July 01, 2012

Flea Market Raval, Barcelona

Flea market fun times. Could there be a greater Sunday pleasure? Living away from the UK these days, I pine for muddy fields and car boots brimming with loot but a flea market can be just as fun! In Barcelona the flea market scene is rapidly developing with mini markets cropping up in tiny passages of El Raval, in big train stations, on the seafront and in funky restaurants. Being the loyal soul I am, I tend to favour the one I am most familiar with- the rather suitably named Flea Market, Barcelona

(Setting up in February!)
Flea Market was one of the first to start this new fad back in 2007. Sellers from ages 16 to 79 gather together to sell good quality second hand goods including fashionable clothes, vintage and books. Their motto is 'One man's garbage is another man's gold'. For our modern generation, these types of market are perfect... they provide a great way to recycle old goods, meet people of all different nationalities and build a sense of community in a city where people are constantly coming and going. 

Natalia and Mark, the proud proprietors kindly answered some questions for me. Meet Natalia and Mark!
Where are you from and how long have you been in Barcelona?There are two of us: Natalia is from Badia de Valles, a commuter town near Barcelona, and myself, Mark, of Merseyside origins.  Natalia has lived here for around a decade and I moved here in 2005.

Why did you decide to start the flea market?
The first ever edition waas a vehicle for an ex-housemate to sell some of his stuff before he moved back to Sweden. There was very little of this type of thing in Barcelona, with the exception of Lost And Found, so it was necessary to start something up.
Why the location and what do you like about the Raval?We live in the Raval and have always wanted to do the market in a public space in our neighbourhood.  We were offered Pl. Blanquerna by the council as it was somewhat underused, and we have been very happy holding our markets there for the last six months or so.
In terms of my feelings toward the barrio, it's the only place in the city where you can get a four euro straight-razor shave and a bunch of coriander at 22h on a Sunday evening.

What makes you special to all the other markets?
The ethic of what we do dictates that we are not in competition with other markets.  We stand for sustainable consumption and for this reason would encourage people to organise their own events for the same end.
What we can boast to visitors to the Barcelona Flea Market are original, quality goods at reasonable prices; and to those that sell, a fairly-priced space to sell their wares and a decent presence in social media to encourage people to come and shop.
What's your favourite thing to do in Barcelona?
That's a pretty good question as there's a ton of stuff that this city can offer all year round.  We especially enjoy the cal├žotadas in January, the music festivals in June, the outdoor cinema on Montjuic in July and the Catalan wine fair on Port Vell in September.

Pictures are a combination of my own, directly from the Facebook Page and from the super cool blog United Jumble.
Markets are held monthly on a Sunday. The next one coming up will be the 29th of July.

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