41 Creative Flea Market Business Ideas

41 Creative Flea Market Business Ideas

Seeking to start a flea market business but not quite sure what to start?

The good news is, there are so many opportunities to become an entrepreneur and build an innovative product/service in this line of work.

If you're looking to start your own flea market business, there are several low-investment options you can choose from.

We put a list together below of the most creative flea market business ideas you can start today!

Here they are:

1. Start a t-shirts business ($36K/year)

Jeff from Strawn, TX, USA started Stoic Muse about 1 year ago, a t-shirts business.

  • Revenue: $3,000/ month
  • Founders: 1
  • Employees: 1
  • Location: Strawn, TX, USA

I spent 2019 living in Bali Indonesia doing the “digital nomad” thing. I was building an Amazon FBA business but was getting super burned out. I wanted to start a creative side project that would allow me to learn graphic design and sell on a new platform.

Etsy seemed like a breath of fresh air coming from the soul-sucking Amazon Seller Central (if you know you know). Here is a pic of me “digital nomading” in Bali:

starting-a-3k-month-stoic-wisdom-inspired-arts-etsy-store-while-digital-nomading-in-bali

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Jeff, on starting Stoic Muse ($3,000/month) full story ➜

2. Start an organization service business ($96K/year)

Sarah Giller Nelson from Miami, Florida, USA and Naperville, IL started Less is More Organizing Services over 11 years ago, a organization service business.

  • Revenue: $8,000/ month
  • Founders: 1
  • Employees: 2
  • Location: Miami, Florida, USA and Naperville, IL

For 15 years I was a museum curator and art historian. It was a career that I loved but once I had children I surprised myself and realized that I would prefer a career that would give me the flexibility to be more actively involved in family life.

Be flexible. Don’t stress if the launch or the time frame does not go according to plan. Life gets in the way.

While I was taking some time off to figure it out, a very good friend of mine mentioned to me that her laundry room was such a mess that she had hired someone to help her organize it. I did not know this type of service existed (this was, of course, 10 years before Hoarders, Marie Kondo and The Home Edit brought the profession to the forefront of popular culture), but I had always loved to organize, and the idea of starting my own company seemed like an interesting challenge.

how-i-started-a-8k-month-home-organizing-service

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Sarah Giller Nelson, on starting Less is More Organizing Services ($8,000/month) full story ➜

3. Start an electronics repair business ($0/year)

Allen Chiang from Connecticut, USA started Retro Radio Farm over 7 years ago, a electronics repair business.

  • Revenue: $0/ month
  • Founders: 2
  • Employees: 2
  • Location: Connecticut, USA

One day back in 2012, I happened to go to a local flea market. I wasn’t looking for anything in particular, and I'm not a flea market or garage sale regular.

I noticed these two old radios for $15 each. I had not been interested in old radios before, and I was not a collector or a retro guy. These particular radios were from 1950s, bright and colorful, oozing with retro pride, but in sad, neglected shape.

As far as my professional background, I have an electrical engineering degree but never worked on radios. My understanding of these things was only basic at best. I knew analog audio sounded better than digital from my guitar days.

finding-and-repairing-retro-radios-turned-into-a-successful-side-hustle

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Allen Chiang, on starting Retro Radio Farm ($0/month) full story ➜

4. Start an antique business ($180K/year)

Tim Showalter from Indianapolis, Indiana, USA started Hoosierboy Restorations LLC about 8 years ago, a antique business.

  • Revenue: $15,000/ month
  • Founders: 1
  • Employees: 4
  • Location: Indianapolis, Indiana, USA

At 10-years-old I saw a bicycle in a neighbor’s trash can and asked if I could have it. I ended up with two broken bikes and combined them to make one, which I rode and eventually sold.

In junior high school, I took woodshop and fell in love with woodworking. Evenings, my father, the school superintendent who had started out as a shop teacher, would take me to the school’s woodshop and we’d build furniture and Christmas presents and fix things.

Today, my career is based around restoring old bicycles, pedal cars, Coke machines as well as other items. I previously worked at Beech Grove schools doing education technology, but began to get burned out and wanted to do something that I really enjoyed. Around that same time a TV show called “American Restoration” was on the History Channel, and it inspired me. I thought, ‘Wow, that guy [on TV] is making a living at restorations, maybe I can do the same”. So I just kind of blindly cashed in my 401k and jumped into it not knowing what to do or how to run a business or anything like that. I started in my mom’s garage, and I put up a website right away.

how-i-left-a-25-year-career-to-start-a-15k-month-antiques-restoration-business

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Tim Showalter, on starting Hoosierboy Restorations LLC ($15,000/month) full story ➜

5. Start a brewery ($1.44M/year)

Diego Benitez from Los Angeles, California, USA started Progress Brewing over 7 years ago, a brewery.

