Love is an Upcycled Door!

"Okay... can I just say something crazy??!!
All my life has been a series of doors in my face, 

and then suddenly I realized I could use them to create displays...

Love is an upcycled do-o-or..."

oh, wait, that's not exactly how Princess Anna sings it, is it?! ;) wink.

For over two decades,
I've been teachin' and preachin' that using vintage and re-claimed materials
is just a SMART way to 'do' displays - it's cheaper, it's greener, 
and it's far more interesting than using store-bought fixtures and props!
I love finding great examples of that philosophy to share with you...
The woman in the photo above is Alisun, of BeatriceHoliday.
Alisun is a jewelry designer who creates amazing pieces from recycled bike chains!
I met her on Sunday, when I attended a new vintage market in my area: Trading Post 1908.

I was VERY impressed with the simple, creative, and effective way Alisun displayed her products:
She's used reclaimed materials to create fixtures and props,
like the table made from a solid wood vintage door and four screw-in plumbing pipe legs.
Boxes of various sizes, made from pallet wood, provide elevation for mannequins and displays.
And jewelry forms & mannequins re-covered with linen fabric.

Another solid wood vintage door hangs horizontally from her pop-up tent,
with old nails providing a way to hang multiples of products.

The whole effect is very product-focused because of the clean color palette and spacious layout...
it makes her dark-tone jewelry stand out in contrast to the pale backgrounds.
 It ALSO breaks down and packs flat for transport - a BIG plus for vendors at shows!
She was a doll to chat with, 
and I appreciate her allowing me to photograph her booth to share it with you. 
Thanks, Alisun!

I've used vintage doors in MANY ways over the years...
you can see a few of them on my DIY home decor blog here and here
and in one of the seasonal stores I created here. go create some aDOORable displays!
(I recommend having chocolate fondue and sandwiches, too!)

When It Finally SINKs In...

Here on my retail design blog, and also over on my DIY decor blog HOMEWARDfound
my goal is to provide you with as many ORIGINAL ideas 
and as much seasonal inspiration as I possibly can. I'll go to [almost] any lengths to do that.
Heck, I'll even throw in the kitchen sink!
 In my 40+ years of designing and styling home decor and retail displays,
I've come up with some whopper ideas.
But THIS one is one of my faves - and it was a mistake.
uh huh. a total fluke. great story, too.

But you don't want the story, you want PICTURES!
so, here ya' go:
BRILLIANT IDEA, right?!!!!!
thank you. thank you very much.
[it's really not brilliant... scroll down to the end of the post and read the story!]

click on the 'Read More' link on the left for MORE ideas!

Smells Like Success!

I had the good fortune to take a trip to Wisconsin last week for my niece's wedding...
 and after the hullaballoo of the nuptials, the mother of the bride REALLY needed a break!
So, my Mom and I bundled my sister into the rental car and headed north
to Door County, located on a peninsula in Lake Michigan.

It was a truly relaxing and fun trip, at just the right time for all three of us.
We saw some gorgeous landscapes - even some fall leaves! - and did some very 'tourist-y' things.
One day, we took a ferry to Washington Island at the northernmost end of Door County, 
then hopped on the little red 'Cherry Train' tram for an island tour.

And THAT is how we came to arrive at a place that made my JAW DROP....

 Fragrant Isle Lavender Farm is the creation of a team of visionaries - Martine, Edgar, and Helene.
Martine's dream of re-creating the beauty of her French homeland here on the island was the guide,
and she has NAILED it, folks....

Click 'Read More' to see some great examples of brand-centric design and merchandising!