Aah..flea markets..they always make my vintage heart beat a little bit faster. I’m always looking for little or big vintage treasures (I still hope to run into an affordable Kelly bag one day). I’m already a veteran at the vintage market in the IJ-hallen in Amsterdam but the market that was still on my ‘must visit’ list was the Rose Bowl flea market in Pasadena, California. Everything is bigger in America so with 2500 stands around the Rose bowl stadium I was in for a treat! Read all about how (and if) I survived this famous 45 year old flea market. ¡Vamos!
Got the ticket! Admission fees:
-from 9am, 8$
-between 8am and 9am, 10$
-early birds between 7am and 8am pay 15$
I still want one of those bull skulls for my Trend Attendant home/office. And how about those cool California and Hollywood signs? Too bad they didn’t fit in my suitcase. What’s also cool and very bohemian, one of those kelim rugs on a white wooden floor! Sigh..
Not beating around the bush here, I am a serious serial shopper. You can drop me off at a mall at 9 am and I’ll eventually walk out around 9 pm without any problem. But this flea market is so huge that I got a little overwhelmed, I just didn’t know where to start. And I did have a mission, I spotted some stands/sellers on Instagram #rosebowlfleamarket that I really wanted to visit. But I didn’t have a stand number so it was like looking for a needle in a haystack. So if you’re planning to visit this market and you want to visit a certain stand, ask the seller (for instance via social media) for their stand number. With this number they can easily be tracked at the information stand near the entrance.
Designer vintage: a Balenciaga bag for 60$, Chanel ballerinas flats for 20$, Burberry trenchcoat for 50$, I ran into all of these goodies but they weren’t the right color or size but still, enough designer goods for a friendly price.
No organic food here but okay.. The soft shell chicken tacos and watermelon lemonade were delish! (paid 15$ for both) And as for the rest you’ll find nothing but burgers, fries and hotdogs and cinnamon rolls here. Don’t worry, you’ll walk it off anyway.
There are not just vintage goodies at the Rose bowl flea market but you’ll also find retailers selling new products like clothing or interior decoration.
‘Oh Mickey you’re so fine..!’
Shopping with this view..lovely palmtrees. Oh and don’t freak out when you think you hear a train approaching when you’re walking around here. It’s just John ‘Bombaneer’ riding around on his little motorized cart turned steam locomotive! And he’ll be happy to tell you all about his little trip to Mount Rushmore. Bless him.
It’s a good thing that the stadium wasn’t filled with stands otherwise I would’ve gone mad!
Tips for surviving the Rose Bowl Flea market
-just like with all the other flea markets, make sure you arrive early. When I finally arrived at 10 o’ clock (thanks for bailing out on me, navigator) there were already people leaving with their new old stuff. And this market is so HUGE that you really need all the time you can get.
– Cali is hot-hot-hot! At the end of the day I had burned arms and a painful red neck. So use sunblock and take an umbrella with you, you’ll thank me later..
-bring lots of water! Or buy a small bottle of water at the market for 5 freaking dollars!!
-don’t only take a big bag with you but anything with wheels. Because you’ll be walking lots of miles with all your goodies.
-like I said earlier, if you’ve spotted something you liked on a website or via social media find out what the sellers stand number is. ¡Muy importante!
-parking is free around the stadium.
-make a plan! Start on the utmost outer part, the white area. Then the orange part and if you are still up for it you can do your last shopping round around the stadium.
-the Rose Bowl flea market is every second Sunday of the month, enjoy!
You do understand that I have to go back to do this all over again! So, till soon LaLaland!