Antique Mall Sales & Shopping Tips

Antique Buying Guide

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In today’s post I share some of my tips for antique mall shopping and their sales! It was super fun to actually vlog this trip the antique mall and take my followers along on a recent trip.

I went to a local mall in my area called Hamiltons. I think it has over 200 vendors and took me about four hours to look through.

I did take my kids, they are all in their teens now and we can all split up. But, even when they were little we would go. As long as we didn’t try to walk through the whole building it was fun.

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Whether you have kids on tow or not, you can benefit from these antique mall sales and shopping tips.

*This post contains affiliate links to products I know &/or love.

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(Here is a similar green nightstand online)

  1. My first tip is start with a list whenever your antique mall shopping. Now of course you will find things that you didn’t know you needed (!) and you should try to get those, if the price is right. But, I did have a few things I was looking for specifically that I didn’t want to forget.
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My list included

a nightstand

antique chair for my desk

an architectural piece to put on my mantle because I still feel like it’s missing a couple details.

large wooden crate for firewood

a new nightstand, possibly a marble top or something that I wouldn’t mind turning the top into a full concrete look

small decorative pillows

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2. Bring a measuring tape. Know the space that you are trying to fill or the size of furniture you are looking for.

3. Bring some water because this is going to be a long hike.

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4. Wear good shoes. I forgot that last one I was wearing my Hunter boots but whatever, mind over matter. . .

5. Be Ok with purchasing finds that are not on your list. This is part of the fun! You just never know what you are going to find.

ALSO, be prepared for some entertainment and shock value. One of the crazy, fun things about shopping antique malls is that you find completely weird things that you would never see anywhere else and they’re just mixed in with all the pretty things!!

I saw a gigantic cheese grater, like, 2 feet tall!!! For $200. Maybe a pizza parlor would use it for a decoration. I don’t know.

I think it’s super fun to find things that your parents owned and that you grew up with. Maybe your grandma had that quirky platter or something.

You see them for sale in an antique store it always is such a trip down memory lane.

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6. Always keep an eye out for printed for sale signs within the individual booths. Sometimes I find something that I’m really interested in and think that I don’t wanna pay the price and then when I look up I see that everything in the booth is 20 %, even up to 50% off and suddenly I have an eye a new item that I am able to get.

7. Start a stash as you begin accumulating your goods. Go up to the counter and ask for a little space that’s yours. Don’t carry your things around, just keep going to the front counter. They like to know that people aren’t stealing, misplacing or breaking anything.

8. If you like a display piece and it doesn’t have a price tag, ask at the front counter. They can call the owner of the booth and possibly sell it to you.

9. Keep track of inspiration pieces, as well as pieces that you know you like for sure.

I went in looking for a architectural piece to put on my mantle in the master bedroom, instead I saw a wreath appliqué on a wall mirror that I loved and that sparks the inspiration for what I’m gonna do with them out till now.  

10. When you do find a piece that you think will work be sure to get it out and measure it. You might need to ask for help if it is too cluttered or too large.

BONUS!! When you’re done shopping, be sure to set it all out as soon as you get home and admire your goodies!!

Friends LOVE seeing the stash that that you curated for the day!! So, post those pics on social media, if you like.

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Watch the Video to see the whole shopping trip and all the treasure I found!!

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  1. Sarah
    January 27, 2020 / 3:49 PM

    Hi Sarah
    I have just found you and I am so glad I did! But I had difficulty remembering your name (she holds dearly).
    And that is my short time memory thing. But have you considered a change of name? I know you most likely spent a lot of time and thought about the name, but I’ll have a little suggestion if you don’t mind. What about: xo designs dearly

    Ps: I don’t normally write comments, this is the first time because I wish you all the best!

    Wish you all the best
    Love Sarah Savage, Ireland

    • Sarah | She Holds Dearly
      January 27, 2020 / 7:04 PM

      Thanks for the idea, Sarah! I don’t think I will be changing the name any time soon, but I love that you had an idea for me. xoxo

  2. Pat
    January 28, 2020 / 12:14 PM

    I am so~o~o smitten with the blue & white dishes on your recent Antique Mall $ales Shopping Trip!
    In 2020, I added touches of blue in my Dining Room. . .and something similar to these would be perfect!
    I’ll keep an eye for them on my next trip to our local Antique Mall!
    Always inspiring!

    • Sarah | She Holds Dearly
      January 29, 2020 / 9:33 PM

      Awww, you dining room sounds amazing! I hope you find your dishes soon. xoxo

  3. Michelle
    February 2, 2020 / 7:33 PM

    What a fun trip! So neat to see your goodies that you found! We have a similar store here in Michigan that I love to visit too. I love that you bring your kids along; my daughter is 3 and has so much fun antique-ing and thrifting with me! Your post made me laugh because it reminded me so much of myself, my Mom and my sister. We take pics of all our thrifted treasures and send them to each other after our shopping trips as well. So fun!

    • Sarah | She Holds Dearly
      February 2, 2020 / 11:08 PM

      Oh fun! These trips make the best memories don’t they?!

  4. Sherry Duff
    February 2, 2020 / 8:19 PM

    Loved your post and video!! I always have a list but somehow manage to find lots not on the list! I really get excited to find those hidden treasures at great prices!
    My daughter has always accompanied me while antiquing. Something we did when she was young, was to let her pick something to collect—in her case it was the bluish carnival ware–this way when we were shopping it would give her something to hunt for too. Now that she is grown and marriedall the beautiful pieces fill her china cabinet in her new home.

    • Sarah | She Holds Dearly
      February 2, 2020 / 11:09 PM

      So true, Sherry! I think its good to have a list and be ready for some surprises. Your tip for shopping kids is so perfect, I love it!

  5. Alicia Hursley
    June 7, 2022 / 9:06 AM

    We went to this outdoor antique mall just this last year and I absolutely love what we found! I found these awesome rugs that look so good in my entryway. I mean, of course my three-year-old spilled their juice all over it like the second we layed it down haha but nothing a good rug cleaner can’t fix. thank you so much for sharing your tips. I can’t wait to go back in a month or two.

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