A few weeks ago while vacationing in Mountain Home, Arkansas I went to Remember When Antiques, an antique mall. An antique mall, is typically a very large space with individually owned booths. Usually comprised of knick-knacks, costume jewelry, old books, decorative items, sometimes large pieces of furniture, all sorts of stuff depending on the owner of the booth.
It can be a little overwhelming and intimidating, if you don't know have a purpose or a reason to be there. Here's what I learned on my shopping adventure:
Stick to your collection. I knew going in there I was looking for all white, rustic and/or unique serving ware. I had this pinterest board in my head. Particularly, I was in search of cake stands, serving platters and milk glass. Focus on one time period, color or material.
Ask for a discount. You never know! Some owners already have a set discount in mind. It doesn't hurt to ask, just be thoughtful and kind about it. I got 20% off everything, but the syrup holder and the ridged white salt and pepper shakers. Score!
Buy items you will actually use. I have several large white serving platters and various white serving bowls. But I didn't have any smaller white serving platters, so I know I will use the ones bought. And I wanted some salt and pepper shakers for entertaining, I don't want to use the plastic cooking shakers (you know what I'm talking about) from Costco. You can always use cake/dessert servers and what about that awesome syrup container!
Wear comfortable shoes. This place I went to was a warehouse with concrete floors. I did a lot of walking in two hours. I can't imagine wearing my wedges or heels for something like this. Sometimes you find things on your second go around, so hence the lots of walking.
Get on your hands and knees. Don't be afraid to get dirty. Some of these booths are organized and retail ready; while others are the opposite. Shelves cluttered with stuff, piles on the floor; it wasn't until I got down in some of these booths that I found the items I bought that day.