Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Open For Business

Well, I made a big decision this weekend.

A booth became available at my local antique mall and on November 1st it will be mine.

This is a completely new venture for me.
I've had a desire to do this for awhile but honestly, it was out of my comfort zone and I never acted on it.

But I feel like this is the right time.  
The fact that a booth opened up right before the holiday season in an antique mall just a couple of miles from my house was the sign I needed to take the plunge.

So.......any and all advice that those of you operating a booth would like to share with me would be greatly appreciated.  Your experiences, good or bad, will be helpful to me as I spend the next couple of weeks gathering, organizing and pricing my inventory.  

Thanks in advance for your help.  Wish me luck!!

Jane

79 comments:

  1. Good luck, Jane. You'll be fabulous!!!
    xoxo
    Donna

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  2. Congratulations! Can't wait to see your space.

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  3. Best of luck! You will do great! You are so talented and creative! I've learned over the years of having a booth that you have to keep it fresh. Bring in new stuff and change your displays all the time. You will love it!!

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  4. Jane,
    Congrats!!! I'm so happy for you:) You know that I was in this business for about six years and did really well with my booths...here are a few tips. Displays are a huge part of your booth and I'm sure you will have great ones. Next is changing your displays often...keeping your booth fresh for your regular customers. Add some non antique items...home decor items that mix well with antiques and vintage items. Always have sale items in your booth and have great signage. If you need to make some walls from the booths next to you...I made a wall using some old vintage screen doors (with white fabric inserted in them) once and they really got my booth a lot of attention. Looking forward to seeing what you do:)

    Blessings,
    Linda

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  5. How wonderful, your own booth at last.
    I've never done that myself so have no advice to offer I'm afraid but I just know your space will be gorgeous and is bound to be a great success.
    Can't wait to see pix!

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  6. One piece of advice I recieved was figure out what you would like to make (dollar-wise) in a month's time, divide it by 4 & try to take in that much weekly (retail price). I don't always get it done but when I have, it has really made a difference. Also, have the heads made for my snowmen (yours) & they're so cute. Thanks for the idea! Jan

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  7. WOOOOHOOOO! I am so excited for you... your booth will be amazing! I can't wait to see pictures of all of the wonderful treasures you take there. All of the local people will be so thrilled to have you and your genius repurposed artwork in the shop! Congrats and wishing you much much much success... although it is sure to happen without my wishes! the happy dance has begun over here @ 612! t. xoxooxooxo

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  8. I'm so excited for you! I've had a lot of fun with my booth over this past 1 1/2 yrs. Seems like most of my sales come from eye level displays...which is totally opposite of how I shop! My eyes are usually towards the lower level of booths looking for something I can sift thru! :) My other advice would be to keep good inventory lists along with photos after you've fluffed your booth. We have had some things lifted and sometimes we find them but sadly most we do not. The photos have really helped me with a plan of action when I haul new stuff to display because we have to redo our booths during business hours and it is difficult to be creative when people are stepping over and around ya. Good luck and have fun!
    Beth

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  9. How exciting! Good luck, I know you will do well - have fun, too!

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  10. How exciting...best wishes for a successful adventure, Jane!

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  11. Congratulations on your new endeavor! I know you will do well. That's how I started out years ago. It was out of my comfort zone as well, but you will get the hang of it before you know.

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  12. Congratulations, Jane! I am so excited for you! My advice would be to go with your heart. Display is key and if your blog is any indication at all, you will do great!!! I will say that it is sometimes a tough decision to either spend time on your booth or spend time on your blog. They work together but both are time consuming.

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  13. OH Congrats Jane.
    I am sure you will do amazingly well.
    You have a natural talent of repurposing unlike any other and that alone will attract people like flies to your space!
    Good Luck with everything!
    Amy

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  14. What a windfall...perfect time to start..just i time for the holidays. You have the perfect merchandise with all your clever re purposing..you will definitely be a hit!

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  15. Congrats and wishing you success in your new adventure! I just know your booth will be a big hit and what a perfect time to start one!
    Have fun,
    Cheryl

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  16. You are so talented you will do fine. Remember to price right and not too low. Your time is worth a lot you know.

