Sunday, September 28, 2014

Vintage Dealer Interview = Nest Vintage Modern

We hope everyone is enjoying the first weekend of Fall. The weather has been gorgeous. Not too hot or cold. Just right. We've noticed some Fall foliage starting to take place around here. Eeek. Like many others, this is my favorite time of the year. There's something about Fall that makes me want to get out and pick and junk till my hearts content. And speaking of pickin...we are interviewing, Alana Waters-Piper today of Nest Vintage Modern. 

Nest Vintage Modern
@Jackson Square Antique Mall
112 East Burlington Ave.LaGrange, IL 708.352.4120

We are so happy to have her here today. So let's get started! 




1 . How long have you been a vintage dealer? 4 years.

2. What type of setting are you in? I sell at Jackson Square Antique Mall in La Grange, IL. It's about 20 minutes west of downtown Chicago. I was a customer there for 12 years before I got my own booth. I've found so many wonderful things for our home there, so it's a great fit. I also do regional markets like Nellie's Barn Sale and Kane County. Last year we had a blast at the Country Living Fair in Ohio. (Highly recommend making the trip!)

3. How many booths do you have? I keep one booth in the antique mall, then my traveling setup. -Plus I sell on Etsy.

4. What size booth/s do you have? My antique mall booth is about 10x18, but the market setup is usually about 10x10 and in front of my vintage trailer. I find that manageable to set up on my own. 

5. What do you sell? I try to keep a defined story in mind for what I sell. Usually it's something which could have been in my grandmother's home. One grandmother was all about 40's farmhouse style, the other was into designer mid-century. I tend to lean toward farmhouse with a little MCM thrown in. I'll mix in new items that have vintage flair, like handmade pennants, candles, and jewelry.

6. What do you find sells the most in your booth? Linens. I think those really tug on people's hearts. Folks see an old tablecloth and it takes them back to great moments with their mother or grandmother. They're easy to store and usually affordable so you don't have to feel guilty about picking one up for your collection. 

7. What do find sells the least in your booth? Oddly, soaps. I really thought beautiful handmade soaps would sell well since it's an affordable luxury, but nope! Sometimes I get a gut feeling that something will really light folks up, but sometimes it's off. Oh well!

8. Why do you think your booth has been successful? I think it's successful because everything about it is a genuine love of mine. My heart is completely in it. It's not something I did just because I thought it was fun, though there's not a thing wrong with that. A large reason I have my booth is because somehow going out to find, clean up, rescue, and find new homes for these items feels like I'm honoring my family history. My mother has 2 booths in Texas and has pretty much always done antique malls and markets. My grandfather on my dad's side had an antique furniture store. My grandmother was a big believer in getting something well made then caring for and repairing it if needed. Things rarely got thrown out. She sewed her curtains, linens, and clothes. They were simple with pretty touches to make them special. A plain green pillowcase would get hand-tatted trim. Simple cotton curtains would get a plain ruffle to make them sweet. That's what I grew up around and the wares I sell are tangible memoirs that honor the people I love. Does that make sense?

9. How often do you refresh your booth? I try to get it at least once a week to spruce up and add-to.

10.  What mistakes have you made and learned from as dealer? Not mixing in enough smalls. At first I wanted to be all about furniture. The tough part with that is it makes doing markets absolutely exhausting. You're basically moving an entire apartment's worth of goods each weekend. Take a handful of good furniture pieces, then mix in linens and smalls. Make sure there's a little something for anyone who likes your style. Something that's an easy treat to indulge in, some good giftables, or affordable painted furniture that's easy for a young woman trying to outfit her first home. 

11. What advice do you have for someone just starting out? Paint the story you want to tell with your booth and stick to it. Make a set of questions that help you define the story you want your personal brand to be about. Keep asking yourself those questions as you hunt for goods, then you'll have a cohesive collection instead of a box of clutter. That and get a Square reader & a reliable truck!

12. What do you think the number one mistake is that unsuccessful dealers make? Being inflexible or refusing to listen to their antique mall owners. Those folks know what sells in their space. Pick their brains and ask for advice.

13. Do you do this full time? I have before. I am now, but also freelance as a graphic designer.

14. Do you stick to a specific color scheme with your booth? No, but I try to keep my brand colors teal & red. 

15. Do you utilize social media, and if so, which ones work best? I love Facebook. I started a page about 4 years ago and am up to just about 30,000 followers at this point. Pinterest is strong, but I'm not as strong on Twitter or Instagram. Facebook tends to be the place where we're all more conversational. I'll post a picture of an old Green Stamps book and everyone has a memory of them. Sometimes the conversations go on for days or weeks. I love that! It's so fun to hear everyone's stories.

