If you’ve been following me on Instagram you know I was at the Round Top Antiques Market last week. And boy was it a blast.
I know you’re dying to see what I purchased but that will have to wait until tomorrow. I’ll show you what I bought along with more highlights from my trip.
Today I want to share some tips I have for shopping the mega Round Top market in case you ever want to attend.
If you’re never been to the Round Top before let me give you a few market stats…
- The Round Top Antiques Market has been going on for 20+ years.
- The show originally started in a single barn facility and now spans miles and miles over several towns.
- The population of Round Top is just 99 but during the market season the number of people in town swells in to the 1000’s.
- There are over 350 dealers at Round Top (actually, it feels like more than that).
- Dealers comes from all across the US and the world. And some dealers even bring containers full of European goods to sell.
- Several venues charge a fee to get in (usually $10 or less) but the majority of shopping sites are free. Parking is free in most cases as well.
- The market is set up to accommodate cars, vans, trailers and even small trucks and buses.
- Shipping services are available if you happen to find a furniture piece that won’t fit in the back of your car 🙂
- Lots of the items are Round Top are EXPENSIVE but don’t let that scare you off because there are tons of affordable items too. There really is something for everyone.
SHOPPING ROUND TOP ANITQUES MARKET
#1. Plan To Spend Multiple Days Shopping. There are two major Round Top Antiques Market shows each year, one in spring and one in the fall. Each show last 5 days with many of the vendors actually setting up shop and selling a week or two before the official opening date.
The show spans over several miles with venues set up all along the main route and off the side roads.
Because the number of dealers is so large, the range of items that you’ll find for sale is beyond the imagination. There is literally something for everyone and items are every price-point.
In order to see all that Round Top has to offer, you need to plan for 2 to 3 days of shopping. Map out the areas you want to visit ahead of time based on the kinds of items you’re shopping for.
#2. Know What You’re Looking For. Everyone that attends Round Top has their own shopping list in mind. While many people are looking for large furniture pieces others like me are looking for smaller collectibles.
To keep me focused on what I’m shopping for, I’ve found it helpful to make a visual shopping list with photos.
When you make your shopping list, take time to study the types of items you’re looking for. If you’re a real collector, you want to know the real thing from a reproduction. And even though many of the dealers are selling authentic vintage and antique items you will run across reproductions, found objects and even a few ‘garage sale’ type finds.
#3. Wheel and Deal. If you’re not a natural born negotiator, make sure you have someone with’you that is. Like all flea markets and antique shops, the dealers are ready and prepared to negotiate price. So as not to offend a seller, you always want to ask for a better price in a polite way. I’ve found that asking the question, “what’s the best price you can do” always gets some type of discount. If the price still isn’t what you want to pay, throw out a price and see if the dealer bites.
Tip: If you see multiple items at one dealer that you are interested in, ask the dealer what discount they could offer if you purchased them all. Typically dealers will knock 10% to 20% off the price.
#4. Go Off The Beaten Path. One of the things we discovered last year headed to Round Top is that there are lots of great antique shops in the small towns outside the main market area. Most of the shops had a great selection of small items like collectibles, tabletop items and small furniture pieces. And the prices were more reasonable than the what you find at Round Top.
** Favorite local shop: Whistle Stop Antiques in Giddings, Texas
#5. Plan To Have Lots Of Fun. There is a lot to see and do in Round Top so a fun time is guaranteed. In addition to shopping, make sure to visit the ‘city center’ where Royers restaurant and pie shop are located. And keep you camera handy to snap photos of the beautiful farmhouses and churches as you pass through the city.
I’m already looking forward to attending Round Top again next year because there’s still so much to see and experience.
- all images by ConfettiStyle