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  17. I don't think you need much luck! You have such great ideas...you will do great!

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  18. Congratulations--so very exciting! Can't wait to hear which antique mall so I can come visit what I know will be a SPECTACULAR booth!

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  19. I know it will be wonderful! Can't wait to see what you do. photos please!! xoxo

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  20. Congratulations, Jane. I wish you all the best!!

    XO,
    Jane

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  21. I am so excited for you. You will do awesome. I agree with the other posters that display is key. My experience is from a buyer, not seller, but it really draws me into the booth if there is something special going on there.

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  22. Congrats! You will be amazing!
    Missy

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  23. Hooray! Wishing you lots of success! If you check out Sue's blog (Vintage Rescue Squad), she and a friend have written an e-book about selling at antique malls.

    My piece of advice is always freshen up/rearrange your booth even if you don't have new inventory to put in. As long as your space looks different, shoppers will come in it.

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  24. Congratulations! It sounds like a perfect opportunity. I wish I lived closer and could visit.

    Good luck!
    Pam

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  25. Perfect! I think this will work much better than etsy for you once you get everything set up. Not as time consuming with writing descriptions and taking photos. I never had a booth, considered it, but nothing really ever became available in my area (that was affordable). Also, I would think it's a lot like creating a cool booth at a craft fair...you'll do great and I look forward to posts about it.

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  26. Congratulations to you.....I know that's a big step and you will do wonderful. Don't know how helpful it might be to you, but I posted a three parts series several months ago on how to open your own antique business in an antique mall....might help if you have time to check it out. Good Luck!
    jana

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  27. Hey! Congrats! I don't have a booth myself..but my biggest advice (as a shopper) is to change the booth frequently. My favorite antique mall IS my favorite because there is always something new. :) Good luck! Keep us posted!

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  28. Hi, Jane, good for you! Best of luck to you with
    your new venture.
    Warm Regards,
    Susan

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  29. Congrats!! Wishing you much success with your booth!! It will be awesome!!
    ~Cindy~

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  30. How exciting for you Jane! You will do well. Maybe one day, I'll follow my dream and do exactly what you're doing.

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  31. Oh Jane, this sounds perfect for you. You are so cretive and will have an outlet for what you do so well. I have been a retail store owner and had a booth in a couple of Malls. The best advice I can give you is to move things around often and change displays and vignettes even if you don't have new things. You will be suprised how something will sell faster in a new place. Other than that, I know you will succeed. Can't wait to see pictures of your new "space". Have fun!!

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  32. OMG please say you live in indiana so i can shop all ur wonderful goodness
    hugs

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  33. Ok, now I really do need to plan a roadtrip! Wishing you the best of luck----I know your displays will bring people to your booth.

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  34. Hi Jane! How exciting that you are moving into a new adventure! You will have to tell me which antique mall it is in because I am going to want to come and check it out! Also shoot me an email anytime and I will be happy to share all my insights and thoughts about out local antique shoppers! :)

    Sarah

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  35. That is so wonderful for you. I am sure you will do well.

    A little tip for you... I did this when I had my own booth. On each tag make a code and within it insert the date and the price "you" paid for things. That helped me a great deal and it helps to keep the inventory flowing. My thought when pricing was that it is only worth what someone is willing to pay. If it sits for awhile, chances are good it is priced too high. I always took pictures when I reloaded for reference and that helped a great deal. I also made a list with the date, description and price of each item , initially it is a bit of work but so worth it in the end. It is so easy to lose track when you are always reloading.

    Good luck Jane. I wish you much success.

    Hugs, Deb

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  36. Jane, this is fabulous news, how excited you must be. As you can read above everyone is certain of your abilities and of your guaranteed success.
    My advice? Enjoy it. Set it up so you are confident of your expectations, and have allowed for everything in it's own time. Family, home, work.

    The timing is perfect for the holidays and you have been offered some great advice from the gals above.

