Summer Switch-Up!

I'd like to revisit an archived post, to show you how making a fast, simple but large-scale change
can make an incredible impact in your retail displays for the summer season...
Come with me on a lil' trip into the past!

 I created displays for Columbia Winery in Washington state for six years. Here's the 'logo' wall made of faux tumbled marble tiles in the front entry of the shop, filled with spring merchandise.When it came time to install the new summer displays one year, we had a bit of a dilemma: The summer merchandise is very contemporary, and in colors of white, silver, and blues. With that warm-tone, old-world style tile mural, we had some serious clashing going on that did nothing at all for the product.

I needed a solution.

Enter two very large mirrors that I had on hand, purchased for decor at a previous Auction of Washington Wines Winemaker Dinner. I decided to use those mirrors to cover up the tile. (IKEA, $135. each). I had my design assistant Karen help me heft them up onto the table, then I wired them to the sidewalls. There was still some tile showing, so I hung a white drapery panel on the side. In front of that went one of the two driftwood trellises that I purchased last year as summer props. On the top, to camouflage about six inches of tile, I hung white shutters at an angle - very 'Tommy Bahama'. Other shutters went beneath the table to lighten up the shadowed area a bit.

The result?

It was shockingly different from the previous look, and got a LOT of positive comments!
The mirror not only reflected the natural light coming in the windowed front doors straight across from it,
but it also bounced light from the overhead trac fixtures right down onto the glass merchandise.

Here's a shot of the entire main display, including the forward area with wine feature.
The tables are made from driftwood, and are for sale. Those driftwood trellises weren't for sale. The white chair was mine, and also was not for sale, just a prop. (That I fished out of a dumpster - really!)

It took maybe half an hour to install the mirrors, curtain, shutters, and props for that front display.
  Well worth it, wouldn't you say?

Now, think about what you might be able to do in your retail space....
with some old doors, or a section of cedar fencing, or maybe even salvaged rusty corrugated tin roofing.
The possibilities are endless, 
and the impact of a big change could be just what you need for the summer season.

Now.....where are my sunglasses? I'm heading for the beach......

this content originally appeared here on DWK visual merchandising blog in 2007. photos mine, copyright reserved. 

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