Four indoor flea markets to check out

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Old magazines like these at Robinson Flea Market are found in most of the flea markets.(Photo: Mary Hance / The Tennessean)Buy Photo

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This time of year, with all of this unpleasant winter weather, the yard sale pickings are slim.

My advice is to tide yourself over by shopping at some of these indoor flea markets, that are open all the time.

You can pull right up to the door, browse the jam-packed aisles, indulge in a little nostalgia and maybe pick up a few bargains along the way.

On a recent dreary Friday morning, I ran into shoppers Sheila Pryor and Harriet Birdwell, who were on the hunt at TN Flea Mall in White House.

“I just like to rumble around and see what‘s here,” Pryor said. “I just like to dig around —  you never know what you will find.”

And they say they usually do find something.

“Very seldom do we go home with an empty car,‘  Birdwell added.

Here are a few indoor permanent flea markets in our area, where you can get your shopping fix until garage sale season cranks back up.

The Phoenix Flea Market, open from 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. daily, 1409 Robinson Rd, (really Old Hickory Boulevard) in Old Hickory. This market, whose name is based on the fact that its original location was destroyed by fire 11 years ago, is going strong now in its 23,000 square foot space, filled with 125 booths,  and 63 dealers. Owners Becky Wingard and Larry and Dot Smith say they get lots of shoppers, including leisurely browsers who enjoy the nostalgia and fun aspects of their merchandise mix. They have a waiting list of more than 100 vendors. Wingard says the best selling items are small furniture, good clean housewares and collectibles. Prices range from a dollar to $600, with most items in the $35-$50 range. You could almost get lost in this market, which is full of interesting items, from vintage holiday decor, to jewelry to fishing lures, dolls, glassware and more. There are even a couple of mounted deer heads and a large display of Amish Jelly and relishes. or check them outon Facebook.

The TN Flea Mall, which owners Eddie and Heidi Harlin say is a hybrid antique mall/flea market, is located at 3012 Hwy 31W in White House, about two miles off Interstate 65 at exit 108. The flea mall, which opened last year, has 80 booths and 100 vendors (and a waiting list) in a 17,000-square-foot store. You will find  everything from clothing and shoes, to painted and re-purposed furniture, dolls, stuffed animals, antiques, glassware, painted saws, baby items, rustic decor, farmhouse furniture, original art work and plants.

Prices range from 65 cents for a Hot Wheels car to $1,900 for a cast iron pot bellied stove. “We call it “cool junque” said Heidi, who says the merchandise “changes all the time, we add stuff almost every day.” Vendor Sherry Lovell, who sells socks and assorted other items, summed it up this way: “Anybody who needs anything can find it here.” Open 9 am.- 5 p.m.Tuesday through Sunday..

Robinson Flea Market , 1248 Gallatin Pike S, Madison, has been in business for six years and has about 30 vendors.The market has an interesting mix of merchandise, with lots of boots (mostly men‘s), vintage clothing, art, painted furniture, comic books, toys, CDs, incense, furniture, jewelry and housewares, including but not limited to interesting salt and pepper shakers. I also saw an oversized candelabra cactus in one booth, a table full of Nyquil priced at $1 a bottle, a Ten Commandments Bible (board) Game, and was told that a cast iron fondue set had just “flown out the door.”

“We have everything from brand new socks to antiques,” said Joe Nuckoles who owns the market with “Chris” Robinson. There is a waiting list of more than 20 prospective vendors. A bonus is that two or three days a week, you will find Anthony Carter aka “A.C” out in front of the store, grilling hotdogs, ribs, chicken etc.  Open 10 a.m. – 6 p.m. Monday through Saturday and noon – 6 p.m. on Sunday.   .

Miss Lucille‘s Marketplace, 2231-L Madison St. in Clarksville. Take Exit 11 for Tennessee 76, then right on TN-76W and right on Madison. The expansive marketplace opened in 2012 and prides itself on being “upscale.” The owners Dana and Trent  Knott have a good mix of certifiable junk and collectibles, with handmade items, vintage and antique home decor and custom built and painted furniture and yard art.    
The space is 54,000 square feet and includes 200 vendors selling new and used merchandise. They used to have a large consignment and home furnishings area, but have recently converted it to sell new, but affordable furniture and home decor. There is also a coffee shop and cafe (with affordable sandwiches and salads) on site. Visit www.misslucillesmarketplace or call Open 9 a.m to 6 p.m. Monday through Saturday and 11 a.m. – 5 p.m. on Sundays.

And, of course, the big Nashville Flea Market takes place the fourth weekend of every month at Fairgrounds Nashville, with hundreds of indoor and a few hard core outdoor vendors. It is free to shop, but there is a $5 parking fee. It is Friday through Sunday, and next up is “Spring in the Air” February market Feb. 24-26.

As one Facebook post from the Phoenix market page put it, “Nothing like a little treasure hunting to lift your spirits!”

Stay cheap!

Reach Ms. Cheap at or mscheap. Follow her on Facebook at facebook/mscheap, and at Tennessean/mscheap, and on Twitter , and catch her every Thursday at 11 a.m. on WTVF-Channel 5’s “Talk of the Town.”

A few things to know:

Visit with the owners and let them know if there are certain things you are looking for. These malls can be overwhelming and you might miss something if you just breeze through. Plus, some of the markets have a “wish list” where you can ask the owners to let you know if something you are interested in comes in.

If you are considering buying an item that is $25 or more, ask if they can give you a discount or consider a reasonable offer. Often the market staff is authorized to make a 10 percent discount, or call the booth owner to see if they would consider an offer.

If you plan to purchase a large piece, have a plan for getting it delivered. Most of these markets do not have delivery, but likely have s for delivery services. 

Know that certain items like silver plate, china, and antique dolls are not in high demand these days. So if you have a good creative use for those items, you might get lucky.  

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