    Congratulations and my very best wishes.

    xx
    z

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  37. OH I would love to shop your booth! You will have so much fun with it! My only advice would be to use vintage pieces and furniture as your displays and backdrops...gives a space a great look! I know you will do great with this!!

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  38. Jane, this is SO exciting!!! I know that it will be a HUGE success because you have a GREAT eye and are so creative and talented!!

    Can't way to see photos of your space!! It will be FAB!!

    Lou Cinda

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  39. Congratulations and best wishes! Can't wait to see pictures!!!!

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  40. congrats Jane - you will do wonderfully I'm sure. looks like you have gotten a lot of good feedback already - but the one tip I have for you that is a real time/energy saver - have everything priced and tagged before you load it in car to take to your booth - you get tired hauling everything in and arranging it all - its nice for it to be done when everything is in its place and not have to go back and price stuff at the end
    can't wait to see pics!
    amy of four corners design

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  41. Congratulations, Jane! I wish you the best of luck! I love your stuff so I'm sure you'll have an amazing booth.

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  42. Best of luck, Jane! I think this will be a good thing and it sounds like the stars were aligned on this decision. Make sure you take pictures of opening day!

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  43. Oh Jane CONGRATULATIONS Lovey....I just KNOW your space is going to be a HAVEN for Vintage Enthusiasts filled with GORGEOUS Treasures & upcycled pieces....!!

    I bet I'm not alone in thinking that I cant wait to see how you put it together via your blog....!!

    BIG AUSSIE hugs to you my CLEVER Friend....!

    Cheers from Oz,
    Tamarah :o)

    PS: Your Readers know doubt will have HEAPS of advice however, for ALL the ins & outs re selling in an Antique Mall the GORGEOUS Sue over at Vintage Rescue Squad has an AWESOME e-Book you might like to look at....!

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  44. Congratulations on your new venture!!!

    It will be wonderful how ever you put it together!!

    blessings
    barbara jean

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  45. Oh Jane I am so happy for you!
    You will be very successful, your unique and creative pieces will be scooped up before you know it!
    Advice...just make sure you have fun with it!

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  46. Congratulations Jane on your new adventure!Its bound to be a success with you at the helm,hope you will post pics of your booth and treasures to be bought there too!

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  47. good for you...wish we lived closer to each other so I could shop there! Looking forward to seeing your displays and items for sale!

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  48. You will do great, I have no doubt of that.
    Very excited for you.
    Lisa

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  49. Oh, wish I lived closer to come shopping. Good Luck & congratulations. I recently came across your blog & find it so inspiring!

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  50. Well the stars have aligned! The timing is great and the talent is even better! Have fun and keep it fresh.

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  51. You'll do great Jane! Wishing you all the best, and most importantly-have fun:@)

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  52. Oh you will be a huge hit! Congrats on the new adventure. :)

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  53. This will be perfect for you! Best of luck for lots of holiday sales.

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  54. Congrats on making this giant leap. I wish you much success! I have been wanting to do this myself but on a little bigger scale, owning the shop. One thing a girl friend of mine discovered when she had a booth, don't price your items too low. Others would buy her stuff and then turned around and sell it for more. Very bad! Can't wait to see your pictures!
    Lisa

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  55. How exciting- wishing you a successful venture! Please be sure to post pics so we can all drool.

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  56. I'm elated for you but sad for me. I wish I lived near you so that I could buy some of your stuff AND I so hope you don't decide that you don't have time for blogging!

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  57. That's great news! I've always wanted to take the plunge, but in NY. it's very costly. You will do great. Enjoy this new venture:)
    xxx Liz

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  58. I hope you just FLY......with your new adventure.

    xo

    Jo

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  59. Congratulations! You are going to have so much fun and be so successful! I did a few posts on selling and antiques booths, they are on my side bar. You might find this one interesting http://thepolkadotcloset.blogspot.com/2010/08/all-about-renting-space-at-antiques.html You are starting at a great, busy, time of year! I can't wait for all the pictures!

