“Mad Men,” Wayfarers and vinyl records are all linked by one common thread: a growing popularity driven by vintage appeal.
Often the search for good vintage venues is thought of as a large endeavor, with television shows like “American Pickers” highlighting the hunt for all things eclectic as a cross-country undertaking. University of Alabama students need look no further than the Northport Farmer’s Market to score an old-fashioned find.
In its second year, the 5th Street Vintage Market makes its spring return Sunday, bringing vintage clothes, records and furnishings to the Northport area via local and regional vendors.
Jamie Cicatiello is a market curator and owner of Tuscaloosa’s Grace Aberdean Habitat Alchemy, which specializes in upcycling products and vintage furnishings for the home. Cicatiello said the popularity of the market is driven by the continuous support of vintage admirers.
“Actually, vintage buyers are very loyal, and they are always out there,” Cicatiello said. “The vintage trend is like any other trend. It seems new because it has gotten a lot of exposure in the main stream media [lately].”
Lori Watts, one of the market curators and owner of This Ol’ Thing Vintage, a sales and estate service, said the market’s success can partially be attributed to its location.
“The University community is a huge part of the market, not only as shoppers, but [also as sellers],” Watts said. “Several of our vendors are associated with the UA circle as well.
Fellow curator Sylvia Parker, who moonlights as DJ Tom Kat Kitten when organizing Vinyl Showdown events, said the appeal of vintage has increased since she was a student. She said it is students who help keep the women’s vintage thriving.
“We have had a lot of interest from college students, and I think that young people today appreciate vintage style and objects a lot more than they did when I was in college,” Parker said.
Dani Beach, a junior majoring in entrepreneurship, is a vivid example of vintage appreciation, having played the roles of both seller and shopper. Beach began selling vintage online in July 2011 and has come to appreciate the history and design of decades past.
“I buy vintage because I like buying items that aren’t in every store and that have a history,” Beach said.
The 5th Street Vintage Market will be held Sunday from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Northport Farmer’s Market on 4150 5th Street. Concessions will be provided by local businesses Black Belt Bamboost and Mary’s Cakes.
“I was drawn to the market because we haven’t had an event dedicated to vintage and antiques in the Tuscaloosa area like this one,” Beach said. “I always find something interesting for myself or my friends and family at the market.”