Sunday, April 3, 2016
Work Smarter, Simplify Event Set Up
Since opening H and L Creations I've struggled with set up and tear down for events; more labor intense than I liked. Set up took over an hour. Considering the fact that my inventory is relatively small when viewed beside most vendors the time seemed excessive. The problem centered around the type of inventory. Jewelry; lots of small pieces, especially earrings. So how did the process work? Arrive early, set up tables, racks, and canopy (if outside), unpack the jewelry, stage each piece; look at the clock and be amazed how long this has taken to accomplish. It was not uncommon for customers to start arriving before setup was complete. Guess I didn't arrive as early as I thought. Either way, I needed to make changes if I was going to continue to do events; tedious isn't my idea of fun.
It isn't obvious but if you look close you'll see that the jewelry was hung one piece at a time; tedious. This is half of the display; more earrings on the other side, which require more set up time.
Fast forward through several set up evolutions and set up takes less than 30 minutes from trunk to tables. So what changed? I re-purposed plastic canvas; cheap, sturdy, and versatile. Now each jewelry set is hung on plastic canvas, slipped in page a protector, and stored/transported in Rubbermaid type plastic buckets. For earrings I used hot glue to secure plastic canvas in picture frames. Perfect for hanging multiple sets in a small space and they go from bucket to table in 10 seconds, a great time saver. Earrings are grouped by price.
Set up is very flexible depending on whether it is inside or out, how much space is allowed per vendor, and whether I only have tabletop area or can also use vertical racks. The below set up is in a conference room with limited space. Not ideal but it worked. Behind the earrings you see several necklace and earring sets. I use display busts to showcase pieces I think will get the most attention and the remaining sets are conveniently in the case they were transported in. They are in hanging folders; easy for shoppers to look through. If I had more space, setting more pieces out would take very little time. Simple to expand or condense the set up.
I realize the pictures aren't the best but I hope the visual helps; and I hope I have given you some ideas that will save you time and make events more fun and less work.
Your feedback and ideas are welcome. As we share ideas we all benefit.