Friday, June 28, 2013

Adventures in markets, Act I

The first Sligo Flea Market was a success! I am thrilled with the feedback, and am still on a sort of high after it! That being said, there were a few hiccups on the morning itself. You're dealing with a diverse group of people - sellers of all ages and personalities. Some are trying to sell bric a brac for the day, while for others this is a business.

I managed to spill hot tea on myself the day before so I couldn't go in the evening before and assign tables as planned. This made for a bit of a clumsy start the next day as people arrived earlier than I had advised and already bagged tables. So I scrapped the plan, and flexed my diplomacy muscles, I had some chocolate, wore my brightest smile and made sure everyone was happy. I didn't relax until a couple of hours in. My friend Linda was selling some seriously tempting kitchenalia and homewares, and she was great for support on the day. There were some craft and jewelery stalls, there was a dedicated record area, and lots of rails selling vintage and second hand clothing.

There was a great atmosphere around the venue for the day. There's something about selling vintage and craft goods that seems invites conversation with the sellers and leads to unexpected friendships! Everyone and everything has a story to share.

Social media is a brilliant tool for sharing these stories. I'm lucky that Sligo has a vibrant social media community already, and people are very keen on micro-blogging and spreading the word about Sligo and its secrets!

Over the course of the day I got plenty of excercise, simply by walking about the market, snapping pictures, tweeting, updating facebook and dipping in and out of conversations, as well as looking at all the stalls and resisting temptation. Until the last hour at least! I purchased a beautiful 1960s crepe dress, from a woman who had bought it in Rome when she was my age. You just don't get the same history from a piece of high street mass produced clothing. I also purchased a pair of 1950s gloves, a 1970s belt and the beautiful beaded evening bag below, which I reckon must be 1950s.

Five years ago, I had just finished secondary school. I was so shy, I would never have had the courage to do something like this. I've developed some great friendships and interests over the past five years. I've meet some wonderful (and some woeful) people, and all these experiences have changed me. In the past three years especially, I've been learning that if I want something, I should do something about it, and try not to be so afraid of failure. This market brings something a little different to Sligo, it unites a diverse amount of people together in one community for a day, and for me to engage with such interesting people, is an absolute pleasure. Events like this are something I would certainly love to be involved with in the future, so I'm grateful for the opportunity to be able to run something like this for the first time, and receive such a positive response in return.

All the photographs of the day were kindly taken by Anna Leask, and the instagram pictures are my own.