Ferndale’s Upscale Flea Market Thrives

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Rust Belt Market

Nothing mass-produced or manufactured overseas; only handmade, salvage, preferably local and always unique can be found at the Rust Belt Market, Ferndale’s own
offline answer to Etsy.

Driving home from an artists’ competition in Grand Rapids one day, Tiffany and Chris Best had an “Aha!” moment. Tiffany, a fiber and acrylic artist and landscape designer, and Chris, a licensed builder and entrepreneur, had long bemoaned the limited opportunities for artists, indie designers and collectors to show their wares.

Rather than waiting for the next art fair to come to town, the couple found a market in Brooklyn, N.Y. they could model their own interpretation of a high-end flea market on. They gave it a name that pays homage to Michigan’s industrial and manufacturing roots, emblazoning Ferndale’s long-shuttered Old Navy retail space with a sign that Chris built in their backyard.

Upward of 70 rotating artists fill the 15,000-square-foot space every weekend, hawking photographs, metal sculpture, vintage furniture, antiques, Detroit Pride T-shirts and more, while visitors listen to live, local indie music and snack on artisan chocolates and gourmet pie.

Rust Belt Market, 22801 Woodward Ave., Ferndale (rustbeltmarket.com). Open 11 a.m.-7 p.m. Saturday-Sunday.


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