    Carol

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  60. AWESOMENESS!!! You go girl! I'm super excited for you Jane! Of course you will do wonderful with your booth. It's been years since I've had a booth inside a mall but the best advice I can give you is to HAVE FUN with it! I always had the best time setting up, re-arranging, decorating for the seasons/holidays. But once it became a chore and not fun anymore, I knew it was time to move on out.

    I feel sorry for your neighbors. I sure wouldn't want to be beside you... everyone would be at your booth instead of mine, lol!

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  61. Congratulations! I would love to do the same thing. Please update on how things are going. My only request is that you don't sell the little Tea canister, please :-)

    Jocelyn @
    http://justalittlesouthernhospitality.blogspot.com

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  62. Congratulations! I can't help with any advice but I wish you lots of luck, fun and success, Jane!
    Hugs,
    Julia

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  63. Woo hoo! How exciting! Can't wait to see photos of the new booth. The very first thing I learned is you need more junk than you think for that initial load-in. Secondly, be prepared for it to take over your home! Best wishes for a GREAT experience! XOX

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  64. I just found your blog today via Pinterest, and man oh man I am sure glad I did! I LOVE LOVE LOVE all your beautiful, inspiring projects.
    Good luck on your new booth venture! I know you will do very well.

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  65. Jane, before I got sick my 3 month old booth was building sales monthly and I had to let it go. We found that fluffing and rearranging kept it fresh. I made some of my best sales when I was there to talk about the creativity in each item. Also, if your mall has a front window/main display, let them use your marvelous stuff. It will drive traffic. You will do great, I just know it!

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  66. Jane, congratulations. I can't image a better person to have her own booth. Wish I lived near to shop it.

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  67. I am so excited for you Jane! I know you will do very well. Great advice here. I've never had a booth but do know how to run a business. Some of the best advice I read here was to price and tag at home so when you get to the shop you can focus on creative displays. This way you can also keep a list of inventory on your computer at home with date you added to shop and what you paid for the item. Eventually you can go back and add what it sold for. This will help with bookkeeping and with pricing similar items in the future. Consider categories too so it is easier to find similar items.

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  68. So very excited for you Jane!!! I just wish I lived closer so I could come to shop :) Be sure to post lots of pictures of your booth so we can cheer you on! It's pretty scary to "put yourself out there" so to speak...but so very rewarding when you start to sell. Best of luck to you!!! Laurel

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  69. I agree 100% with all of the commenters that you will be a success because of your creativity and vision. I have read all of the advice from other shop/booth owners and it could be fill a book...no really, every piece of advice was very valuable. You're doing something I have always wanted to do and may do in retirement. Best of luck to you dear Jane and I hope you don't have to give up your blog. It is my inspriration.
    Cheers to you!
    xoxo
    Joyce

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  70. If your booth is anything like your blog (and I know it will be!), then you are in for a successful career in antiques! I would love to take this plunge too so I'll be watching, learning and cheering you on! Please keep us all posted on each and every detail!

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  71. Your absolute knack for vignettes and creative display will have people coming back for more!!

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  72. Hi Jane,
    I would SO SHOP your booth!!! I feel that you will have much sucess because you are so creative! Lots of good advise. I am going to have 3 booths/space as of Nov 1st...rotate your stuff. Check prices that others in the same shop have.
    Warmly,
    deb :)

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  73. You go for it! I'm so happy to hear this, you'll be the hit of the mall. I've been selling at antique shows for many years, but never in a mall. Either way, it's a "learn as you go." I know your displays will be fabulous and your merchandise will be flying out so fast.

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  74. I don't have any advice, but I hope you will let me know where your booth is. I hope to be able to visit it some time.

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  75. I have wanted to do this, also. I'm like you, a little scared. I'm glad that everything is working out for you. Happy Sales!

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  76. Oh my gosh this is so right for you! I wish you all the best! You'll be so busy but who wouldn't want to own one of your pieces!! Can't wait to see photos of the setup. :)

    congrats!!
    Donna

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  77. How exciting Jane! I love your work and I think you will do great.

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Thanks for stopping by. I really enjoy reading all of your comments!