This week we’re getting ready for one of our favorite winter markets, Three French Hens Holiday Market on November 10 and 11 at the Grundee County Fairgrounds in Morris Illinois. This market is a Friday night and Saturday market and oh so worth the trip.
Friday night is magical. Everyone seems to get a big dose of Christmas cheer. It’s usually cold, there’s a crispness to the air and an over abundance of twinkle lights puts shoppers and vendors in a holiday mood.
Some of the antique dealers from True North, the antique mall in Morris Illinois where I have space set up a sort of tent city to sell our holiday goods. We set up our tents in a circle some years, a cluster of rows other years depending on the total number of vendors. We call our little tent city True North Pole since the antique shop sponsoring this group of vendors is named True North and also because it has been almost as cold as the North Pole.
The participants are dedicated antique dealers that love selling vintage and antique items, we love setting up Christmas and holiday décor and we love spending time with each other. When it comes right down to it, we almost never see each other. Most antique dealers go into the shop every few days or each week, refill their booth, re-merchandise and move things around a bit, then get back to the business of sourcing antiques without ever running into another dealer. At these market events, we get to spend time socially together. We laugh, we compare stories, we commiserate, and generally enjoy each other’s company. There is always a fair amount of sarcastic banter and general harassment but all in good fun.
Amazingly cold some years, blustery some years, and absolutely beautifully brisk other years, the weather only serves to put everyone in a holiday mood. Our True North Pole neighbors delight in displaying their collectibles in a way that is pleasing to the eye and enchanting enough to sell. To keep us and our customers a little warmer, most of the tents have a carpet for the floor and extra quilts, tarps, blankets or chenille bedspreads hanging on the walls to keep the cold at bay and most importantly….propane heaters. Displays of vintage merchandise all benefit from holiday accents but are not limited to holiday collectibles. So, this market is a great place to find something for the collector on your list.
If you have the chance to attend a winter antiques market or a Christkindle market, go. Spend some time finding your holiday spirit and maybe even do a little holiday shopping. Who knows, you might be able to finish your holiday shopping.