More for less: Car boot sales

More for less: Car boot sales

Claire Sawers hitches her wagon and joins the world of the Booters

At the sound of the klaxon, hundreds of boots pop open. We’ve been in position for a good hour already, sipping coffee from a thermos and recovering from the shock of leaving bed at a very ungodly 6.30am on a Sunday. ‘Booters’, like Sunday joggers – and the very godly, come to think of it – are the ones avoiding the pubs on Saturday nights to be fresh for their Sunday exertions.

My friend and I – both car boot amateurs – have hired our clothes rail and table from the man at the NCP car park, and have been waiting for the signal to officially set up our jumble sale stall. Keen shoppers descend pretty much straight away (the sale starts at 9am, but the pros lurk by the car park doorway and swoop in when the klaxon goes at 8.30am). They’re shoulder-deep in our car boots and raking through back seat shopping bags before we’ve got time to shoo them off. While I drag a slightly over-zealous Russian man away from a Tupperware of my old jewellery still in the car boot (‘Gold?’ he asks optimistically. ‘Plastic’, I reply, sheepishly), my friend is already haggling with an eagle-eyed vintage clothes collector over a lacy 50s dress.

The first two hours are unpleasantly hectic, but the stack of notes in our biscuit tin cash box grows fast, the buzz of playing at shopkeepers and haggling with diehard car boot addicts is good, and we quickly realise that – providing you follow the ‘pile ‘em high, sell ‘em low’ golden rule of car boots – you can shift a lot of bin bags of unwanted stuff in a very short time, and for a tidy profit. (Claire Sawers).

Corn Exchange Boot Fair, Edinburgh, Sat and Sun morning, 7am–1pm. Car Boot Sale NCP Car Park, Greenside Place, Leith Street, Edinburgh, Sun, 9am–1pm. Blochairn Car Boot Sale, Blochairn Fruit Market, Blochairn Road, Glasgow, Sun 6am–3pm,

Blochairn Car Boot Sale

One of the UK's largest weekly car boot sales. Attracts over 500 sellers every Sunday with just about anything you could think of on sale, from curtains to cakes.

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