16. How do you break down and come up with your prices? I balance between my comfort level as a potential customer, sold prices on eBay, Etsy, and my peers in the mall. I try to lean to the lower end of the price range for quicker sales. It's better for customers to know they'll see fresh goods when they come back then the same old stale stuff that I could have sold a long time ago if I had priced it for $10 less. Everything has to pay it's rent. If a dresser sits for 6 months at $300 when it would have sold in 1 month at $200, then it didn't pay it's rent.

17. Where do you find your vintage goods? I'm so glad you asked! Watch our video here


18. Do you change your booth out to reflect the season and or holidays? I do! I need to go over now and pull out the summer camping stuff, but I leave the picnic items and add wool blankets for fall tailgating. There's a baseline of items which are always there, like dishes and furniture, but I'll add touches of holiday items to making being there fun for customers.

19. Do you swap out stale merchandise or do you reduce it for a fast sale? I do! And sometimes it's all about rearranging. I'll move something from the shelf to a tabletop and all of a sudden it's gone. For some reason people see it as new or maybe they didn't see it before. So in addition to swapping out stale goods to go to market or putting it on sale, sometimes just rearranging stimulates sales.

20. Do you think booth location is important? YES! Absolutely, just like any retail location, you want to be in the main flow of traffic. 

21. Do you use any kind of inventory software for your personal use? I use Square register to track sales at markets, then I keep photos & a list of everything at my antique mall booth.

22. Do you market your booth/s outside social media? I used to place print ads in local publications, but as much as I personally want to support print media, I've found that I get much more bang for my buck in social media, so that's where all of my ad budget goes now.

Do you have any other advice tips or info you would like to add? Sell what you love. Pay attention to trends, but if you sell what you love it'll always be fun. A couple winters ago I sold at a market about 4 hours from home. It was freezing cold and I slept in my chilly vintage camper but I had a blast! The people who do this for a living are good folks. Salt of the earth people who are usually pretty darn nice. Get out and meet the other dealers. You'll see them over and over. They'll become your clan of vintage gypsies, like family you look forward to seeing at the next market. It's a wonderful community to be a part of.


Thank you so much, Alana for an awesome interview! 

Friday, September 26, 2014

To Snap or not to Snap!

Come on over to our Facebook page. We are having a discussion on whether or not your antique shop or mall allows photography. Here's the link.

Sunday, September 21, 2014

Antique Shop Owner Interview No. 2 = Hand Pickin Emporium

Happy Sunday friends. Hope everyone had a great weekend. The weather is certainly beginning to feel like fall around here and we are loving it. We were able to get out this weekend to a small town festival and car show. As usual we ate to much junk food that the vendors were offering up this year. But enough about our weekend. Let's get on with our weekly interview. We had the pleasure to of speaking with shop owners, Barb and Bob of Hand Pickin Emporium They are located in the heart of old Rocklin 4155 Rocklin Road, Rocklin, CA 95677. Click here to visit their facebook page. 


1. How long have your been a shop owner? My Partner and I have had a shop going on 4 years.  Hand Pickin Emporium is the second store.  It is an Antique Mall

2. How large is your store? 5000 sf. 

3. Do rent out booth space? Yes we have indoor and outdoor spaces and we do Outdoor Picker Markets every 4thSunday.

4. Before becoming a shop owner, were you a vintage dealer?  We started collecting as a hobby.

5. What do think your hot ticket items are that customers just can't get enough of? Wow that really changes Monthly, weekly and daily. 

6. What are your non selling items? Vintage Clothing

7. Do you think the shabby look is still selling very well? Yes, We sell more painted furniture then natural wood.

8. Do you sell a lot of industrial chic and salvaged items? We sell hardware, doors, windows and anything Victorian. 

9. Do you utilize social media? If so, which ones work best for you? Yes, I am a huge believer in the internet and the power of it reaching people.  Facebook is still my favorite.
10. Does your store offer any kind of creative classes? Yes, We have a paint class featuring our Pretty Powder Paint.  We teach different paint techniques.

11. How many days a week are you open? 7 days a week.  That will change in winter I am hoping for a 5 day week.

12. Why do you think your shop has been successful?  One reason is our dealers.  They are all so talented and smart "PICKER'S ".  We try to have something for everyone and every type of collector.  We also keep a "wish list" for our costumers.