  • Revenue: $120,000/ month
  • Founders: 2
  • Employees: 5
  • Location: Los Angeles, California, USA

I graduated with a PhD in chemistry in 2005 and after working in academia for a few years as a nanotechnology researcher, I joined a small angel venture investment firm as a technology analyst.

One option was to get a regular job, or… we could start a brewery.

I participated in the founding of a few angel-backed companies and as the venture fund dried up, I joined one of the portfolio companies as Chief Technology Officer. The company, Amicrobe, Inc. is focused on developing biomaterials to address antibiotic resistance.

how-this-entrepreneur-started-a-2m-craft-brewery

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Diego Benitez, on starting Progress Brewing ($120,000/month) full story ➜

6. Start a gardening tools company ($4.8M/year)

Parker Garlitz from Salt Lake City, Utah, USA started True Leaf Market almost 47 years ago, a gardening tools company.

  • Revenue: $400,000/ month
  • Founders: 4
  • Employees: 95
  • Location: Salt Lake City, Utah, USA

Our history is a little complicated because True Leaf Market as a business is the culmination of several businesses that all came together. There are various threads that weave together. I’ll start with my thread first.

In 2000, my sister Kaitlin had graduated from High School and was preparing for college. At the time I ran a small business repairing laser printers and selling printer supplies. I had started that business in 1990 serving my local area but soon discovered the Internet as a way to reach a wider market. I listed a refurbished NeXT Laser Printer on the UseNet in 1995 and ended up selling it to someone in Portugal. In 1995, that was just completely crazy to me. I was hooked and got obsessed with marketing online and by 2000 was doing much more revenue online than I was doing with the original local business. Bottom line is, I spent years in front of a computer learning how to market online by simple trial and error.

Kaitlin approached me about helping her start an online business in order to pay her way through college. We brainstormed and decided to focus on something she was passionate about. Kaitlin is a vegan and was getting into growing and juicing wheatgrass. We decided to partner up and sell wheatgrass growing kits and juicers online. We started in my garage. She would run the business day-to-day, and I would handle the online presence and marketing. We founded Living Whole Foods, Inc., and launched our first website.

how-we-started-a-400k-month-business-selling-seeds-and-growing-supplies

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Parker Garlitz, on starting True Leaf Market ($400,000/month) full story ➜

7. Start a sunglasses business ($300K/year)

Jeff Phillips from Byron Bay, New South Wales, Australia started Grown Eyewear almost 10 years ago, a sunglasses business.

  • Revenue: $25,000/ month
  • Founders: 1
  • Employees: 5
  • Location: Byron Bay, New South Wales, Australia

I was a teacher and would find my mind wandering to product ideas in class. I would say I was a good teacher and liked doing it, but it was clear that it wasn’t quite enough. In 2009 I had launched a headwear brand (Beardo®) and it was going quite well, but I had an urge to do something that would do good. So odd as it seems, the idea to create a company that ‘did only good’ came long before the actual product idea.

Be stubborn in your pursuits, but not so stubborn that you won’t humor the idea of changing paths if something isn’t likely to work.

I didn’t know what I was going to sell, only that the profits would go to help others. I was first inspired by a documentary I saw on TV in Australia about an eye doctor named Fred Hollows.

starting-a-wooden-sunglasses-brand-and-getting-on-shark-tank

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Jeff Phillips, on starting Grown Eyewear ($25,000/month) full story ➜

8. Start a jewelry making business ($48K/year)

Lindsay Ann Gottschall and Courtney Joy Bleier from Miami, Florida, USA started Ann + Joy ago, a jewelry making business.

  • Revenue: $4,000/ month
  • Founders: 2
  • Employees: 2
  • Location: Miami, Florida, USA

Courtney Joy always wanted to be a teacher as a little girl. She used to pretend to teach in her childhood home basement on Long Island, New York. Growing up in an artistic family, she became a figurative and landscape artist and eventually attended art school. After college, she decided to merge her two childhood passions together and became an art teacher.

Lindsay Ann expressed herself through art in a different way. She was in the theater and went to school for drama in New York City. While pursuing her dream of acting, she also made beaded jewelry on the side. It quickly became a passion of hers and would help lead her down a new path in life.

