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Trunk show


#1

I was approached by a store owner at a recent show that they would
like to represent my work in their shop. They offered to purchase
$500 if I would consign $500. They also do trunk shows in which they
would like me to participate–this sounds good to me. They did not
mention if any part of the show goes to them. Does anyone have any
advice on how this is handled? Also, any tips on how you do a trunk
show would be greatly appreciated. Thanks in advance for your help.


#2
I was approached by a store owner at a recent show that they would
like to represent my work in their shop.  They offered to purchase
$500 if I would consign $500.  They also do trunk shows in which
they would like me to participate--this sounds good to me.  They
did not mention if any part of the show goes to them.  Does anyone
have any advice on how this is handled?  Also, any tips on how you
do a trunk show would be greatly appreciated.  Thanks in advance
for your help. Madleine, 

A trunk show usually is done on regular terms, so you would get the
wholesale price and they would get the retail portion. There are
always details to work out, for example – What happens if someone
wants something on layaway? Will you be paid before you leave or in
30 days? Also, be aware that trunk shows are best for those artists
who already have a following at the store. If I was only getting
wholesale and had to pay out of pocket travel, lodging and meals, I
would be wary of doing a trunk show. IMO, trunk shows, like
consignment, is used best to support an already existing client.

As far as the consignment goes, don’t let the $500 purchase/$500
consignment lull you into a false sense of security, especially if
you don’t normally work under these arrangements. Do some research
on the store you are considering. Good luck,

Larry


#3

I would like to learn about trunk shows. It appears that in this
economy no one wants to pay cash upfront. Bouthiques offer
consignment (and we learned a lot from experiences of many
orchidians). How about a trunk show? Who is responsible for
advertisement? Who sets retail price? How it is split? Who pays for
what? Is it OK for the artist to have her business cards there?
Any will be appreciated. Evelina


#4

At the two trunk shows I have done the shop was supposed to do
publicity, based on a flyer I created and gave to them. Note the
"supposed". They handed out a few flyers to customers, but that was
it. No ads at all - not good!!! They kept 50% of sales, so
essentially I got wholesale price. I won’t do that again, as I set
up, manned the show for the day, initiated the sales, handled
customers, and broke down. For wholesale pricing that is way too
much work on my part! Next time I do a trunk show I will have a
written contract (I know, I know - should have done so the first two
times!) specifying how much publicity the shop will do, what I will
do, and who handles sales tax, plus the percentage. I think I will
do a sliding scale percentage, where they get closer to the 50% take
if they bring in a higher volume of sales. This I hope will act as
incentive to them to get the customers out!

On another note, I am also initiating another new sales venue this
year. I am approaching school pto’s about doing jewelry sales as
fundraisers. They publicize, provide space and tables/chairs, bring
out the customers, and I set up, sell, break down. We split the
profits. Again, I’m going to do a sliding scale of some sort, so
that the higher the sales the more they get, but with a minimum that
I get to be sure I at least cover time and travel costs.

So far I am getting a lot of interest, but have not actually done
one. I have one tentatively booked for the end of September, and one
in December. Will let everyone know how it goes after the first one.

My theory is that they will have incentive to turn folks out to buy,
folks will buy more to support their cause, and I am only tied up for
a night. Will see if it works!

Beth in SC


#5

That sounds like the situation we had when I used to work for a
travelling remount operation. The store manager & employees were
supposed to be priming the pump for several weeks ahead of a show,
with a guideline we provided. If they properly hyped the show, it
would do well. Most often, though, the most they would do was put up
a poster in the opening of the shop, perhaps a few countertop cards.
When staff properly works these events, we usually have a days worth
of buyers, most of whom walk in 90% certain. Our salesman would only
need to sell them on the ‘what’ part, not sell them cold.

The reality was most store provided little prep work, even littler
advertising, very little support during the day. Often the sales
staff would see it as a paid day off, as they would stand back and
watch us rather than actively try to sell. They would, on occasion,
actually provide some decoration and/or refreshments on the day
itself. I doubt there was usually more than $200 or so spent by the
store to promote these events. For our part, we were bringing all the
inventory (expensive proposition there, can’t call Stuller for
overnite when it is a 1 day show), 2 people, travel expenses, etc.
Obviously the burden of expense was mostly ours. For this, they
still kept 50%. Not a fair balance in my eyes, but I was on salary,
so it didn’t concern me that much. Jim