13. What advice would you have for someone going into business for themselves? Know it will be the hardest job you will ever have.  We work 7 days a week 13 hr a day.  We eat, drink and sleep Hand Pickin Emporium.  Make sure you love what you do and who you do it with because that makes all the different in the world.

14. What do you think the biggest mistakes are that vendors make? Thinking they will go into a space fill it up and forget about it for a month.  I warn all mine that getting a booth is when the hobby becomes a business. Booths need fresh stock weekly. 

15. What do you think the biggest mistakes are that shop owners make? Thinking it will be fun to own a store. It is a lot of work and finding a partner that shares your vision is a must. I am lucky my partner knows my strengths along with my weakness and trust me when I make a decision. 

16. Have your done any barn sales or Vintage Markets? If so, how many? We have Pop up Markets called "Outdoor Picker Market's every 4th Sunday.  We have been doing them for about a year.

17. Do you doing shows? No shows any more. I miss doing them, just like I miss hitting the road.  Hopefully those will be in my future again.

18. What are some advantages and disadvantages of doing shows? I feel the advantage is it helps you streamline you pickin. Teaches you what sells and what doesn't.  Also let's you meet people that shares your passion. Disadvantages? Early Mornings, long hours, lots of lifting and lots of cookie loos.

19. What advice do you have for someone that wants to do a show, but has never done one? Have a cute booth.  I know people a visual and cute booths do good. Neat and organize wins.

Thank you so much, Barb and Bob. We appreciate you taking the time to speak with us. 


Sunday, September 14, 2014

Vintage Dealer No. 8 Vintage Picks by Jen

Good evening friends. We hope you have had a great weekend. They always go by too fast around here. A couple of weeks ago we lost all of our e-mail which meant we lost all of the interviews that had been emailed to us too. :-(  We posted about it, but wanted to mention it again for those of you that may have missed that post. Thankfully, Vintage Picks by Jen sent her's in to us again. So that's the one we are sharing today.


1. How long have you been a vintage dealer? In several different forms, I've been selling vintage for about 10 years.

2. What type of setting are you in? Living on Cape Cod, our population changes drastically from winter to summer, when we experience an influx of visitors.  As a result, small business owners must be very creative and plan for the changing economy throughout the year.  For sure, sales are at their highest during the summer, which I believe differs from other parts of the country.

3. How many booths do you have? Presently I have two locations, one large booth off-Cape in a 2-floored traditional group shop and one wee kitchen counter on-Cape in a 2-floored antique shop, both located in the centers of their respective towns.  I also sell vintage at flea markets, bazaars, local special events or markets and I even popped up in a shop for a weekend.  I spent last year in a wonderful little booth at Vintage Thymes Monthly Market, which has been my most favorite experience, but unfortunately located 1.5 hours away.  For that booth, we were required each month to stage a new vignette, with new merchandise for the sale that would take place during the second weekend of the month.  The space of about 20 dealers was filled with a wonderful mix of vintage and hand crafted items and was a very popular destination for customers.  It was a great way to try out having my own little “shop.”  I’ve found that setting up at local markets and holiday events requires a different mind-set when planning and prepping.  Consideration of the types of customers you may encounter for that one day event is necessary, ensuring that you’ve packed up, then displayed the items most likely to sell.  In these settings, I’ve had success with vintage items along with some vintage re-purposed handmade added in and set up to appear like a little shop on the go.  It can be a lot of work for one day, so it’s important to balance the costs of the event with anticipated sales, and in some cases, I’ve found that collaboration with others to share a space has been a great option.

4. What size booth/s do you have? Currently, my vintage is located on a counter that is approximately 2’x7’ and a central floor space of approximately 10’x15’ . . .both of which present different challenges due to their sizes and configurations.  I actually seem more comfortable working in a smaller space, so I’ve broken up my larger booth in to two spaces.  My large space has a column that I’ve wrapped in shutters, allowing me “wall space” to hang framed pictures and art.  In addition, I tend to stack smaller pieces of furniture to maximize display space and use a hutch –type piece as my focal point.  To maximize space on the kitchen counter (yes, including a sink) I’ve used items such as a chair, cake stands, crate, step ladder, wicker shelf, stools and travel cases in order to add interest to what would otherwise be a very flat surface.

5. What do you sell? I sell items that speak to me . . .which tend to fall under a very broad category of rusty metal, glassware, picnicware, mid-century, kitchen, funky/what is it, nautical and pretty & sweet!

