Living Space

Living space: Find fall accents at flea markets, antique shows

Tribune Content AgencySeptember 6, 2013 

Flea markets always have lots of kitchen kitsch.


When temperatures begin to drop, it’s a sure sign that fall is around the corner. Those first crisp mornings may put you in an autumn nest-building mood. Giving your decor a fall flavor couldn’t be easier than browsing the stalls at local flea markets, antique sales and craft fairs.

With a bit of effort, you’re sure to find that one-of-a-kind item not available in a retail store. The thrill of the hunt and haggling over your great finds just add to the fun. An antique sale or craft fair is sure to yield something you won’t see at your neighbor’s house.

Stand out items

Look for items that can repurposed or used as artwork. Even old sweaters can be bought for a dollar or two and transformed into uber-trendy throw pillows. Like antlers, but don’t want to pay an lot for them at a decorating store? Lots of flea markets and antique shows feature antlers, mounted animal heads and hides that can add rustic flair to a dull space. Try an old skin in the bathroom in place of a rug or go high contrast with an animal skin as a table runner in the dining room. Place a flower arrangement on top, add some antlers and you’ve got a great-looking fall display.

Think arts and crafts

Whether old or new, ceramics lend a warm, earthy feel. Look for old jugs, large platters you can use for arrangements of fall flowers or fruit, and small serving pieces to hold trinkets, nuts or pine cones. Be on the lookout for fruit and vegetable crates and wine cases that can be repurposed as firewood boxes, or add wheels to the bottom to create a rustic toy box.

Don’t overlook wall decor. You can pull together 3-D displays using anything from oars to garden implements, old signs, metal farm tools and tractor seats, even vintage items from cars, such as steering wheels, hub caps or hood ornaments.

Watch for kitchen kitsch. Flea markets usually have an abundance of unique and artsy-looking kitchen items that add a colorful fall touch, at a time of year when we do lots of cooking and often have guests. If you’re creative and handy, try turning an old piano stool into a side table, or seek out small furniture pieces you can paint with a bright pop of orange or indigo, two hot colors for fall.

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