The Flea

My favorite time of year is quickly becoming the weekend of the Old Town Clovis Flea Market.  It's like Christmas for the antique lover in me.  The flea is held twice a year and I think I've only missed it once since moving here.  That first one I came away with a print of a boat (which I love and finally framed two years later).  Then I found a brass firewood holder, some blue pottery and a small piece of art at another one.  Last May's flea was hard to top because I found my beautiful antique hutch that I still stroke lovingly nearly every time I walk by it in my living room (kidding, but I do love that thing a lot).  I wasn't expecting to find anything grand this go around.  I told Aaron that I pulled out some cash but that I had no visions of large pieces of furniture finding their way home with me.  I did stick to that, technically; however, I did make a life changing purchase.

Let me introduce my new china.
I LOVE it.

I had had a list of things to look out for at the flea and china was not even on my radar.  When we walked up to it sitting on a table at the booth though I loved it instantly, which totally surprised me.  I've never found china that I've loved.  I didn't register for it when we got married because I had no clue what I liked.  I always feared that whatever china I picked I would regret ten years down the line when my tastes changed.   But to me, this china is a beautiful and timeless.  I can mix and match it with lots of colors and styles.  It's beautiful on it's own but would also look so pretty paired with other pieces.  And after six years of living all things gold and brass, I can't imagine ever not liking this china.

Despite encouragement from friends and random onlookers alike though, I still had to think about it.  I wasn't expecting to buy china that day so that fact that I was all of a sudden considering it threw me for a loop.  I texted Aaron and called my mom.  I went back three more times to pick it up and turn it over.  I talked with the seller to see if she'd come down on the price (even though I thought it was 100% worth more than they were even asking).  The last time I walked away, the seller ran after me and said, "I'll let you have it for $80! I can tell you love it a lot and I just want it to go to someone who really loves it like I do."  I was so happy and surprised! I brought it home and put it right in our glass cupboard in our kitchen.

Since then I've had dreams of fancy dinner parties with beautiful place settings.  I feel like I've opened pandora's box a little bit because now I keep thinking about pretty silverware and table linens and chargers and candles and flowers, etc. etc.  The honest truth is that I rarely cook a fancy meal.  But I don't want to wait ten years before I use them.  So that Sunday after the flea market, I made honey lemon chicken, quinoa and roasted broccoli and set the table for me and Aaron to eat on our china.

I think what I love most about this find is that it lends to a particular lifestyle.  While my hutch and art and other things are pretty to look at, this china will encourage family togetherness and good meals and dinner parties with friends.  And one day my kids will have it.  It probably sounds a little sappy but it's like all of a sudden I "get it."  Maybe I'm just old now and get excited about old things but I really feel a lot of joy over owning china that I can use and pass down.

Enough about my new china.  There was so much at the flea market to love.  I was tempted by so many things.  Among them, I loved...
^^This big beautiful clock is made on a ranch in Monterey out of the top of a barrel.
 ^^I know I'm not alone in loving Africa mudcloth pillows. There were a couple great ones being sold there by ProjectWildflower and others too (I'm just forgetting now).
 ^^These were big and beautiful and heavy.  They would have been perfect on my table with my new china ;)
 ^^I'm such a sucker for pretty wood chairs like this.  And that's a great price.  I dream of corners like this in my house. 
 ^^I don't think this picture does it justice but Jessica and I thought this would make a fun hanging plant holder. 
 ^^This made my granny, quilt-loving-heart happy.  If I didn't buy the china I would have totally bought this quilt top and finished it.  The quilt top was just $20, which is an incredibly good price for the fabric alone.  I loved the fabric they used so I took close up of squares so I could remember it.  Of course, my mom later pointed out they look a bit like swastikas so maybe it's good i didn't buy it ;)
^^Fun benches.  I think they used to be old headboards.
^^THIS WAS BEAUTIFUL!  My picture does not do it justice.  The glass was old and  the wood was such a pretty color.  I loved the size of it. It felt like a piece of history.
 ^^These books would be so pretty on a bookshelf.  
^^Jessica came across this at the flea and texted it to me and now I'm regretting not finding and buying it.  I want more things for our walls that aren't just artwork. 

So that's a bit of the flea market.  It was HUGE this year.  A lot more booths and SO MANY more people.  At first I was worried all the crowds would take away from the experience but it didn't in the end.  We ate a the food trucks and just had so much fun all around checking out all the local artists and antique furniture. Counting down the days til May!

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