prime’s Guide to Zero Week: Melrose Trading Post
Sept. 30, 2014 9:23 a.m.
There’s just so much stuff.
That’s the theme of the Melrose Trading Post, held every Sunday in the parking lot of Fairfax High School. This local swap meet has a wide variety of vendors, from couples peddling organic hand scrubs to octogenarians showing off jewelry from the ‘30s.
“Eclectic” doesn’t even begin to describe the Melrose Trading Post, affectionately called the “Fairfax swap meet” by locals. While the lineup of vendors changes each week, there are those stalwart stands who arrive at the crack of dawn Sunday after Sunday.
The swap meet is an ideal place to find vintage clothes, cheap jewelry and old vinyl. Repurposed furniture and crop tops clutter the aisles.
Tickets are $3, with admission funds going toward the school. It’s a bit of a hipster haven, but the authentic vintage vendors shine despite that. The Melrose Trading Post is open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., but the earlier you get there, the better your pickings will be. Not to mention, the lines are shorter at the food trucks that are scattered across the premises.
Choice vendors include a $5 jewelry stand, tucked in the back-right corner, with gold necklaces displayed on white tables. Every necklace has a different charm, some shaped like hamburgers or scissors, others scrawled with obscenities. There’s a tapestry vendor on the left side of the parking lot, near the southern edge of the meet, that sells a wide variety of colored wall hangings in various sizes and shapes.
Vintage items are scattered in every corner. There was even a City of Los Angeles “no parking” sign from the 1940s, which read just as confusingly as current ones. There seems to be a New Age item vendor in every other stall – you will never see so many crystals (with purported healing powers) in one location.
The eclectic finds are not only great for filling your jewelry box or closet to the brim, but there’s also enough trinkets to fill your apartment too. It’s easy to spot cheap decorating finds that will add life and a little bit of uniqueness to even the blandest of homes.
Besides, who doesn’t need a vintage pencil dispenser?
By Car: From UCLA, take Sunset Boulevard into West Hollywood. Turn right on North Fairfax Avenue, and take it down to Melrose Avenue. There’s street parking in the neighborhood, but be particularly mindful of the signs – your best bet is to park on the field behind the school.
By Bus: Take the 302 down Sunset Boulevard until you get to Fairfax Avenue. Then, take the 207 to the corner of Fairfax Avenue and Melrose Avenue.