6. What do you find sells the most in your booth? It definitely depends upon the location, and shows the importance of knowing your market at each location.  At my larger location where I’ve been for 8 months, I’m still trying to figure out what’s hot because it seems very hit or miss, but definitely Pyrex bowls & fridgies, framed artwork, old photos, nautical, serving utensils/cheese domes/cake plates and thermoses/picnicware.  Due to the shop’s large size and number of other dealers, my sense is that if it’s price right, the item will sell or if the customer falls in love with the item.   At my little kitchen counter, where I’ve been for 6 months, pitchers/creamers, dessert dishes/plates, ironstone and glassware have been popular.

7. What do find sells the least in your booth?  Vintage purses, linens, furniture, books, galvanized

8. Why do you think your booth has been successful? I believe that I price fairly and ensure that my space looks different from the surrounding spaces.

9. How often do you refresh your booth? I try to visit my spaces at least 3 times per month for a refresh and adding new goods.

10.  What mistakes have you made and learned from as dealer? Stay away from theme type purchases (for example, items specific to an upcoming holiday, other than Christmas) and stick with what I know, which is the items that speak to me or something that I myself would want.  Also, I’ve found that I very much miss the interaction with customers in my booth spaces (since both shops are staffed) so am grateful for the customer interaction on Facebook and when I set up at local markets and events.  I always love to learn about the beautiful old things that find their new homes!

11. What advice do you have for someone just starting out?  Buy low so that you can afford to price fairly, stay organized and refresh your items in your space.  Side note: when buying low, don’t go crazy buying items just because they’re cost effective, buy what you think will sell in the venues where you’ll be so as not to be burdened with a lot of extra stuff.

12. What do you think the number one mistake is that unsuccessful dealers make? Overpricing items

13. Do you do this full time?  I do not, though I often dream of having my own shop full time!

14. Do you stick to a specific color scheme with your booth?  I use a lot of green/white/beige for my furniture/set up pieces and try to group & layer items to tell a story either by color or by subject matter (back to school, nautical, farmhouse).  At present, I have a red, white and blue shelf because I loved how my 4th of July vignette looked, but it’s about time to change up that display.

15. Do you utilize social media, and if so, which ones work best? I have been actively promoting my vintage at Vintage Picks by Jen on Facebook for two years now.  I love posting and sharing and interacting with my FB friends and have sold a few items as a result of the page.  Many of my FB friends have come to visit me at the various venues where I’ve set up, and it’s always such a thrill to meet them in person!

16. What is an average month in sales for your booth? $100-$400, depending upon location and time of year. . . I still consider it a hobby that I love.

17. How do you break down and come up with your prices? I wish I had a formula to offer but really, I tend to use my gut instinct. . . possibly based on what I would pay if it was an item I wanted.  I always strive for a very fair price.

18. Where do you find your vintage goods?  Yard sales, flea markets and thrift shops . . . oh, how I do love the hunt and not knowing what treasure will be found!  Over the years, I’ve streamlined my visits to thrift shops, visiting the ones where the purchase of an item would still leave some meat on the bone.  Some thrift shops have become gift shops and those I only frequent if I’m looking for something special.  The item I’m always in search of for myself . . . Cathrineholm . . . and I have my kiddos trained to help in the search!

19. Do you change your booth out to reflect the season and or holidays? Yes, getting ready to change it up to a farmhouse fall!  I do not recommend Christmas in July, however, I sold not one item!

20. Do you swap out stale merchandise or do you reduce it for a fast sale?  I tend to do both but if I’m tired of looking at an item, I’ll drop the price and bring it to the flea market.  Over the last few years, I’ve found that an item may not sell at one venue, but then sell immediately at another venue.

21. Do you think booth location is important? I’m sure that it is.  During my year at Vintage Thymes Monthly Market, I was in a very small space, but it was a corner booth not far from check out, so I felt that it was a great location for my items.  Both of my current spaces are located on the second floor, so I rely on standing out with a different look and pricing well.  I had an opportunity to relocate my large space to the first floor, but it would have meant a move to a much smaller booth.  I opted to stay in the larger location with a plan to make my space stand out.

22. Do you use any kind of inventory software for your personal use? I do not, I use notebooks for each venue to track my inventory.

23. Do you market your booth/s outside social media? Twice I’ve advertised on Craigslist for my large booth, but I haven’t yet gotten the sense that it’s been helpful.  I’ve sold a couple of dressers on Craigslist, which was great for making a quick sale and recouping the cost of the items.