Within our first 3 months, we sold over 100 orders, resulting in more than $3,000 in revenue. By the end of our first year, we had sold over 2,300 orders, resulting in more than $65,000.

how-we-started-a-4k-month-handmade-flower-and-resin-jewelry-business

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Lindsay Ann Gottschall and Courtney Joy Bleier, on starting Ann + Joy ($4,000/month) full story ➜

9. Start a phone case business ($600K/year)

Andrew Moore from Toronto, Ontario, Canada started Felony Case about 9 years ago, a phone case business.

  • Revenue: $50,000/ month
  • Founders: 1
  • Employees: 1
  • Location: Toronto, Ontario, Canada

It’s a funny origin story, because I never set out to start an iPhone case company.

I had just graduated from college and I was working as a driver delivering construction supplies. It gave me a ton of time to listen to podcasts and I was really drawn to tech and startup focused ones. I had an idea for a while to do a wishlist website where people could create and share a list of gifts they wanted. I ended up having the site built, but I didn’t know how to get people using the website.

Don’t be afraid to start! Don’t overthink it, get a product out into the world and start your journey.

how-i-started-and-grew-a-50k-mo-phone-case-business

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Andrew Moore, on starting Felony Case ($50,000/month) full story ➜

10. Start a vintage housewares business

Examples of a successful vintage housewares business:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a vintage housewares business:

For further info, check out these books and products:

Learn more about starting a vintage housewares business ➜

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11. Start an upcycled furniture business

Examples of a successful upcycled furniture business:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a upcycled furniture business:

For further info, check out these books and products:

Learn more about starting an upcycled furniture business ➜

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12. Start an used fitness equipment and gear business

Examples of a successful used fitness equipment and gear business:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a used fitness equipment and gear business:

Learn more about starting an used fitness equipment and gear business ➜

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13. Start an used book store business

Examples of a successful used book store business:

For further info, check out these books and products:

Learn more about starting an used book store business ➜

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14. Start a second-hand shoes and bags business

Examples of a successful second-hand shoes and bags business:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a second-hand shoes and bags business:

For further info, check out these books and products:

Learn more about starting a second-hand shoes and bags business ➜

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15. Start a gaming, sports and entertainment center business ($4.8M/year)

Examples of a successful gaming, sports and entertainment center business:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a gaming, sports and entertainment center business:

For further info, check out these books and products:

Learn more about starting a gaming, sports and entertainment center business ➜

And for some real world inspiration, give Gregg Dukofsky's story on creating Interactive Entertainment Group a read:

I am Gregg Dukofsky and I’m the visionary and founder at Interactive Entertainment Group, an event production company. I started my business in 1988 with one idea, and since then have grown my business to include hundreds of unique products ranging from sports simulators to virtual reality to giant games. Some of our most popular offerings include a Giant Human Claw, Augmented Reality Gaming Wall, Virtual Graffiti Wall, VR Soar, and Urban Hoops.

In 2008 when the stock market crashed, disposable income became significantly limited. To recession-proof my business, my team pivoted to focus on corporate events rather than private ones. More specifically, the bulk of my business transitioned to activations involving team building, product launches, experiential marketing, trade show traffic building, brand initiatives, and holiday parties. To paint a picture of our growth, we have ranked in Inc. 5000s fastest-growing private companies three years in a row in 2018, 2019, and 2020.

how-i-started-an-award-winning-event-production-company

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Gregg Dukofsky, on starting Interactive Entertainment Group ($400,000/month) full story ➜

16. Start a painting business

Examples of a successful painting business:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a painting business:

For further info, check out these books and products:

Learn more about starting a painting business ➜

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17. Start an eco-friendly toy business

Examples of a successful eco-friendly toy business:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a eco-friendly toy business:

For further info, check out these books and products:

Learn more about starting an eco-friendly toy business ➜

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18. Start an ice cream shop business

Examples of a successful ice cream shop business:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a ice cream shop business:

For further info, check out these books and products:

Learn more about starting an ice cream shop business ➜

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19. Start a fresh farm produce business

Examples of a successful fresh farm produce business:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a fresh farm produce business:

For further info, check out these books and products:

Learn more about starting a fresh farm produce business ➜

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20. Start a tatoo removal business

Examples of a successful tatoo removal business:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a tatoo removal business:

For further info, check out these books and products:

Learn more about starting a tatoo removal business ➜

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21. Start a dress mending business

Examples of a successful dress mending business:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a dress mending business:

