Shopping – The Alameda Point Antiques Faire

I have been wanting to check this out forever, everyone’s always talking about their great finds. This past Sunday a couple of girlfriends and I  decided to get out of bed at the crack of dawn and haul a$$ out to the island of Alameda.

To be honest, I thought it would be full of old stinky crap I would have no interest in but I was pleasantly surprised. Don’t get me wrong, there was a lot of weird crap.

Like this.

Dolls

Lots and lots of dolls.

Dolls2 Freaky.

dolls3

I was seriously overwhelmed and didn’t get pictures of as many cool things as I wanted to. I get distracted by all things shiny and mid-century modern. But trust me people, it was well worth.

There were these great old books that would be perfect for styling some shelves.

OldBooksLovely and overpriced French knick knacks.

FrenchKnickKnacks

FrenchThings

American things too. Like an antique flag for $600.

AmericanThings

Boot

My friend picked up this huge star for her new house (her husband is from Texas).

Star

And lots of MCM treasures at pretty great prices. I have no idea about the quality and authenticity but the prices seemed very reasonable. Most pieces were priced from $100-400.

MCM

ChairsSO much stuff I wanted to buy but I limited it to this set of glasses.

Glasses

Excuse me while I go research lead test kits online.

I absolutely think I overpaid though because the seller agreed to my offer in .25 seconds. But I love them so I guess they’re worth it.

The Alameda Antiques Faire is the first Sunday of every month and if you’re looking for vintage textiles (here and here), unique furniture, sterling flatware (some obscure pieces like a baked potato serving fork or an olive server), and servingware/dishes you must go. I have heard from friends though that every time the types of things that you will see are totally different. I only saw a couple of very expensive pieces of jadeite but I’m hoping next time I’ll get luckier. Everything must be 20+ years old but take note that 20 years ago was 1993…

Here are some tips so you will be a little better prepared than I was.

1. Know what you are looking for. We all shared our wish lists in the morning so we could keep an eye out for each other. I decided that I was looking for vintage dollhouse furniture (umm. i only found a mini cast iron stove that had “baby” printed on the oven door, creepy) and a set of glasses in a tray holder thing and due to my friends eagle eyes I got one of my two wish list items.

2. Don’t be too hasty but don’t wait too long. I saw lots of glasses and things that I thought were cute but not exactly what i was looking for. Eventually I found something that was almost perfect. Definitely don’t buy the first thing that catches your eye, but on the other hand if you see something you ABSOLUTELY love, buy it. It may not be there when you go back later.

3. Get there early if you want the REALLY good stuff. The faire starts at 6:30, so if you are looking for something in high demand or want to find a real treasure get there early. Tickets start at $15 but decrease every couple of hours. We got there around 9:30ish which was fine since none of us were really looking to buy a ton of things. We still were able to get some great finds.

4. Be prepared. If you are planning on buying fragile items, I would suggest bringing along some tissue paper or packing supplies to wrap them in. None of the sellers we bought glassware from provided any. Also bring your own bag to carry your items or even better a cart of some sort. They do provide some but those were big, clunky and really hard to push. They were really only helpful for large furniture items and not much help if you were buying smaller items.

5. Bring snacks and water and wear sunscreen. I was so thirsty and by the end of the morning so hungry that we polished off a bag of kettle corn. There are food trucks but if you are just trying to make your way around the booths quickly, bring your own easy to snacks. It was also overcast all day and I didn’t realize how tan I got until I tried to put make-up on the next morning and my foundation was like 3 shades too light. You fair-skinned people definitely run the risk of getting burned.

So friends, there’s my recap. If you’re ever in the bay on the first sunday of the month, I think it’s well worth a couple of hours. Now tell me, what antique/vintage items are currently on your wishlist?

  • Amber @ Wills Casa

    I saw a ton of finds via instagram and was insanely jealous! That green headboard is pretty amazing too. I passed up a set of MCM glasses once and have always regretted it, so I say you made a good call getting them!

    • I was so creeped out by the scary dolls everywhere that everything within 10 feet of them was a blur but you’re right the headboard is pretty sweet. Are the old dolls a decorating trend that I am too uncool to know about yet?

      You should let me know if there’s anything in particular you’re interested in. I’ll keep an eye out for you!