Unique goods and free books at Public Garden Flea MarketInstead of your normal run-of-the-mill flea with a haphazard gathering of booths and used clothes, the Public Garden Flea Market, happening on February 18, seems to be one with heart and thought put into it.

“When we came up with the concept of Public Garden, there wasn’t a flea market in Singapore which embodied the free spirit of flea markets from other parts of the world,” say Matt Ang and Tan Wan Qing, part of the group of friends who decided to set up their ideal version.

And it comes with a cool charity factor too. The organisers will also set up the Public Library Collection Booth, allowing any student from local art colleges who shows his or her student card to choose from a range of secondhand design books and magazines.

The idea was sparked off by a friend’s tweet, whom after doing a little spring cleaning, suggested used reading materials be collected and donated to students who are often surviving on tight budgets and can’t afford expensive text books.

More than a hundred titles have been collected from design studios, designers and other generous souls and what’s left over after the collection drive will be donated to the library of the Orita Sinclair, School of New Media, Design and the Arts.

The arts theme continues with a unique list of independent businesses who will set up shop on the day — Happy Teardrop Music, “a tiny bedroom-based music distro in Singapore” driven by one woman’s dream to sell the kind of music she loves, Teaspoon Vintage, with its quaint accessories and decor, Supermama, a small Seah Street boutique selling a collection of curated artful knick knacks, Sadie Rose with its tasty homemade cupcakes and cookies, are some of the highlights.

You can look forward to some fun activities too. Other than perusing the wide range of goods on offer interests you, pop by the Hello Stranger Photo Booth. Cool backgrounds and wacky props are provided so you can have fun with posing and getting your photos printed instantly for a fee . Or join in the Finders Keepers Scavenger Hunt, a regular feature at the flea market which sends shoppers looking for five items hidden at the event — whoever finds it first gets to keep it.

Public Garden Flea Market is on February 18, from 1 – 8pm at Goodman Arts Centre (90 Goodman Road). Log on to http://www.public-garden.com/ for more.