Getting things ready
It's crazy how much is involved in doing a show. I mean, I had NO idea how much work, effort, and money it'd be, but it really adds up. Not that it isn't fun, because it's super exciting to see things coming together, it's just... endless? The nice thing is that for a lot of this stuff, once it's done it's done, and I won't have to worry about it for future shows. Things like getting the displays to look right, figuring out how to situate everything, getting the signs and the banners printed, and buying all the equipment (tables, chairs, panels, tent, shelves, clothing rack).
And most of the stuff is done (or so I think). I'm pretty happy with how I've got my booth setup, for one, which was something I avoided sorting out for awhile. I really had to think back to the shows I've been to, and what I did and didn't like about my shopping experiences. For example, it always bugged me when the booths were cluttered and packed with stuff. I'm not claustrophobic, but seeing so much stuff all at once can be overwhelming to the casual shopper, and if you've got stuff strewn on the floor and reaching out from the walls, people won't feel comfortable maneuvering around it all. Or at least I never do.
So, I've made a conscious effort to keep things simple and neat. Each tee will be wrapped around a 13"x13" cardboard square and attached to a wall panel. That way people can see all the tees up front, without shuffling clumsily through piles of merchandise. (Another peeve of mine) Another benefit to keeping the clutter down is that it'll provide space for my customers to walk around. I know I tend to shop at shows this way because I'm always scared the vendors will latch on to me and try to sell me something. And that's something else that I'll be mindful of being behind the sales desk for once - not being too pushy! People can see you sitting there, so there's no reason to get in their face. If they have a question, they'll ask. Be observant, but be quiet.
Another technique that I'll be using is one that was suggested by David Murray, the guy behind the wonderful creations at Seibei. He recommended having a clothing rack at the edge of the booth (where foot traffic passes) with all my tees on hangers. Reason being, it's more visible, and people may be less apprehensive browsing when there's some distance between them and the vendor.
So what's left? Well, promotional stuff for one. I want to have some LF take-aways for people who want to look me up later online, so I'm planning on doing 1,000 or so buttons with just the LF logo (see pic). I also have 1,000 stickers en route from stickerrobot.com. Unlike the old ones I used to have, these will be on UV-protected vinyl, glossy and die-cut. They're going to look amazing!
I also need to assemble about 50 button packs. I haven't made more since they sold out on the site, though I still have them up for sale there since they're quick enough to produce when orders come through. And hopefully, if time permits, I'll be able to come up with a 4th button pack. I'm still not sure what of, but I'm sure I'll figure it out.
The last thing is the signage. Last night I designed the pricing sign and a URL sign (which shows links to my myspace/blog/storefront). Both of these will be displayed on the main table. I also want to have a sign somewhere mentioning the youth-large tees I've still got from the first 4 prints back in 2006. Reallllly trying to get rid of these guys, so they'll be just $5 a piece. I'll need a similar sign for the long sleeves as well, since they're easy to miss. And of course I can't forget the main vinyl banner which will be displayed on the outside of the tent. I have some interesting ideas to give my booth a really unique look, but I have yet to really sit down and design something.
I'll post with more pictures as things progress...
Oh, and check it out! The interview I did for Rumplo is now on their blog!
posted by Mr. Linty @ 8:47 AM,