• Karen Seiger

New Glory Days for the Chelsea Flea Market

When the news came out that the Antiques Garage was finally closing down earlier this summer, we all cried, “Nooooooooooo!!!” Right?

While nobody is sadder than yours truly when a market closes (well, except for the market owners, managers and vendors), I am happy to say that the loss of the Antiques Garage has been mitigated by the revitalization of the Hell’s Kitchen Flea and especially the Chelsea Flea Market on 25th Street between 6th Avenue and Broadway, just a block east of the old garage.

Shoppers at the Chelsea Flea

The fact is that the vendors whom we knew and loved in the Garage have quickly relocated their shops to these two market venues owned by The Annex Markets organization. This is the group that ran the historic Chelsea Flea markets that were so vibrant in the 1980’s and ’90’s. Just ask any of the long-time vendors about that period, and they’ll tell you all about the crowds and celebrities who visited their tents and tables.

Last Sunday I visited the new Chelsea Flea Market, next to the St. Sava Serbian Orthodox Cathedral. I am happy to report that the Chelsea Flea features an intriguing and irresistible collection of vendors and objects.

They have expanded the market space, paved the lot and added security. In addition to occupying more space, the market now extends into the cozy alley between two buildings at the back of the lot.

There is a $1 entrance fee, just like back in the day. It shouldn’t deter you because a) your fee goes to keeping the market safe and organized, and b) it’s only a dollar, which is not too steep a price to pay for hours of treasure hunting.

I love the comfortably wide walkways and the uniform white tents. The vendors bring abundant collections of all the things you look for in a great flea market: vintage clothing and jewelry, home wares, furniture, historical artifacts, prints, paintings, African art, books and loads of other things you probably won’t know you need until you see them at the Flea.

The Chelsea Flea and Hell’s Kitchen Flea markets are open on weekends year-round. Make sure you leave enough time to stroll and look closely at all the amazing objects there!

~Karen Seiger, Markets of New York City

Artwork and new tents at the Chelsea Flea Market

Carnival Glass bowl on an antique chair at the Chelsea Flea

African art and vintage wares

Vendors and shoppers discussing the events of the day

Artifacts abound at the Chelsea Flea Market

Some retro pieces to enhance your style?

Beautiful French ceramic tableware

Intaglio Prints and Maps

Shoppers at the Chelsea Flea Market in New York City

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© 2020 by Karen Seiger

Markets Of New York City