I love markets! I am lucky enough to have worked in a great one & visited many and there is something amazing about sheer unique variety of market life. The traders come from all walks of life, no two stories being the same; they create interesting pieces of everything from jewellery to leather good, soaps to lanterns. They are the sort of places that require a nice rummaging and are hopefully worth the explore, whether it be for a sleek pop up or a slightly dusty nook & alleyways sort of place. One of the best things about markets for me is the amount of different things to buy all crammed in to one place, however it also makes it competitive and a challenge to stand out in the crowd.
Retail display is something I like to dabble in and I don’t just mean on Pinterest (as important as it is) so I thought a post would be a great excuse to sing the praises of a couple of my favourite market traders & share my must have display features.
Cupcakes ‘n’ Shhhtt, Camden Market
Consistency is a must when it comes to making yourself memorable not just for the product but your brand look. Even if you are just starting out and are making the signage yourself, use the same coloured card, medium, handwriting and so on. Once you have sorted out your branding with logo’s, colour schemes and so on you can then use that to influence you stall display.
Brand emphasis is a positive bonus in any display but the main point of good signage is to have clear information: prices, descriptions, deals and so on; people will always be nervous to ask for prices if there are none displayed, make it easy for them! And have something for people to take away too, business cards, postcards make them think about you later on & come back for more.
Oak & Awl, MANMADE – Truman Brewery
It’s a pretty simple retail point, to have a selection of products with a varied price point so you offer something for everyone but when choosing what to put on your stall you have other factors at play to consider. What is your target audience? Try a variety of your stock from large to small pieces, with a variety of prices; it compliments the stalls overall look but also if customers don’t like one product they might like another.
Different types of products offer opportunity for creative props & storage solutions: beautiful jewellery trees, colourful ceramic dishes, natural wooden crates, patterned materials and more. Try to keep the workings & fixings hidden at the back, no visible tape and wires, a well organised and stocked stall is the best impression you can make.
WeMakeLondon, Kirstie’s Handmade Fair
Vintage Cushions, Best of Britannia
Something bright and colourful has always caught attention in nature, same thing also works on a market. Sticking to a complimenting colour pallet, you need display backgrounds that don’t distract from the products, neutral colours, something like wood or I have even seen glass bottles be used. If your products are naturally strong in colour or pattern, don’t let them compete with your display let it work with them.
On the flip side if your products lack a strong colour, a strategically splash of colour can work to emphasise make it a brand colour for extra points. The single colour strength technique works best at fairs & trade shows but remember to try be original; work with the space you are given and be neat.
Orelia & Lola & Gilbert, Top Drawer – Olympia
Poppie Jasper, Camden Market
Display levels … let me explain – Think vertically! displaying items on various levels maximizes space and is visually appealing to customers. Don’t just slap the items down flat or in little piles here and there think it through. You need to be able to see your products and any sizes or variations that are available. I think a top tip to help with this is to use containers which house multiple items allowing you to stack as well as pack away stock. Steps are also a simple way to gain height and easy to paint or cover in fabric to add softness.
If you have wall space and are aloud to use it, do, it could be a place for visible signage up high or maybe a nice washing line set up. Be creative and try new things till you are happy don’t be afraid to change it up when you bring new products in and make regular changes at least seasonally to keep your display fresh.
Titfer, Camden Market
Twister Typist, Best of Britannia
This one seems simple or maybe mute whether you are inside or outside day or night you need to be able to see what you are selling. Most markets have some source of power so be safe and try some of the many solutions: fair lights are obvious for atmosphere but don’t give out much light festoon lights are the next step up and on a similar string easy to manipulate around your stall. Little spot lights, or lamps can work to highlight specific pieces but can take up valuable space.
Illuminate your space and keep them out of reach of the customers, no one likes burnt fingers. Try avoid really small inclosed spaces that nothing can fit in and become dead space.
Crafty Fox Market, Kachette
A couple of extra clues and images.
Money doesn’t always matter – Since I am always on the lookout for innovative uses for common items to solve display dilemmas, I thought this was particularly clever. Decomposable potting pots & garden labels in a haberdashers stall make lots of easily accessible sections.
Cool Crafting, Kirstie’s Handmade Fair
Another favourite of mine is to be able to see exactly what I am going to get, a couple of gift pieces with nice wrapping and branding goes along way in to convincing someone they are getting their money’s worth. Leave they with some information to take away or something pretty to hold on and spark the memory of your product & brand.
Odds & Suds, Kirstie’s Handmade Fair
One important lesson to be learned by LUSH is smell is important! Whether some fresh herbs or flowers or a good diffuser give your stall a nice smell, nothing to over powering but you’ll be surprised how far it’ll go. Spray air freshener on your stall skirt or any loose fabrics as they can get musty & dusty after a while too!
The Paper Hare, Renegade Craft Fair