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The Styled Side: 'hipster' flea markets hit a high in L.A.

Renegade Craft Fair in Los Angeles, Winter 2013
Renegade Craft Fair in Los Angeles, Winter 2013
Evi T'Bolt

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Forget heading to the mall for clothes, accessories and gifts – hipster markets have become the place for Millennials to shop.

"This is flea market shopping for a new generation!" says Michelle Dalton Tyree from Fashion Trends Daily.

These kinds of events started in 2003 in Chicago with vendors gathering for a handful of weekends to take over a warehouse space. They would sell items like handmade jewelry and felt stuffed animals geared towards the fashion-forward (and, yes, you most definitely could put a bird on it).

Over the years, organizing the events themselves has become its own cottage industry with many different foci.

"This weekend in L.A., we have the Urban Air Market," says Tyree. "It's the only one focused on sustainable and ethical fashion brands."

But if you miss out, L.A. is also host for Unique L.A., Renegade Craft Fair, Artists & Fleas and more.

"The buzzword now is 'curated,'" says Tyree. "These markets try and distinguish themselves as 'curated' markets, meaning that there is some vetting process about who gets to sell and does it fit in with theme of the market."

They have become so hot that these markets get an insane amount of press. 

"The DIY-Pinterest-Etsy movement has been hugely instrumental in shaping the interest in these, and social media has magnified their reach."