Saturday, July 24, 2010

New Hat Rack and the Challenge of Displays

The other day I came across this lovely metal pie rack in a consignment store. My intention is to have circular glass shelves made for it to replace the white foamboard ones I cut. It really highlights my hats and holds more than my old rack did in a smaller space. And it fits in my station wagon for when I do shows. What fun!

I have always wanted to have a little boutique where I can display and sell my handmade crafts and fine art. Unfortunately, the cost of renting a shop in the nearby tourist town of Woodstock is prohibitive. Instead, I show my work in galleries, bookstores, and gift shops - for a fee. For the past two years, however, I have begun to display more work here in my home (my Itty Bitty Art Show.) I've found that many people contact me personally and want to come see my studio or ask if I can sell them something directly. This year I also was part of the Vermont Craft Council's "Open Studio Weekend," which was very successful. So I've decided to create a small boutique of sorts in my living room - not open to the public except perhaps on special weekends when I have a show.

In attempting to display my work, I've discovered new challenges. It's quite fun, really, to look for things which can be used as display. I'm having more difficulty designing what I want to build as a wall display. (Currently I have a mishmash of small tables and chests to hold my card racks, etc. This looks a bit messy and unprofessional, so I'm planning something that will cover the wall. )

Lighting, display furniture, signs, color, grouping... are all issues to consider.
The main issue for me is how to integrate a display of my work into my living room. I have no intention of completely turning my house into a gallery - at least not now. It will be an ongoing project but I hope to have something much nicer set up by the time my Snowflake Party rolls around in December. If I'm really ambitious, I could try for foliage season in the fall, when tens of thousands of "leaf peepers" swarm the area.


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