Monday, December 11, 2017
Deals & Shopping

Retail fix: Tampa Indie Flea embraces summer

The Tampa Indie Flea on Franklin Street has become a local shopping institution in its seven months of operation and will continue during the summer, when several other independent retail markets go on hiatus till the fall.

Set up the third Sunday of each month on the outskirts of downtown Tampa, the flea is family- and pet-friendly. Vendors fill the historic Mediterranean Revival Rialto Theatre — a rental/performance space that conjures the Roaring '20s Tampa of Burgert Brothers photos.

Old-fashioned craftsmanship with youthful irreverence and a savvy sense of style and humor is on display at the Tampa Indie Flea. ChicGeekErin, for instance, provides a great example of old- and new-school sensibilities with an embroidered portrait of Snoop Dogg and needlepoint lifestyle messages such as "Netflix and Chill" (chic geekerin.com).

Tampa Indie Flea founders and organizers Rosey Williams and Seanissey Loughlin curate for balance and variety, rotating members out each month to give as many start-ups and experienced merchants as possible an opportunity to participate.

What do they enjoy most? Helping others live the dream of breaking out of career ruts. "We've enjoyed fostering an interest in people trying out new things in their own enterprise while coming together with other merchants," Williams said.

Williams and Loughlin crossed paths a few months before setting up their first flea together at the Rialto in November. "We met through supporting each other's projects," Williams said. "Seanissey would come to the St. Pete Indie Market and I participated in one of his pop-up markets at Urban Outfitters with my vintage clothing setup."

The indie-preneurs compared notes about their ventures — Loughlin, a department manager at Urban Outfitters, had recently started UO's event at International Plaza, and Williams had been running the St. Pete Indie Market with success since 2012. Both are 27 and have children. They want to bridge the indie merchant communities of Tampa and St. Pete by co-presenting both the Tampa Indie Flea and St. Pete Indie Market under one umbrella.

They recently participated in the Folklore storytelling event at Tempus Projects gallery in Seminole Heights. Folklore founder Gina Moccio said she reached out to Williams and Loughlin because they have pioneered a "buy local" event trend that had been long overdue in Tampa.

"There's been a big push for local support in Tampa, including for food, music, art and goods, so it's great to have an event that supports all of the above," Moccio said. "There are vendors at Indie Flea in different stages in their maker career. Some makers are very, very close to being able to make the leap of quitting their day job and making their wares full time."

What should we expect at the Sunday Tampa Indie Flea this week?

Vendors on board (so far): Fallow Flora creates sumptuous, aromatic botanical goods made in Florida; City and Forest, a cool vintage jewelry and clothing outlet known for their chokers; Inez and Beryl, a husband-and-wife clothing retailer run by artist Cory Robinson and wife Jenn — they named their vintage pop-up after their grandparents; The Art of Danial Ryan, ironically amusing anthropomorphic prints and T-shirts with a predilection for felines ($20) — see his painted "Cat-settes," too. Speaking of kitties, Black Cat Aesthetics creates darkly humorous and compelling T-shirts.

Great gifts for dads: A variety of printing press merchants offer clever Father's Day cards, and The Hole Donuts will gift a complimentary handmade treat to fathers in attendance. Most of the vendors have fun conversation starters for less than $10.

The heat will be beaten: To allay fears of a sweaty shopping experience, the Flea will corral more merchants indoors this week. Vendors will be hawking inside the Rialto Theatre and in the back corridor of Hidden Springs Brewery, which Williams said will have spruced-up air-conditioning.

Sustenance and hydration: A variety of food trucks and other vendors will sell inexpensive grub and homemade beverages. Participants for June include iced coffee purveyors Commune + Co., the root veggies and marinated meats of Tree Dog Roots & Salsa, the savory pies of Empamamas, the waffle sandwiches and desserts of The Twisted Iron and gourmet grilled cheeses of Riddle on the Griddle.

VIP early-bird special: For a $10 ticket, you get first dibs on the merch and enjoy low traffic by being admitted an hour early.

