In last week’s post I went over some ideas for wall options for your booth. Now please remember there are so many more ways to come up with something for walls. Old doors and fence boards are just a couple of more that some to mind at the moment. Today, I would like to concentrate on the horizontal aspect of your booth. This would consist mainly of shelving and tables, etc.
· Tables: Often the most common piece to use as display space. Card tables, folding tables, solid tables, heck even TV trays would consist as a table. Probably the most intelligent thing manufactures did was to take the standard 30”x6ft table and make it fold in half. Now it can fit in a car easily making it much more convenient for everyone. Just the fact that they are now made out of plastic instead of heavy MDF was quite a break through for those of us that lug them around. One of the only things that bother me about the standard width table is being able to reach the wall behind it. Years ago, I purchased some 8foot tables that were only 18” wide. Yes, they are heavy but they work great for displays and customers can still reach the wall behind them also. Check restaurant and office supply warehouses for these tables.
· Table coverings: If I’ve said it once, I’ve said it a thousand times. Make sure your table coverings go all the way to the floor…and for heavens sake, make sure they’re clean and pressed (at least folded neatly so they aren’t wrinkled). It will make your booth look so much better! Under your tables is valuable space to store surplus product for restocking during the day, hide your lunch and personal belongs like jackets and purses. Many things can be used for table coverings including tablecloths, sheets, quilts, chenille bedspreads, fabric by the yard, and more. Get creative and layer them. An organza drape over a sheet may be just the look your booth needs to enhance your product. If your table covering is a bit short, push it to the front so it goes to the floor and tape it to the table. Double up if needed. No one wants to see your boxes, etc. peeking out from under the table. Recently, I’ve seen some made of stretchy polyester fabrics that are made to fit the table, with a pocket for the table leg to hook into. A very clean and modern look. What ever you choose to cover your table with, make sure it suits your style of product.
· Adding Height: Maybe you are demonstrating at your booth. Bending over all day can be a painful experience. If you have a single type product to feature you may wish your table was taller also. Well it can be done very easily. PVC pipe can be used to raise your table by making the legs longer. Most folding tables have a cross bar or the legs bend. By cutting 4 pieces of PVC pipe to slide over the legs you can make the table taller. Measure the length of the leg from the cross bar or bending point to the floor and add the extra length you need to this, cut, insert the table legs and ‘ta-da’, a taller table. This is especially nice when using your table as a check out area. Again the leaning over all day can be very uncomfortable. At the end of the event, it’s easy to tear down too.
· Raise Your Product: To make your display more appealing, raise your product off the table. A flat display is very boring. Think lifts and levels to vary the height of your display. There are probably a million things you could use to do this, but make it easy for yourself. A couple of the boxes you packed your product in could be covered with another piece of fabric or matching table covering making a higher place to display some of your product. Cans, crates, books, boxes, acrylic risers, bricks, etc. can all be used to raise your product up off the table. Some of them may need to be covered, others don’t. Again, it depends on your display and product.
· Shelving: There are many affordable and portable shelving units that can be purchased. Check your local hardware and/or discount store for these selections. If you choose to make your own, more unique shelving there are several options. Those tall shutter bi-fold doors are great for this. You’ll need 2 pair of them (check thrift stores for them for cost savings). If they aren’t already hinged into pairs you’ll want to do that. Simple pine lumber comes already cut into a 4ft length or longer. This is the width of the shelving unit you’ll be creating. Figure out how many shelves you want and purchase that many pine boards. You’ll also want to cut out a slat (maybe 2) on one shutter only in each set. Slide your boards through the slats and connect the shutter pairs. Make sure the solid shutter is on the back side of the shelving unit, giving the whole thing stability. Simply take apart when the event is over and it stores flat. Another easy shelving display is made with an old wood ladder (or two). Slide pine boards through a single ladder for a small display or use longer boards and connect two ladders together for a wider display. Both of these also let you display clear to the floor. Since my product is country/primitive I’ve also used old wood ironing boards to display stuff on also. If you use peg board or grid wall you can hang boards on hooks for shelving. I’ve also done the same thing with smaller crates (fruit crates, soda crates, etc) and doubled my shelf space.
· Other display items: Get creative. Hunt your local thrift store, your attic, basement or garage for items to use as display for your product. Old suitcases are awesome for this. Stack them for height, stagger the edges for more places to put stuff, open them for display lots of the same item. Baskets are good for displaying smaller items like ornaments, etc. Putting baskets filled with ornaments under a tree trimmed with ornaments is a wonderful way to display multiple of each one. Christmas trees can be used for more than just the holiday. Hang larger items like signs, dolls, etc in them for a focal point in your booth. Spray paint one black for Halloween. Old school chairs and desks make interesting displays for teacher related items. Place a chair on the table to add height and display up. Maybe an old wheel barrow filled with garden related items will catch a customer’s eye or what about a garden arch. If you have a canopy, hang a couple of lighter items from the framework. Unusual items make good displays that draw attention. A bucket or smaller trash can filled with beans (sand, etc) are good for displaying items on stakes, sticks, etc. If you have lots of Christmas stockings, why not try a false fireplace or a pole with lots of hooks on them. Even a chain or clothesline with clothespins will create a neat way to hang aprons, stockings, etc. Don’t forget smaller hutches or solid shelving units too. They are sturdy and easy to use as long as you have room to transport them. If you have lots of baby related items a crib would make an attention getting display.
Check back next Monday for more ideas.