Flea Market Shopping in Charlotte
Tour one of the South’s best shows in Charlotte, North Carolina, for antiques, collectibles, and flea market finds with Eddie Ross.
Southern Living tagged along with flea market fanatic and style extraordinaire Eddie Ross to the International Collectibles & Antiques Show in Charlotte. The show, held the first weekend of every month, covers 98,000 square feet and features more than 1,000 vendors. Lucky for us, Eddie shares his expert tips (and some of his favorite vendors) to make the most of our shopping.
Bring a lightweight tote bag with shoulder straps to hold your purchases along with measurements, fabric swatches, and paint chips to help make sure you’ve found that perfect piece. Returns are not an option at antiques shows or flea markets.
I'm always on the lookout for multipurpose pieces, and porcelain French baskets are a favorite of mine. I can use them in a variety of ways from flower arranging to serving up crudités. Look for them in various shapes and sizes with elegant footed bases and delicate fretwork. Don’t worry if the gilt is wearing off from age—that only adds to the charm!
Don’t be afraid to get to know vendors and ask a lot of questions. They have tons of knowledge to share about their wares. Oftentimes, you can learn an item’s interesting backstory, which will add to its appeal. You can also let them know if you’re on the lookout for a particular piece so they can set it aside for you.
Markets such as the ICA Shows are a great resource for vintage linens. Go ahead and pull them out and unfold them so you can really see the pattern and any wear and tear. Don’t let small stains discourage you from buying. Take them to your local cleaners for spot removal. If all else fails, get creative! That tablecloth could become a table runner.
Look out for Judith Greason in Tent 2 for vintage chenille coverlets at affordable prices.
When it comes to silver, the more you dig, the bigger the treasure that awaits you. Many people stop hunting at the first sign of tarnish. But with some silver polish and elbow grease, even the blackest spoon can get its luster back.
Look out for Robert and Sharon Kurschner at Sterling Treasures in Building A for their collection of silver plate and china starting at $20.