Thursday, December 19, 2013

Holiday Shopping

With the exception of plant nursery trips, I've come to hate shopping.  I especially hate holiday shopping - the crowds, the parking hassles, the ever-changing "special" offers that leave you wondering if you got a good deal or should have waited to buy.  I used to avoid it altogether by shopping for Christmas gifts months in advance but I haven't been that organized for years.  This year I did most of my holiday shopping on-line.  However, last weekend, 2 friends and I ventured out for some last-minute shopping in 2 more unusual venues.

The first was the Long Beach Flea Market.  A friend had mentioned it to me as a place to find inexpensive plants and garden ornaments.  When I learned that Denise of A Growing Obsession and 2 of her friends, Dustin of non-secateur and Reuben of Rancho Reubidoux, planned to open a booth at the December market, I gathered a couple of my friends and paid a visit.  As I'd never visited a flea market before, I didn't know exactly what to expect.  The sheer volume of stuff was a bit overwhelming.  Navigating the market was also challenging - there was no map to help you locate booths of particular interest.  I didn't take any photos at the market but you can find a slideshow on the market's webpage.  If I'd had the foresight to bring a cart of some kind, I might of carried more home with me but, without that, I restricted my purchases to a table-runner and some old editions of Garden Illustrated and plants offered by Denise, Dustin and Reuben.

Dustin provided the name of this succulent but I didn't write it down - I think it's Ledebouria socialis


As exhausted as my friends and I were after our visit to the flea market, we had another stop to make.  After a lunch break, we visited Crafted at the Port of Los Angeles.   This warehouse-based crafts and arts emporium is only about 15 minutes from my home.  Most importantly, my very good friend, Patsy, has a booth there, from which she sells quilted items.








Crafted has had its ups and downs but it's at its best this holiday season.  I wished I'd visited at an earlier stage of my holiday shopping process.






 




There are places to take holiday photos.






And places to buy holiday cards and stationary items created from photo collages.






Used books.






Beauty products and specialty food items.






Even succulents.


Although the succulents in the earlier picture were real, those in this photo were not





And there was entertainment.



It was a very different and much lower-key shopping experience than the flea market but there were still good deals to be had.  If you're in the vicinity of the Port of Los Angeles in San Pedro and still have holiday shopping to do, it's definitely worth a visit.  Stop by and see Patsy and her fellow crafters and artists.

And, coming next year, apparently there will be an adjacent brewery.




What more can you ask for?

14 comments:

  1. What a fun day of shopping. I wish I could have attended the flea market! Much better than malls!

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    1. Yes, much better than a mall, although just about anything would be in my book.

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  2. I'm surprised Patsy didn't jump in for any of those photos seeing she's so camera friendly. ;)

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    1. There's a picture of Patsy on the Crafted webpage. It was taken by an LA Times photographer last year.

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  3. What fun and different places you found to go shopping. I love flea markets. That's an interesting spotted succulent that you bought too.

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    1. Yes, I don't think I've seen this succulent before. I hope it does well here.

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  4. That place looks fun Kris, you can pick up so many unique gifts there :)

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    1. It was fun, if also more than a little overwhelming. A shopaholic, I'm not.

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  5. I'm with you, I HATE shopping, except for plants or things relating to them. (and also op shops!)

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    1. It's funny but nothing whatsoever bothers me about nursery shopping.

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  6. A fun day to see so many interesting things. I also find Flea Markets overwhelming but fun. I used to shop after Christmas for the following year. Now there's not much left to choose from!

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  7. This looks like my kind of Christmas shopping!!! I love flea markets. There used to be one that came to town about once every three months but it stopped a few years ago. Now I have to go to thrift stores to find my goodies.

    I wanted to thank you for identifying my mystery plant. I updated my blog and gave credit to you. Thank you. I'm going to write it down so I don't forget it again. :)

    Have a wonderful Christmas.

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  8. Interesting adventure! Dear Husband will get what I was able to find while being stuck waiting to have my car battery recharged.

    Yes, it's odd, but shopping for plants is a whole different thing...

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    1. I can only imagine what can be found in the vicinity of an auto body shop! My husband is impossible to buy for - I usually request a list and, even with that, I sometimes have only a foggy idea of what I'm ordering as our interests run in very different directions. I always throw in a wild card, though - I've gotta get him out of his rut somehow.

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