Above, a scene from the San Francisco Fall Antiques Show gala in 2016.
Though many associate flea markets with summer, fall is just as popular for antique fairs and markets. The main reason is the weather: Many parts of the country are far too warm in the summer (and even in late spring) for open-air shopping. Fall also brings plenty of fine antiques shows, giving you a chance to find rare pieces with which to decorate your home before the holiday season.
Where: Chicago, Illinois
When: September 23-24
These two markets happen concurrently. The difference? Randolph Street Market has a more eclectic vibe with vendors ranging from record dealers to vintage furniture and clothing, and will have some curation from Chicago bloggers, editors, and designers. The Chicago Antique Market is focused on, well, antiques. No matter which market you attend (and we recommend both), you’ll find plenty of very well-priced finds.
Where: Round Top, Texas
When: September 25-30
You’ll enjoy a little extra time to shop the fall dates of the famous show this year, which offers thousands of square feet of antiques to browse. There’s a little bit of everything here, from classic Americana to European furniture. The fair also offers professional shipping on-site, so you don’t have to lug bigger (or more delicate) pieces home.
Where: Rhinebeck, New York
When: October 7-8
Sponsored by New York Cottages & Gardens, this smaller flea market is much easier to navigate than larger ones. Prices range, as does the selection. It’s not uncommon to find a pristine antique cabinet in one booth and then a large wooden canoe in the next. Isn’t it all about the thrill of the hunt?
Where: San Francisco, California
When: October 26-29
Inspired by the 50th anniversary of the Summer of Love, this year’s show has a strong floral theme. Whether you have your eye on a great work of art or smaller treasures, this is a show that doesn’t disappoint.
Where: Wilmington, Delaware
When: November 10-12
American antiques are the specialty of this yearly show. The selection ranges from fine silver to jewelry, paintings to furniture, and proceeds benefit the educational programming at Winterthur. This market is also wonderful for new collectors — the dealers are always happy to educate and inform about the pieces they offer.