     
Comments
Time to shine: Embrace this holiday season’s beauty trends

Time to shine: Embrace this holiday season’s beauty trends

The holiday season has officially arrived, bringing all the glitz and shine of twinkling lights and tinsel. It's also bringing festive get-togethers, and whether they're office parties or fancy soirees, the instinct is to look as shiny and bright as ...
Published: 12/08/17
From Hogwarts Castle to your home, digital projectors give a real light show

From Hogwarts Castle to your home, digital projectors give a real light show

At night, Hogwarts Castle is suddenly dusted with snow in steamy Florida. It’s not really snow, but light causing this trick of the eye. Projectors and sophisticated software then send ghosts across the castle towers. A turret spins and turns i...
Published: 12/08/17
Glass art jewelry shines at Zen Glass and another round of markets

Glass art jewelry shines at Zen Glass and another round of markets

Art Jewelry: Pendant PaloozaI can tell you from my experience working in a gallery, people love art glass jewelry, particularly pendants. They make great gifts. Find a plethora at Zen Glass Studio's Pendant Palooza on Saturday. They're showcasing jew...
Published: 12/07/17
A guide to holiday events at Disney, Universal, Busch Gardens and more theme parks

A guide to holiday events at Disney, Universal, Busch Gardens and more theme parks

Instead of shoveling snow, Christmas in Florida means celebrating the holiday season in shorts and T-shirts at theme parks and local attractions. Some parks even haul in “snow” for an authentic holiday vibe. While the last two weeks of t...
Published: 12/06/17
5 things to do under $5: Sunday Bicycle Rides, Werks and Passafire at Jannus Live

5 things to do under $5: Sunday Bicycle Rides, Werks and Passafire at Jannus Live

1. Winter Village Express: The holiday setup on the riverfront at Curtis Hixon Park this year features a new holiday-themed streetcar ride from Ybor City. Hop on at Centro Ybor after enjoying some games, holiday activities and treats, with special ho...
Published: 12/01/17
Updated: 12/08/17
As Big Beer buys up the little guys, craft brewers try to #TakeCraftBack

As Big Beer buys up the little guys, craft brewers try to #TakeCraftBack

It’s a stunt, never going to happen.Every man, woman and child in the country would have to kick in $659 and change to come up with the $213 billion it would take to buy Anheuser-Busch InBev, the world’s largest brewer. Nonetheless, the Brewers Assoc...
Published: 12/01/17
Updated: 12/02/17
Jingle down Central Avenue and take your pick of markets this weekend

Jingle down Central Avenue and take your pick of markets this weekend

ALL THE WAY: JINGLE DOWN CENTRALDowntown St. Petersburg is a great place to shop, and a few of the galleries and boutiques have come together to create a shop hop on Sunday. Jingle Down Central is fairly walkable (unless you have a load of bags, then...
Published: 11/30/17
Updated: 12/05/17
Top things to do this week: Val Kilmer as Mark Twain, Ukulele Festival, Florida ‘snow’ and boat parades

Top things to do this week: Val Kilmer as Mark Twain, Ukulele Festival, Florida ‘snow’ and boat parades

WARMEST WISHES: Snow, boat paradesChristmas is an odd time in a place that doesn’t get cold, so this weekend brings the oh-so-Florida traditions of letting kids play in fake snow and decorating boats with over-the-top lights for a floating parade. Th...
Published: 11/29/17
5 things to do under $5: Cat film fest, free Glazer Museum admission, Ybor City Cigar Heritage Festival

5 things to do under $5: Cat film fest, free Glazer Museum admission, Ybor City Cigar Heritage Festival

1 Cats Film Festival: The elaborate holiday decorations are enough to draw us to the Florida Botanical Gardens this time of year, but Saturday brings a family-friendly, 70-minute reel full of wild and hilarious cat antics curated from the Internet’s ...
Published: 11/29/17
Thanksgiving weekend shopping mall-ternatives

Thanksgiving weekend shopping mall-ternatives

Mall-ternatives: Thanksgiving Weekend ShoppingThis is it — shopping's big moment. What used to only be one major shopping event the day after Thanksgiving has now grown into a whole weekend and some change, with Cyber Monday and Giving Tuesday....
Updated one month ago