For further info, check out these books and products:

Learn more about starting a dress mending business ➜

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22. Start a car accessories business

Examples of a successful car accessories business:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a car accessories business:

For further info, check out these books and products:

Learn more about starting a car accessories business ➜

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23. Start a herbs business

Examples of a successful herbs business:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a herbs business:

For further info, check out these books and products:

Learn more about starting a herbs business ➜

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24. Start a seasonal items business

Examples of a successful seasonal items business:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a seasonal items business:

For further info, check out these books and products:

Learn more about starting a seasonal items business ➜

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25. Start an essential oils business

Examples of a successful essential oils business:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a essential oils business:

For further info, check out these books and products:

Learn more about starting an essential oils business ➜

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26. Start a spices business

Examples of a successful spices business:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a spices business:

For further info, check out these books and products:

Learn more about starting a spices business ➜

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27. Start an old stamps and coins business

Examples of a successful old stamps and coins business:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a old stamps and coins business:

For further info, check out these books and products:

Learn more about starting an old stamps and coins business ➜

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28. Start an used electronics business

Examples of a successful used electronics business:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a used electronics business:

For further info, check out these books and products:

Learn more about starting an used electronics business ➜

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29. Start a wall clock and alarm clock business

Examples of a successful wall clock and alarm clock business:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a wall clock and alarm clock business:

For further info, check out these books and products:

Learn more about starting a wall clock and alarm clock business ➜

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30. Start a junk sales business

Examples of a successful junk sales business:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a junk sales business:

For further info, check out these books and products:

Learn more about starting a junk sales business ➜

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31. Start a hairstyling business

Examples of a successful hairstyling business:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a hairstyling business:

For further info, check out these books and products:

Learn more about starting a hairstyling business ➜

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32. Start a restaurant

Examples of a successful restaurant:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a restaurant:

For further info, check out these books and products:

Learn more about starting a restaurant ➜

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33. Start a perfume business

Examples of a successful perfume business:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a perfume business:

For further info, check out these books and products:

Learn more about starting a perfume business ➜

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34. Start a fancy key holders business

Examples of a successful fancy key holders business:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a fancy key holders business:

Learn more about starting a fancy key holders business ➜

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35. Start a kitchen utensils business ($600K/year)

Examples of a successful kitchen utensils business:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a kitchen utensils business:

For further info, check out these books and products:

Learn more about starting a kitchen utensils business ➜

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36. Start a fresh juice and smoothies business

Examples of a successful fresh juice and smoothies business:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a fresh juice and smoothies business:

For further info, check out these books and products:

Learn more about starting a fresh juice and smoothies business ➜

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37. Start a baseball caps business

Examples of a successful baseball caps business:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a baseball caps business:

For further info, check out these books and products:

Learn more about starting a baseball caps business ➜

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38. Start an african black soap business

Examples of a successful african black soap business:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a african black soap business:

For further info, check out these books and products:

Learn more about starting an african black soap business ➜

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39. Start an artworks business ($6K/year)

Examples of a successful artworks business:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a artworks business:

For further info, check out these books and products:

Learn more about starting an artworks business ➜

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40. Start a second-hand clothing business

Examples of a successful second-hand clothing business:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a second-hand clothing business:

For further info, check out these books and products:

Learn more about starting a second-hand clothing business ➜

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41. Start an athletic footwear business ($150K/year)

Examples of a successful athletic footwear business:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a athletic footwear business:

For further info, check out these books and products:

Learn more about starting an athletic footwear business ➜

And for some real world inspiration, give Olguy Songolo's story on creating the DIFFERENCE a read:

Hello everyone! My name is Olguy Songolo. I am the co-founder and CEO of the DIFFERENCE, the very first heelless running shoe brand. Why heelless? Extensive research by the original designer, Etienne Penka, has determined that heel strikes are one of the leading causes of injury for runners, causing a host of negative health consequences in the heels, back, knees, and other impact absorption points. We discovered a simple and elegant solution: remove the heel.

As a Black-owned business, we’ve also seen a great deal of interest from the Black community. Another large segment of customers includes medical professionals such as nurses, who have found that wearing our shoes prevents the pain they are accustomed to the feeling after spending all day on their feet. Over the last two months, we’ve seen our revenue dramatically increase, grossing an average of $12,500 each month.

how-i-created-a-12-5k-month-patented-heelless-running-shoe

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Olguy Songolo, on starting the DIFFERENCE ($12,500/month) full story ➜

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