Do you have any other advice tips or info you would like to add? Do y If you’re breaking into the vintage business, make sure that you love vintage and all that comes with it!  I started by taking baby steps . . . I set up a few times each summer at a flea market (rent is only $20-$25), two summers ago I decided to splurge and buy business cards, immediately setting up my Facebook page, soon after that I found Vintage Thymes Monthly Market while also consigning items at another shop.  Now I “play shop” with my two booths while also setting up at a few markets throughout the year.  My goal is to establish an Etsy page in order to share my vintage online.  Buy what you love and enjoy the journey!

Thursday, September 11, 2014

Even, Odd or in the Middle?

We took a  survey yesterday on pricing your items. We were curious to see if you like your numbers even, odd or somewhere in the middle? Click here to read that post on FB.


Monday, August 25, 2014

Vintage Dealer Interview No. 7 Tammie Beckner

Good evening folks. Sorry we missed posting our Sunday Vintage Dealer interview. We are doing things a little bit different now with the interview process. In case you missed our post on Facebook earlier, we are now asking any vintage dealers or shop owners that are interested in participating in the interviews to go to the appropriate category here on the blog. We have posted two sets of questions. One is for dealers and the other one is for shop owners. Simply fill out the questions, cut and paste them back to us in an email to: BoothCrush@gmail.com please see instructions on the bottom of each page.

http://www.boothcrush.blogspot.com/2014/08/antique-shop-owner-interview-questions.html (Shop owner)
http://www.boothcrush.blogspot.com/2014/08/vintage-dealer-interview-questions.html (vintage dealer)

Today, our first response was from Tammie Beckner. She doesn't have a booth name or FB page. But she did share the FB page of the antique mall she is in. Links below. Thank you, Tammy for your info. Enjoy!!

1 . How long have you been a vintage dealer?  It will be two years this coming October.

2. What type of setting are you in?  A mall.

3. How many booths do you have?  Two

4. What size booth/s do you have? Two 10 x 10's

5. What do you sell? Vintage kitchen utensils, dishes, cupboards, cabinets, tables in one booth and primitives in the other.

6. What do you find sells the most in your booth? Painted cabinets/cupboards.

7. What do find sells the least in your booth? China dishes.

8. Why do you think your booth has been successful? I try to offer unique items priced modestly.

9. How often do you refresh your booth? 2-3 times a month

10.  What mistakes have you made and learned from as dealer? Buying things I'm unfamiliar with, which often leads to over paying.

11. What advice do you have for someone just starting out? Start small with items you know the value of. Have seed money to buy inventory in the beginning, if you are doing it right, the hobby/business will soon support itself.

12. What do you think the number one mistake is that unsuccessful dealers make? Not keeping their booth fresh (even if that means rotating items in and out if necessary). Not removing items that don't sell but take up valuable space. Not "working" their booth enough.

13. Do you do this full time? No

14. Do you stick to a specific color scheme with your booth? No, but I do display same color items together.

16. What is an average month in sales for your booth? $600

17. How do you break down and come up with your prices? I usually double my purchase price, with a bit of cushion added for discounts.

18. Where do you find your vintage goods? Auctions, tag/estate sales, other dealers/malls.

19. Do you change your booth out to reflect the season and or holidays? Not the entire booth.

20. Do you swap out stale merchandise or do you reduce it for a fast sale? Both

21. Do you think booth location is important? If there are multiple floors, I feel the main floor is best. Otherwise, a nicely kept, well lit booth is more important than location.

22. Do you use any kind of inventory software for your personal use? No

23. Do you market your booth/s outside social media? No

Do you have any other advice tips or info you would like to add? Keep your booth clean, neat and inviting, allowing for room to walk around without bumping into items. Over head light enhanced with lamps or spot lighting. Have clearly written price tags, that do not fall off.


