From the flea market in Rosemont, IL this morning. This is a magical collection of items arranged in a perfectly harmonious balance with the universe. The woman that set these things out for sale is an artist. Buy all four objects together and I’m pretty sure that you could use them to build a time machine.

From the flea market in Rosemont, IL this morning. This is a magical collection of items arranged in a perfectly harmonious balance with the universe. The woman that set these things out for sale is an artist. Buy all four objects together and I’m pretty sure that you could use them to build a time machine.

From the flea market in Rosemont, IL this morning. A horrible combination of ideas: the crappy plastic spawn of Halloween, pumpkins, and football. Why?

From the flea market in Rosemont, IL this morning. A horrible combination of ideas: the crappy plastic spawn of Halloween, pumpkins, and football. Why?

Dial ‘H’ for Hotdog. From the flea market in Rosemont, IL this morning. The old man selling this stuff also sells at Swap-O-Rama and is one of my favorite vendors. Incredibly cheery guy. Nonetheless, I did not purchase any of this crap. The hot dog could probably be cut in half and turned into a wonderful coffin!

Dial ‘H’ for Hotdog. From the flea market in Rosemont, IL this morning. The old man selling this stuff also sells at Swap-O-Rama and is one of my favorite vendors. Incredibly cheery guy. Nonetheless, I did not purchase any of this crap. The hot dog could probably be cut in half and turned into a wonderful coffin!

From the flea market in Rosemont, IL this morning. If the elegant woman in this painting was still alive, I can only imagine how pissed off she’d be to find her portrait propped up against a van in a parking lot, placed at the end of a long row of cheap plastic tubs and folding tables.

From the flea market in Rosemont, IL this morning. If the elegant woman in this painting was still alive, I can only imagine how pissed off she’d be to find her portrait propped up against a van in a parking lot, placed at the end of a long row of cheap plastic tubs and folding tables.

The sexy side of Swap-O-Rama flea market, particularly for people that also have a bungee cord and barbell fetish. Taken this morning on South Ashland in Chicago.

The sexy side of Swap-O-Rama flea market, particularly for people that also have a bungee cord and barbell fetish. Taken this morning on South Ashland in Chicago.

If you’ve followed Public Collectors for a while, you know that Swap-O-Rama on South Ashland in Chicago is a special place. Here are some of today’s offerings. The real challenge here is to come up with a project that necessitates the use of each of these items.

If you’ve followed Public Collectors for a while, you know that Swap-O-Rama on South Ashland in Chicago is a special place. Here are some of today’s offerings. The real challenge here is to come up with a project that necessitates the use of each of these items.

11 notes

A page from a Gretsch guitar and amplifier catalog, from Brooklyn, NY and Chicago, IL, published in 1968.

A page from a Gretsch guitar and amplifier catalog, from Brooklyn, NY and Chicago, IL, published in 1968.



A White Falcon Hollow Body Electric guitar scanned from a Gretsch guitar and amplifier catalog, from Brooklyn, NY and Chicago, IL, published in 1968. More photos from this beautiful catalog to come.

A White Falcon Hollow Body Electric guitar scanned from a Gretsch guitar and amplifier catalog, from Brooklyn, NY and Chicago, IL, published in 1968. More photos from this beautiful catalog to come.

A page from a Gretsch guitar and amplifier catalog, from Brooklyn, NY and Chicago, IL, published in 1968. Some real Op Art design moves here. More photos from this beautiful catalog to come.

A page from a Gretsch guitar and amplifier catalog, from Brooklyn, NY and Chicago, IL, published in 1968. Some real Op Art design moves here. More photos from this beautiful catalog to come.

A Gretsch guitar and amplifier catalog, from Brooklyn, NY and Chicago, IL, published in 1968. A recent flea market find. More photos from this beautiful catalog to come.

A Gretsch guitar and amplifier catalog, from Brooklyn, NY and Chicago, IL, published in 1968. A recent flea market find. More photos from this beautiful catalog to come.

A 1959-1960 handbill of upcoming shows at Chicago’s Blue Note. This was discovered this morning inside a stack of someone’s college notebooks. I left the notebooks and settled on a nice little pile of paper ephemera.

A 1959-1960 handbill of upcoming shows at Chicago’s Blue Note. This was discovered this morning inside a stack of someone’s college notebooks. I left the notebooks and settled on a nice little pile of paper ephemera.

Wanted: Swap-O-Rama Stories!
If you have followed Public Collectors on Tumblr for a while, you know that I have a longstanding obsession with Swap-O-Rama on Ashland Avenue in Chicago. I’m seeking your stories about Swap-O-Rama for inclusion within a longer essay in an upcoming Public Collectors book (more details on that soon). I’m specifically interested in the Swap on Ashland. In addition to stories about interesting things you’ve found, I’d like to hear reflections on the social, political, experiential, and emotional spaces of Swap, and encounters you’ve had with the vendors that work there. If you visited Swap back in the 1980s or 90s and have observed changes over time, I’d love to hear your reflections on what might be different now, as well as what may have remained constant
Please contact me here to share your stories. Thank you, and feel free to reblog this call for participation!

Wanted: Swap-O-Rama Stories!

If you have followed Public Collectors on Tumblr for a while, you know that I have a longstanding obsession with Swap-O-Rama on Ashland Avenue in Chicago. I’m seeking your stories about Swap-O-Rama for inclusion within a longer essay in an upcoming Public Collectors book (more details on that soon). I’m specifically interested in the Swap on Ashland.

In addition to stories about interesting things you’ve found, I’d like to hear reflections on the social, political, experiential, and emotional spaces of Swap, and encounters you’ve had with the vendors that work there. If you visited Swap back in the 1980s or 90s and have observed changes over time, I’d love to hear your reflections on what might be different now, as well as what may have remained constant

Please contact me here to share your stories. Thank you, and feel free to reblog this call for participation!

This came from a box of 7” records at the flea market in Rosemont, IL this morning. Every 45 in the box had a handmade sleeve created from cut up, glued and folded pages torn out of magazines. All of the image/text/record choices appeared to be arbitrary in relationship to each other. I purchased two examples that I thought had the best image placements and records.

This came from a box of 7” records at the flea market in Rosemont, IL this morning. Every 45 in the box had a handmade sleeve created from cut up, glued and folded pages torn out of magazines. All of the image/text/record choices appeared to be arbitrary in relationship to each other. I purchased two examples that I thought had the best image placements and records.

This came from a box of 7” records at the flea market in Rosemont, IL this morning. Every 45 in the box had a handmade sleeve created from cut up, glued and folded pages torn out of magazines. All of the image/text/record choices appeared to be arbitrary in relationship to each other. I purchased two examples that I thought had the best image placements and records.

This came from a box of 7” records at the flea market in Rosemont, IL this morning. Every 45 in the box had a handmade sleeve created from cut up, glued and folded pages torn out of magazines. All of the image/text/record choices appeared to be arbitrary in relationship to each other. I purchased two examples that I thought had the best image placements and records.

Items not purchased from the flea market in Rosemont, IL this morning: Freddy Kruger and severed heads costume ensemble. I guess it’s not too soon to start selling Halloween stuff?

Items not purchased from the flea market in Rosemont, IL this morning: Freddy Kruger and severed heads costume ensemble. I guess it’s not too soon to start selling Halloween stuff?