Thursday, December 9, 2010

Sell Your Junk Here (Feria de San Telmo)

Every Sunday, the Buenos Aires neighborhood of San Telmo boasts a massive junk antiques fair centered around the Plaza Dorrego.  Given that we spend most of our weekends in NYC antiquing (ha), it´s probably not surprising that we hit this feria not once or twice but THREE TIMES during our month long stay - the first time solo, the second with the Meshkovs and the third with the Meltzers.

Nice and crowded. 
We wouldn´t have it any other way.
San Telmo is the oldest neighborhood in Buenos Aires.  Originally an industrial area, by the mid 19th century it was the fanciest barrio around, which is reflected in its ornate and elaborate buildings. However, a yellow fever epidemic in 1871 drove the rich out to Recoleta, and the grand homes eventually became tenement housing for poor immigrants.

Ornate, yet crumbling balconies.
The narrowest house in BA
San Telmo is also known as the birthplace of tango, a dance that for a long time was popular only among immigrents and the poor and was shunned by the rich.  Tango bands sometimes play in the middle of the Plaza, and you can find dancers in unexpected places.

Yep, they´re dancing in the middle of the vegetable market.
Antique stores line the streets, and during the Sunday feria you can literally buy anything you could possibly want or need (and a lot of things you would never want or need).

Jewelry vendors are everywhere. 
Leather jackets for sale
Old books (and some random stuff)
Even older telephones
Mismatched china
Really creepy dolls
Antique seltzer bottles
Mate cups
Barbie clothes
Old Quilmes beer bottles
Pickled Bambi?  We have no idea what this is.
Nor do we really want to know.
Feather dusters.
Of course, no feria is complete without street performers and entertainment at every turn.

I´m not sure who´s face is the most disturbing.
At least two of the three of them are clean shaven.
Can anyone explain the theme here to me?
It was 95 degrees.  This outfit looks hot.
These little girls were pretty good.
These little boys were not very good.  But so cute!
A little classical guitar action.  They were great, but the least cute of the pictured buskers.
Headless man.
JDMesh says:  Definitely worth checking out the San Telmo feria on a nice Sunday afternoon.  But really, no need to go three times.


  1. What a great place that was, I enjoyed every minute of it. My only complaint was, I didn't know where to look first!

  2. I enjoyed the fact that we didn't buy anything there!!!

  3. This reminds me of another antique fair of sorts that i recently attended...

  4. Zo-- hahaha. We commented many times about how M&P could set up a super popular stall there

    Steve- don't forget about the fork necklace!

  5. ummm sadly, i CAN actually tell you what the theme is in that pic that Jesse is in with those 3 random characters - it is a popular french cartoon/comic book hero and his friends:

    not really sure why i know that, only that I was probably forced to read it in the 10 years of French classes that i took!

    always happy to help :-)

  6. Mexican, ha! This is why we keep you around!

  7. San Telmo has a special old charm, that for me defines the romantic, charming spirit of Buenos Aires. The neo-classical facades of antique buildings are crumbling, only becoming even more magical and beautiful, like the Hotels in San Telmo. The most vividly abstract and surreal graffiti art decorates cement walls like commissioned murals. It is ugly and beautiful and I love it.
    San Telmo is my favorite neighborhood of this city.


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