lady (one of the only other shoppers on the grounds with me Wednesday) was already admiring them and trying one out. I didn't want to be rude, so I didn't say anything to the seller while she was sitting in them, but the minute she got up, I told him I wanted them. He looks at her, and she very generously said to go ahead, you were looking at them first. Whew! They aren't kidding when they say don't walk away as it might not be there when you return!
I was so appreciative that she let me buy them. Guess I didn't really have my game face on afterall - but lesson learned.
I had pretty much exhausted the back barns and was curious if anyone if the big buildings up front was open.
Most all booths were either early in their move-in phase or had just dropped their stuff off to set up later. You know, when it got good and hot, up to the predicted 108.
Somebody found a school district getting rid of old desks and AV carts. Though those 'old desks' are what my students' desks look like in my relatively new school. We could stand to replace a few of ours...
Beyond the junk and schoolhouse furniture/equipment, there are gobs of other items to peruse: purses, jewelry, apparel, flip flops, sunglasses, more jewelry and clothes, reproduction furniture and accessories, super nice (read: expensive) antiques, crosses, paintings, framed art, personalized merchandise...more like a bizarre in my book rather than flea market. I just wasn't really interested in any of it at the time (which was good because hardly any of the booths in the Arbors or Pavilion were open)- I drove 215 miles for junk, and there just wasn't that much I liked at a price I was willing to pay. It also seemed to me that the prices were pretty high; maybe I hyped Canton up so much that my expectations were unrealistic? Other factors that probably contributed to my disappointment include how early I went, how hot it was, and the simple fact that it is August. Maybe a lot of vendors skip out on this one? I would love to hear about others' experiences and perhaps you can convince me to give First Monday Trade Days another try in the hopefully much cooler future.
Nonetheless, I am so glad I went. I had a good time exploring on the way there and on the way home, I still found lots of goodies at my fun stops, and I came home with the golden thrones.
And now for a few pictures of Barn Chic Antiques:
This great dresser is from somewhere between Corsicana and Athens...
Would love to know from those of you who have been if my experience was typical for Canton or not...
As always, thanks for reading.
Have a chic week!