I think I sign up to sell at craft fairs because I like to build displays. Merchandising was probably my favorite part of the job when I worked retail. It's incredibly fun to build something from nothing and decide what will work best for the product.
But I was stumped for a few weeks when I signed up to sell my stamps at the Queen Bee Market at the end of this month. I knew I wanted to reuse as many display pieces as possible (you can see my previous QBM booth here), but I would also be working with completely different (tiny-sized!) inventory this time. How could I make statement with something so small?
The statement idea came quickly - I plan on reusing my hinged boards as a backdrop and covering them completely (so no teal is visible) with blown-up black and white images of the stamps. The impact should work from a distance, and if I do it right, it will not be too cluttered. (I'll share this part when I get it out of my head and on to paper.)
How to display the actual inventory so it was shopable was still a challenge. The stamps are too small and insignificant to just flay flat on a table. So I considered boxed risers. Then I thought about building cubbies. Then, overwhelmed with that idea, I considered just using my Pottery Barn cubby display (see it in this post) that I use in my office to hold craft supplies. I even went so far as to set the whole thing up to see how the stamps would look in the cubby. And the answer was terrible.
It looked like a block. It was un-sturdy. The wood was too dark. The cubbies to deep. And on and on with problems. I didn't even want to buy my own stamps, much less touch the display for fear it would topple over.
So I thought about it a little bit more. I needed something with super shallow shelves. It had to be big enough to fill the table, but small enough to look full. It had to be clean and bright and organized.
I told Paul my plan and in true Paul fashion, he was skeptical. After a few sketches and some patience I got him convinced. I was optimistic that Lowe's would sell molding that could work as a shallow shelf, and sure enough, they had a full aisle of the stuff. And even better, they had it in white.
Then came the easy part. I wrapped a piece of wood in kraft paper, held it in place with staples, trimmed my molding (which is cheap, light and made from balsa wood) to the correct length and secured them to the board with guerrilla glue. After a few hours of drying - I had a custom shelf display! We are going to add two hinges to the back and wooden legs so it's sturdy and can stand on it's own on top of my folding table.
I love it. It totally accomplishes what I need it to and I like that I can use the different rows to delegate different stamp prices. I have oodles more to do, but this feels like a good start.