Would really like to see what others have done to display wares at shows - both indoor and outdoor. Portability, attractiveness, ease of set up and take down are all issues to be considered. What makes a good display?  Please use pictures. I'm about to build something and would like to do it right the first time.

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So if we want to look at pictures of display ideas/options - try adding to the pinterest board I made. If you don't use Pinterest then check it out.

Pinterest is great for sharing ideas and images.


Hi George, When I go to my local craft market, I keep it fairly simple. I have three trestle tables, a couple of other painted wooden boxes to sit on top of the tables to elevate feature pots, fold out market tent, couple of chairs. I could probably go to a little more effort, but its enough to drag all this around, unpack and repack at the end of the day.


I went to East Lansing (Michigan) Art Festival on Sunday May 20.  It is one of the biggest art fairs in Michigan.  I was taking notes on the displays and the shelters that people were using. The weekend before the Memorial Day weekend has notoriously unpredictible weather, so all of the more than 200 exhibitors were ready for wind and rain, but Sunday was cloudless and Hot with temperatures in the upper 80s. So the shelters with add-on awnings were more useful for keeping off the hot sun, though the unvented ones did trap some of the heat. Here are several of the setups I saw.


My set up is like this too- few tables, some wooden crates etc for height - all under a 10x10tent.  Have a smaller card table for wrapping stuff and doing transactions.

Great pictures. I think one of the the things that determines what and how elaborate a set up you have is based on how many hands you have to do it. If you are potter and helper or just potter etc. I am a one woman show with help from hubby loading the car and kids helping me unpack - Less is More. Sometimes I see that too much is overwhelming for a buyer. It's like Costco - give shoppers 2 choices (Brands) and they will buy one of them vs. 10 choices  and they can't decide. Lots on money spent on the study of consumer behavior.

Some very creative and good looking arrangements. Thanks for sharing George.

There were a number of types and manufacturers of vendors shelters at the East Lansing Art festival. I got the names of several and began researching them online. Most are much more easily erected by two people, but a couple of manufacturers offer a utility pole to ease raising a shelter by one person. The following are available or made in the US.

EZ-up is a market tent with an expanding roof truss system and is probably the easiest type to set up, and the least expensive products for professional or commercial use. It also has the fewest accessories, though other shelter manufacturers have made some of their accessories to fit EZ-up models. The Manufacturer's website is http://www.ezup.com/index.html, and you can purchase their products from amazon.com, Sam's Club, Dicks Sporting Goods, or from many online merchants such as http://www.canopycenter.com/ezupcanopies.cfm EZ-up was the originator of the expanding truss shelters, but others such as Undercover are also making similar models. Shelter frames are typically made of aluminum or steel and get heavier and pricier in the professional-commercial models. The shelters may be supplied with or without 4 sidewalls, plain or with center zippers. Apparently most fairs and festivals require shelter materials to be fire resistant, so look for the models that are rated as flame retardant, including any sidewalls. 

The other type of shelters have barrel or dometops with base models starting at around $900 and going up from there, with many accessories that can easily double the price. Again the frames are aluminum or steel. I did note that Creative Energies Light Dome and Finale brands use nylon fittings for corner and other joints with aluminum framing, where the others use metal joints. Other manufacturers include Trimline and Showoff

More information about shelters, and working fairs and festivals can be found at http://craftshowexplosion.com/

I bought the basic 10x10 EZ-Up @ Sears - Great Deal. and paid $119 for it http://www.sears.com/shc/s/p_10153_12605_00622497000P?mv=rr

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