Having our space at the Queen has been quite a ride, and I say this after only ~23 days of the experience. I have learned more in these last 3 weeks than I ever expected to.
On Wednesday, I spent several hours at the store. I dropped some things off at Audrey's from Shane, then I took some things from Audrey to the booth. I spent a lot of time wandering around the store, looking at the other booths with a comparative eye, rather than the eye of a shopper (which was what I was used to doing). I realized quickly that having a space that is attractive is the first step, and the second step is to have a space that has room for you to shop once you enter it. Afterwards, I used my observations and spent some time rearranging our space so that it was more shoppable (to me), and then I took some more pictures. That was awesome, eye-opening, and rewarding, and I like our space more than ever.
On Thursday I had a break through with the advertising/marketing avenues available to vendors from the Queen. They do all kinds of promotion on Facebook, and I finally figured out how to be included. At the same time, I may get The Painted Hammer invited to participate in some things that only active bloggers, Facebookers, Instagrammers, and Pinners get to do. More rewards there, and I like the store that our booth is in even more than before.
Those two things, however, were things that I knew I was after and wanted to make happen. I knew they would work out eventually and that I just had to figure out the pieces to the puzzle.
Saturday led to a new & unexpected discovery that I'm still delighted with. I knew that the Queen would post to Craig's List on behalf of vendors...it makes sense because the more we sell, the more money they make, and I assume part of our rent goes to promotion of not just to store, but to promotion of items in the store. What I didn't know is that there are two ways to get them to do a listing. The first way is to ask, and there are forms for that. The second way is to get something in your booth that they like, promote it through their channels, and once they know about it, they'll list it on Craig's List. Just like that.
I'm enjoying the partnership & services that the Queen provides to their vendors. I'm excited about what we'll be able to do together, and I love that they have our back. I'm off to learn more!
These hand-decorated mini loaf pans are part of our inventory on Etsy.
I got a great deal on a lot of mini loaf pans, and couldn't wait to try something I had learned from Pinterest (it took many failed experiments to get it right, and once I got it to work, it took a couple of tries to get the right colors & patterns). I wanted to decorate them!
So I found some old scrapbooking letter stickers, and applied them to the pan.
My first phrase was inspired by Alice in Wonderland.
Then I dotted around the stickers...
After I removed the stickers, I baked the loaf pans. And ended up with this delightful thing!
Since it worked, I kept going and made two sets of three pans. I love them and think they would be great for either entertaining or gifting!
I'm going to see how these sell. If they do sell, I can make more. If they don't sell, I'll use them for my own personal gifting! I love things like this that are fun to try out AND make me happy no matter the end result!
SOLD!!! One pair of gargoyles, formerly resting on the stone topped table in our booth (vendor code SLAW) at the Queen of Hearts in Alpharetta.
Why the excitement? What's the big deal? That's what these booths are for, to sell things.
Here's the thing: this pair of gargoyles is our very first sale from the booth. We are relieved, excited, delighted, and we are celebrating. Thank you, shopper, we hope you enjoy your purchase. Send your friends!!!
It took a week and a day, but it happened. Now we look forward to more sales. The more we sell, the more new things we can find & make. And that's what generates fun in this adventure.
Starting today, you can visit The Painted Hammer at The Queen of Hearts in Alpharetta! We are vendor code SLAW, located in the store on the S. Battery St aisle, and we are so very excited.
Side note: Every vendor at The Queen chooses a vendor code when they start their booth. SLAW is a clever combination of our co-founders' initials, Shane Levin and Audrey Wood.
Mrs. Paint (Audrey Wood) and Mr. Hammer (her brother, Shane Levin) took some shelving, some tools, and some goodies to sell up to the booth last night during The Queen's extended Thursday hours.
But don't worry, this is just a teaser inventory so that shoppers can see we're moving in. Over the next couple of days and beyond, this booth will evolve into the vision that Audrey & Shane share. I'm probably the most anxious and excited to see what the booth will look like then!
Come see us! Until you can make it out, you can get updates on Facebook or our web page dedicated to our efforts at the Queen.
I ordered a set of very simple, pre-designed business cards to use as we ramp up. I felt like we should have something that we can give out or let shoppers take home with them. So I made a card that is specifically for our Queen of Hearts booth, and that only has contact information for Audrey. I decided this because Audrey is the center of this universe. She got the booth, and she is designing the booth, stocking the booth, and "ordering" additional items from Shane. At this point in the process, I'd be afraid that if Shane or I got a call or an email for The Painted Hammer we would stammer something unintelligible and then just get Audrey to talk to them!
I ordered the cards from Vistaprint, using their fantastic deal (250 cards for $10). It was very easy to use. I chose a pre-designed layout and a stock image for this first batch, and then typed my words in the boxes on the screen. Do you know what the hardest part was? Not giving in to Vistaprint's very good upsell marketing. As you go through the process, they say things like "Nice business cards, do you need return address labels?" and then they show you what matching business cards would look like. Then they say "Nice business cards, do you need a stamp?", and so on. I resisted, this time, but I do expect to order more cards from them next time, with customized images and logos, and I do not expect to be as strong this next time.
Happy Boxing day, friends!
Wow! Something very cool has happened. Audrey has gotten a booth at the Alpharetta Queen of Hearts, an antiques and interiors retail location. It's an awesome store, and we're going to be part of it after the first of the year!
Shane and her have become very busy preparing to get the booth stocked up with stuff that reflects the brand they are building, so stay tuned for more!