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Bright Ideas for Flea Market Finds

Bright Ideas for Flea Market Finds

I’m on a European flea market spree and it’s almost too good to be true! Sifting though the junk for the gems runs in my family, especially when there’s bargains involved. Here’s a few ideas for items you might find be it Brussels, Belgium, or Bend, OR.

Cigar tins
Vintage cigar and cigarette tins are one of my favorite finds. I usually use them for a variety of things like holding pencils, business cards, and coins. No matter what you store in them, they look amazing anywhere in your home.

Chandelier crystals
Most of the ones I’ve found still have the wire on them or at least large enough holes to put to easy use. I’ve run into all shapes, sizes, and colors. With a little wire ring and a chain, you can have a simple, classy necklace. Get pairs for earrings. Or string a dozen together and hang them across your window and on sunny days you’ll have glistening rainbows everywhere for pure magic.

These can be a great source for collage, inspiration, or a reminder to get in touch with someone you love!

You can never have enough buttons right? Whether it’s for display in a glass vase or jar as a centerpiece, or you sew a few extra onto a pillow, they’re just fun. I like to keep an eye out for shell and bakelite pieces or unusual designs.

Read more: Crafts & Design, Crafts & Hobbies

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Aidan Koch

Aidan Koch is an illustrator, artist, and writer. Her formative years were spent in the heart of the Puget Sound in Olympia, WA. Though Portland, OR has been her home base for some time, she always has an adventure around the corner.


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5:47AM PST on Jan 22, 2013


1:28AM PST on Jan 20, 2013


12:24PM PST on Jan 19, 2013


8:40PM PDT on Apr 1, 2012

crystals are nice ...and I buy wooden cigar boxes to store "stuff " in.Buttons are can also sew them around a neckline to jazzup a plain sweater...

5:08PM PDT on Mar 29, 2012

Flea markets are so much fun. For very little money you can have craft ideas for all ages, all tastes and all budgets. Limited only by your imagination.

8:25AM PDT on Mar 29, 2012

Good ideas. Thanks for posting.

10:14PM PDT on Mar 28, 2012

Great ideas Thank you

2:23PM PDT on Mar 28, 2012

@Suzanne L. A couple of buttoney projects I've seen...used as an edging pattern for table cloths and on the hems of curtains. The curtain idea is also great for weighting a thin curtain material so that it hangs nicely too. You can also add buttons on the neckline of a plain v-necked tee, either with complimentary or contrasting colours, which is great for some individual zing. :)

1:05PM PDT on Mar 28, 2012

Button mosaic. Many thrift shops sell them by the jar.Mother of pearl ones are harder to find now days...most imitation plastic. Several books written with button craft ideas ...check your local library. I glue them on headbands, hatbands, picture/mirror frames. I'm sure schools and summer camps can use them-better than making the old standby ashtray!

12:37PM PDT on Mar 28, 2012

Great ideas.

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