I don't have a name for my booths.
I'm located in: Norma's Antique Mall
1715 Stone St.
Falls City, NE
402.245.4338
http://normasantiquemall.blogspot.com/
https://www.facebook.com/NormasAntiqueMall


Antique Shop Owner Interview Questions

1. How long have you been a shop owner? 

2. How large is your store? 

3. Do you rent out booth space? If so, how many booths do you have?

4. Before becoming a shop owner, were you a vintage dealer?  

5. What do think your hot ticket items are that customers just can't get enough of?

6. What are your non selling items?

7. Do you think the shabby look is still in or are you seeing less of it now?  

8. Do you sell a lot of industrial chic and salvaged items? 

9. Do you utilize social media? If so, which ones work best for you? 

10. What kind of promotion do you do outside social media?

11. How many days a week are you open?

12. Why do you think your shop has been successful? 

13. What advice would you have for someone going into business for themselves? 

14. What do you think the biggest mistakes are that vendors make? 

15. What do you think the biggest mistakes are that shop owners make? 

16. Have your done any barn sales or Vintage Markets? If so, how many? 

17. What are your new goals for your store this year? 

18. Does your store have any big sales or yearly events? 

19. Does your store offer lay away?

20. If you could change one thing about your store what that be and why?

21 Does your store use a computer or do you hand write tickets? If a computer, what software program do you utilize?

22. How do you keep your dealers happy and motivated?

23. Do you encourage your dealers to promote their booth with signage, business cards, social media etc?

24. Does your store decorate for the holidays/seasons?

25. What are some little extras that your store provides? (Examples: gift wrapping, coffee/snacks, classes, late night shopping)

Do you have anything further you would like to add? Any advice, tips or suggestions?

Please cut and paste your answers to Boothcrush@gmail.com Also include 5-6 pics of your store, address, phone number and any your FB page link or website. 

Vintage Dealer Interview Questions


1. How long have you been a vintage dealer? 

2. What type of setting (Mall/Boutique/Flea Market) are you in? 

3. How many booths do you have? 

4. What size booth/s do you have? 

5. What do you sell? 

6. What do you find sells the most in your booth? 

7. What do find sells the least in your booth? 

8. Why do you think your booth has been successful? 

9. How often do you refresh your booth?

10.  What mistakes have you made and learned from as dealer?

11. What plans do you have to improve your booth for the new year?

12. What advice do you have for someone just starting out?

13. What do you think the number one mistake is that unsuccessful dealers make? 

14. Do you do this for a living, part time or as a hobby? 

15. Do you stick to a specific color scheme with your booth? 

16. Do you utilize social media, and if so, which ones work best? 

17. What is an average month in sales for your booth? 

18. Do you price your items with even, odd or somewhere in the middle? 

19. Where do you find your vintage goods?

20. Do you change your booth out to reflect the seasons and or holidays? 

21. Do you swap out stale merchandise or do you reduce it for a fast sale?

22. Do you think booth location is important? 

23. Do you use any kind of inventory software for your personal use? 

24. Do you market your booth/s outside social media? 

25. Do you sell online too? If so which venue do you use -Ebay/Etsy/Other? 

26. Would you like to own your own store someday? 

27. Do you ever participate in barn sales or pop up sales? If so, how many a year? 

28. Where do you find your vintage items? 

Do you have any other advice tips or info you would like to add? 

Please cut and paste all the questions and return them to Boothcrush@gmail.com also We will also need  the name of your booth, name of your antique store, the address and phone number as well as any links to your FB page or website. Include 5 to 6 images of your booth to be included with blog post. 

Sunday, August 24, 2014

Free Printable

I've seen different variations of this sign over the years while browsing antique shops. Recently, we had a customer ask us about it. She had seen it too, but couldn't remember the wording. So we got to thinking about it and decided it would be fun to make a printable for our vendor readers. Be sure to click on image to enlarge. It is a 5x7, but I think if you set the printer to a 8x10 it will enlarge without pixelation. Wouldn't this look great in a shabby white frame or barn wood prominently displayed in your booth? We like to think of it as a gentle reminder for your customers. :-) Enjoy!!

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Thank You Refunk My Junk!

We are thrilled to be included in the 10 Awesome Resources for Creative Businesses by Refunk My Junk.
Be sure to head on over to her blog and check out the rest of the article. She has a terrific blog and Facebook page. I don't think you will be disappointed.

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Print Your Own Price Tags

Hi Friends, if you haven't already seen our Facebook page, we posted an entire album with printable price tags. Some have info such as a place for your booth #, item # and description and then we did another set that is blank. Please feel free to use them. Visit our FB page here.

Sunday, August 17, 2014

Vintage Dealer Interview No. 6 We Hart Junk

Hi friends. We're back! Did you miss us? We missed you and we sure hated to miss the dealer interview last week. But sometimes you just need to get away and recharge your batteries. But we hope we can make it up to us today, as we have added seven new questions to the end of the interview. And as always we are open for suggestions. So if you have a certain topic you would like addressed please shoot us an e-mail to: boothcrush@gmail.com and we will do our best to get an answer. 

