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The next summer, they launched their first Smorgasburg market on Saturdays.Brooklyn Flea has launched a few projects that haven’t panned out.Any day now, a 9,000-square-foot Smorgasburg-inspired beer garden will be opening in Brooklyn, thanks to the backing of outside investors.
He felt nostalgic for the flea markets of his childhood where he’d wandered as a kid.
Fast-forward to 2008–Brooklyn was brimming with local artists and artisans, yet it didn’t have a full-fledged flea market. In the first 48 hours, he received nearly 100 applications and Brooklyn Flea was born.
Other flea markets are short-term or traveling markets.
They go from place to place for short periods of time — usually on weekends. Some short-term flea markets may not even charge a fee for a booth.
A large part of the market’s success, many would say, has to do with the quality of its offerings.
But in the beginning, being picky about what vendors they took on meant they were turning away business.In 2013 they teamed up with Whole Foods in Manhattan’s Bowery district, but soon after, realized they wouldn’t be making much money out of the partnership.Last year, the market also launched outside of Brooklyn in Philadelphia and Washington, D.C., but once it became clear there was little opportunity for growth in those locations, they decided to drop them.Still, while they’ve had their fair share of false starts, for Butler all those opportunities have been important to tackle.“I’ve been able to take baby steps,” he says. “You have to kiss a lot of frogs to get your prince.”Hosting a sprawling flea market in a borrowed space is risky business. That’s why earning the trust and respect of the people they do business with was a top priority for the pair from the start.“We have always been really straight shooters,” Butler says.In September 2007, he decided to test the waters, getting a handful of salvaged goods vendors together in a local schoolyard one Saturday in September for an event he called “Salvage Fest.” People loved it.Their enthusiasm was enough to convince Butler that he was onto something.A flea market — also sometimes called a swap meet — is like the shopping mall of garage sales. And typically, the items sell at deeply discounted prices. As a customer at a flea market, you get the benefit of being able to browse through several “stores” at once.The point is that there is a wide variety of goods that people can purchase at a flea market. This means you could decide whether or not you’d stay at your own booth.This means that there are generally a lot of customers at a flea market — if the organizers marketed correctly. Here are some tips for making money at a flea market. You could set up a booth, but have customers take their purchases to the market’s cashier to pay for them.