Oh, Go Ahead - Make a Scene!

For winning displays, think 'vignettes'. Tell a story, pick the theme, and then take it as far as you can. Create a color palette, and use it for all it's worth - use it in your backdrop, your fixtures, your props, and even on the floor. Use large-scale items to pull the customers' eye into the area, then focus on smaller props:

The lamp adds a warm pool of light, which pulls your customer's eye into the display. It also combats some of the darkness of the black color. The metal tiered server acts a perfect riser, lifting the product up above table height so that there are multiple levels of interest to engage your customer.

Other small details add value and interest to the display: a few black books are stacked up to provide yet another level to sit product on. The nest is a sweet addition that brings in texture and a 3-D representation of the artwork that is on the ceramic dinnerware ('the product'). Tying props into the design of the product is essential for the success of your displays... some small branches or eggs in a clear glass vase could have been added here, as well, to keep the 'bird' theme going. Even the smallest thing adds interest - like that black & white polka dot ribbon. Just a touch of it transforms the set of nested bowls and the coffeepot into something special.

You could also add a shot of one color in a display like this to make it really pop - with this theme, a pretty robins egg blue would be perfect. The aforementioned eggs in a clear vase and a soft blue tablecloth would bring in just a touch of color - not overwhelming the impact of the black & white.

Details in your displays elevate the products you sell from what everyone else is selling - it's all about unique & professional presentation.

The display shown in the photos above was created by Jean Marie, one of the 'upstairs dealers' at Faded Elegance Antique Boutique in Snohomish, Washington. Yes, you heard that right, an antique shop. The way that display is staged, it could be in any upscale gift shop across the country - or even a showroom. All of the furniture & props are vintage, and the ceramic dinnerware 'product' is new. The style of the display is entirely fresh, engaging, and enticing to buyers - this ain't your gramma's antique shop!

Retail is theater, no matter where or what you sell..... so, go on,make a scene. Your customers may even applaud your performance!


  1. great post Deb! I "stage" my booth area with props that my faeries can sit upon to give customers an idea of how they can display their faerie when they get her home...i use the stacked book idea...upside down flower pots...have them pereching on vintage watering cans...a stump of wood..upside down candlestick (flatter bottom)...etc.....I love that part of decorating...use things iin a different way...it also paves the way to engage customers in a conversation about how they can visualize my product in their home!!!


  2. thanks for the little bistro scene. I love it!

    You are such a great inspiration.

    Have a great weekend!

  3. I like your comment that retail is theater. I always wanted to be an actress and perform...:) In highschool I was in some of the plays but of course was better at setting the stage...