Today, we would like to welcome, Dawn from We Hart Junk. Thanks so much for taking some time to talk to us about your booth. 



1. How long have you been a vintage dealer? I have only been a vintage dealer for about 10 months.  I have always loved vintage and chippy rusty stuff, but an old friend gave me an opportunity to start as a dealer.  She believed in me and I am so thankful for her!  Never underestimate the power of an old friend being your cheerleader!

2. What type of setting are you in? I have sold in occasional sales, once in a flea market setting, and have two "booths" -  The two "booths" I have are shared with another person - we mix our things together.  Its fun and interesting for customers!

3. How many booths do you have? I have 2 booths - one in a gift shop and one in a vintage shop.

4. What size booth/s do you have? My booths are unique in that I share a room that is 8-10 feet with another dealer/friend of mine.  In the second shop, I have "shelves" and some floor space.  Its a unique set up, but it works!

5. What do you sell? I love vintage linens, vintage paper, ladders and crates, vintage kitchen, books, ball jars, any kind of vintage farm stuff, galvinized tubs, pails, drawers and cubbies and toolboxes!!!  And also many repurposed items from farm, kitchen, windows, doors.

6. What do you find sells the most in your booth? In the gift shop, I would say more "shabby chic" and "feminine things" like linens.  In the vintage shop, our repurposed items do the best - magnet boards out of old windows, rusty junk signs, etc.

7. What do find sells the least in your booth? Dishes!!!!

8. Why do you think your booth has been successful? First, because we love what we do and get excited for others when they find the one thing they love, and second, because we are careful how much we spend on our inventory.

9. How often do you refresh your booth? In the gift shop, I have only been averaging once a month, but when I do it more often, my sales are much higher.  In the vintage store, I refresh my shelves and floor space several times a month.

10.  What mistakes have you made and learned from as dealer? I am refreshing more often now - I learned that once a month is no where near enough.  I have also bought things that I LOVE, but that don't sell. (ex: vintage glass insulators), and then they sit and sit........so I have learned to buy things I BOTH love AND that sell!!!

11. What advice do you have for someone just starting out? Start small and buy smart.  If something is going higher than you want to pay, don't be tempted to raise your hand and bid because you are desperate for inventory.  If you starts small, and work on building up inventory by being a smart buyer, you won't overpay for inventory!

12. What do you think the number one mistake is that unsuccessful dealers make? 
I am too new to this business to have seen unsuccessful dealers.  I do know, however, from years of being a customer at stores, that if I walked into a booth and the first few things I see are priced over my budget, I walked out. So perhaps the price range of inventory has something to do with whether you are successful or not.

13. Do you do this full time? I work 4 days a week during the school year and 2 days a week during the summer.  We have a young family, and for now, this is a "side business". Long term, I would love to do it full time.

14. Do you stick to a specific color scheme with your booth? No I don't, but I love white and turquoise so you see a lot of blues and whites in my spaces.

15. Do you utilize social media, and if so, which ones work best? I use facebook as my main social media.  I know that is where most people are looking now so I need to do even more.  I also post on pinterest a little bit,  under We Hart Junk.

16. What is an average month in sales for your booth? Anywhere between 100-500 dollars, after commission.  I share my spaces, so I also share my sales since only half or less of the inventory is mine!  I also have some luck selling on craigslist or right from our We Hart Junk facebook page, so that income is in addition to my booth sales.

17. How do you break down and come up with your prices? I use ebay and etsy a lot to do price checks, and then I usually go with my gut.  I think, "if I were a customer, what would I pay for this"  I am a thrifty shopper, so I price accordingly.  I want my customers to be able to find something they love AND afford it!

18. Where do you find your vintage goods? My husband and I spend a lot of our free time at auctions.  Each auction is a new adventure!!!  We also do garage sales and estate sales.

19. Do you change your booth out to reflect the season and or holidays? Yes! Mainly just spring, fall, and Christmas.  Christmas is my favorite - lots of repurposed Christmas inventory!

20. Do you swap out stale merchandise or do you reduce it for a fast sale? I typically swap it out - although occasionally will mark it down.  I feel that my prices are very reasonable and I have usually done research to know to price fair so swapping out is typically the way I go.

21. Do you think booth location is important? Absolutely! As a long time customer, I was always in a hurry (babies at home or had to go to work), so I usually shopped the outside walls and biggest booths. And if I found something I loved at a booth, I would always go back, especially when in a hurry.  First impressions are so important!

