Yesterday Angelo and I went to a vintage market called the East Market Milano, in the vibey/hipster Lambrate district of Milan. We had only recently heard about it, but it had apparently been going on for about 3 years. We decided to make a Sunday mission of it, fueled by my obsessive love for Vintage, and my swiftly diminishing blog material, off we went. The market is located in a very cool warehouse, only a short walk from the Lambrate station.
When we eventually got there, in the hustle and bustle of market life, I had a sudden revelation of what it takes to be fully emerged in this culture. (Pick me, I love markets more than life itself)
So, here are 5 tips on surviving your first market, if you haven’t already been to one.
1. Dress To Impress
Now is your time to shine, go into your grans closet, and find something that screams vintage, anything goes. What might have been dubbed slightly unusual or would raise a couple of eyebrows in the “outside world” is perfect market attire. the weirder the better, its almost like a fancy dress competition, except there is no prize apart from bragging rights and respect.
Another thing you want to do is try and look like you didn’t put too much effort in. Now this is quite an oxymoron, because contrary to popular belief it requires a lot of work, to make it look like you don’t care. Trust me on this, I’ve tried.
2. Love ANYTHING That Is Old
Love EVERYTHING and ANYTHING that is old, in fact it doesn’t even have to be classically vintage, it can just look like it’s been through a couple of wars, and Bob’s your uncle! It’s market material. I can’t even begin to describe to you guys what Angelo and I saw at this market, anything from spoons, to buttons even only license plates.
Just go wild, similar with the clothing, anything goes. As long as it is older than you, and if you’re lucky, older than your grandmother, GET IT.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m all for the weird and wonderful, one mans trash is another mans treasure right?!
3. Bring Your Dachshund
The title of this point is slightly misleading, it should read “Bring any dog that is slightly abnormal, it doesn’t even have to be your dog, it can be a hamster”. If you have a furry sidekick to bring along with you on your market adventure you pick up 10 bonus points at the door. Naturally if your tiny best friend is wearing some sort of outfit, you go through to the final round immediately.
Now as an avid pet enthusiast, this always excites me. Not only do I get to go to a market and look at cool stuff, I also stand a chance to see a wide array of furry little beings.
4. Get Ready To Get Close
Because the venue of these events is almost as important as the event itself, inevitably you end up in a space that is usually miles too small for the amount of crowds it will bring in.
I suppose this adds to the ambiance, but just a word of advice, get ready to have at least one person stand on the back of your foot. If you are someone who was not blessed with the gift of being taller than an 8 year old, your chances of actually seeing the market in total will not extend further than the person in front of you.
You have to stand your ground in these places, place your feet firmly, and make sure you don’t hesitate, the crowds will smell fear, and then BAM you have lost your place in the line.
5. Embrace It
There is no place like the magical world of vintage markets. It’s like no other place on earth, all the weird, the wonderful, the curious and the outrageous come together to express themselves. (Of course there are a couple of normal people thrown in there too)
You’ve come here now, you are in their world, so embrace it. I love markets, I go the full 9 yards when we go to one, well I try anyway. Look at the stuff that’s on sale and think about the story behind it, that belonged to someone else, before you, it was part of a whole other life. How cool is that, quite literally a piece of history.
We have been to so many markets in our few short years of relationship, and I ‘ve been to many many more before that. Once the bug has bitten there is no going back, I will be there every. single. time.
Markets, specifically Vintage ones are just the best, there is so much to see, do, hear and usually eat. The people that go are only a side attraction! These people are trying to make a living to, so what’s better than not only doing something cool on your weekends, but actually supporting local businesses and usually entrepreneurs. If you live in or close to Milano, East Market is a must to check out. There is so much truly vintage second hand clothing and goods to chose from. It is very well organised, with DJ’s and other live music acts. As often happens at events like this, you get peckish and they have made sure there is a great selection of food and drinks. From hamburgers to Dim Sum, as well as craft beer (what hipster gathering wouldn’t have craft beer?!).
As an added extra we made a video of our little adventure, so watch it here! It’s the best!