It's been a while but I finally visited my mecca, the Rose Bowl Flea Market, last weekend. I've been going since I was a teenager and I still feel anxious and excited every time I approach the entrance. The bright colors, the old timey music, the two dollar bills you get in change when you pay with a ten - it's and experience even before you go through gates. I love the London and European markets for their authenticity but this one really takes the cake in terms of offerings for me. Unlike other markets that focus primarily on small bric-a-brac, the Rose Bowl flea features parking lots full of furniture, clothes, and everything in between. Since I'm only visiting, I went without an agenda and was open to finding treasures that could be put into our storage if need be. It sounds silly to buy something for later but I'm still dreaming about a chandelier that I passed on before moving to London and I vowed to not do that again. I ended up only buying one small pot for our succulents in KL but I did find myself drawn to chairs and metal patio furniture. Wouldn't those yellow ones look great in my future Palm Springs lounge? And the stools for the poolside bar? It was so hot that morning that a swim and a cold drink were really the only things on my mind. Because of that not much shopping got done but I did relish the chance to be in my mecca once again. Do you have a favorite flea market where you live or one that you've traveled to?
I was driving through my old neighborhood when a very chic storefront caught my eye. House of Honey opened in May and from the looks of it, it's really adding some sass to good ol' South Pas.
As soon as I walked inside I was sold. Every piece in there is unique whether vintage or custom made. The china was spectacular, as were the paintings that lined the walls, but most interesting were a pair of old chairs that were re-upholstered using vintage fur coats. So brilliant.
It was nice to meet you, House of Honey. Welcome to the neighborhood.
As I sit on my IKEA chair I'm reminded of an exhibit I visited in NYC last weekend, The Future at Home: American Furniture, 1940-1955, at the Museum of the City of New York. I expected to see some great mid-century modern pieces, and that I did, but I didnt expect to learn exactly how modern this stuff really was.
We talk about pre-fab designs today as if they are something revolutionary and about how modern and affordable IKEA is. Yet the featured designers were creating furniture that really was forward and fresh thinking. Furniture and fashion designs do not follow the same credit today: styles are hardly ever new and original, rather they are recycled silhouettes, textures, and color pallets based on what was once new and original.
Now, I'm okay with that since there were some beautiful things that came out of the twentieth century. What shocked me was that the high-priced and coveted mid-century furniture we find today, were originally designed and produced with an IKEA type philosophy: simple, flexible, cost-effective, and good design for all.
The photo below is of a TIMES article on a DIY living room set that I would love to find today.
I wonder if 60 years from now my plastic Oleby chair will sell for $2,000 at a vintage store....
One week after visiting REVIVAL, a humble yet amazingly stocked vintage shop in Lincoln Heights, I am still dreaming of owning this piece....
It was priced at $300 (practically free!) and was in pristine condition. If only I had space for it!
If you're into vintage furniture and accessories, make the pilgrimage. While there, stop by the HUGE St. Vincent Thrift Store across the street but expect the typical rummaging required to find the diamonds in the rough.