22. Do you use any kind of inventory software for your personal use? We do not.  We started small and by many peoples' standards, We are still small.  We move inventory fast so as of now, its all handwritten, the old fashioned way.

23. Do you market your booth/s outside social media? I always have business cards and talk to people about what we are doing in hopes to spread the word.  Being passionate about your work is the best marketing tool! So does having a fun business name - Our last name is "Hart", so the name "We Hart Junk" usually intrigues people!!!!

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Cheap Shelving Ideas

BOOTH TIP: If you need shelving, but are on a budget...grab some concrete blocks, burlap, twine and pieces of wood. Wrap the burlap and twine around the concrete blocks like this pic. That way those ugly blocks are covered up. Super cheap, quick assembly and shelving problem solved! You could paint the shelves any color or stain them. I've seen the burlap in white or printed patterns. Or you could use other fabrics as well. Saw this idea in antique store this weekend and I think it's a great idea! FYI: for those of you without power tools, any local lumber store will cut wood to your specifications. If any dealer does decide to do this please be sure to share your after pic with us!

Sunday, August 10, 2014

Thank You For 1500 Likes

We can't believe we have 1500 Facebook likes in such a short amount of time. Thank you friends for helping spread the word. If you are new  and stopping by for the first time, come on by and check out our Facebook page. You can also find us on Instagram too. Instagram.com/BoothCrush

Sunday, August 3, 2014

Vintage Dealer Interview No. 5 = The Dove Cote Brocante

Hope everyone is having a great weekend. We had really nice weather here. Just a few rain showers. I didn't get out to do any picking, but hopefully everyone else did. We have been doing "Saturday Junkin" posts over on our Facebook page for those of you that are just stopping by for the first time. Dealers are free to post pics of their weekend treasures. Also, we are trying to get more involved with Instagram. You can find us here

Today, we are interviewing Aspen Robinson from The Dove Cote Brocante. This Mother/Daughter duo have been in the industry for 25 years. All of their contact info is available at the bottom of this post. We are so happy to have them for our interview today. So let's get started. 

1. How long have you been a vintage dealer? We are a mother-daughter team and have been doing this for 25 years.


2. What type of setting are you in? We have 2 shops but do a lot of large shows around the US and began about 3 years ago doing shows on a regular basis.

3. How many booths do you have? We have had 2 spaces in the past until we expanded into our own shop and show circuit.

4. What do you sell? We sell a mix of architectural, garden, French Antiques, and handmade jewelry and home accessories.

5. What do you find sells the most? Architectural and Handmade Items.

6. What do find sells the least? Project pieces that still need work and glass/pottery. 

7. Why do you think your booth has been successful? Our booths are always designed around a whimsical theme mixed with our vintage pieces and we really try to make it only quality items.

8. How often do you refresh your booth? Probably Daily!

9.  What mistakes have you made and learned from as dealer? Don't buy things you wouldn't have in your own home or your on the fence about because your customer will be too and it will make it harder to stage and sell items you don't truly adore.

10. What advice do you have for someone just starting out? Don't try everything, pick what you really love and can stand behind and be selective about working only with people who support your hard work and talent.

11. What do you think the number one mistake is that unsuccessful dealers make? Just because you can buy it cheap doesn't mean it will sell! Vintage items should be TRUE vintage items not yard sale material. 

12. Do you do this full time? Yes 24/7. :)

13. Do you stick to a specific color scheme with your booth? For the most part its muted grays and creams but if we have something really grand we will build a display around it.

14. Do you utilize social media, and if so, which ones work best? Yes, Facebook and Instagram are our faves.

15. What is an average month in sales for your booth? Truly a seasonal question and really is reflective of how much time we are working our social media as they are closely related.

16. How do you break down and come up with your prices? We don't buy an item unless we can at least double our money or sometimes if we get a steal  sometimes it can be more than double depending on the value.

Do you have anything further to add to this interview? You have to truly love doing this because the amount of time spent creating the perfect vignette is astronomical sometimes, the stress over making the perfect setting, finding the perfect pieces and the physical labor are quite the investment. It's truly an occupation of love.

Aspen Robinson
The Dove Cote Brocante
811 Beech St~ 310 Ash St, Fernandina Beach FL 32034
(912)227-0319 ~ (912)227-0597
www.facebook.com/thedovecotebrocante

Thank you again, Aspen. Great interview!!