HD Boutique – Part One
Garay Artisans took a booth again at the HD Boutique Show this past September. HD Boutique is a conference for interior designers in the hospitality industry. It’s a terrific show for those of us heavily involved in the commercial side of the decorative arts. I knew that on top of our faux finishing portfolio, we were going to strongly promote our antique ornamental mirror services so it was imperative that we pick a theme. It came down to Snow White (“Mirror, Mirror on the Walls” — actually I was going to call it Mirror Mirror & the Walls or “Brewing Up Magical Finishes That Will Leave Your Clients Enchanted”) or Alice in Wonderland (“Journey Through the Looking Glass”). The team took a vote and Alice it was.
The drawing above, representing our back wall, started the whole shebang. It was drawn up by my brother Jason and fellow artisan, Monica Zeuli, while at a bar enjoying live music. (Seriously. They actually called me, too. Excitedly. That’s commitment, folks.) Then it was taken by our web girl, Karen Donnelly, and drawn out graphically (below). We now had a visual to use as a jumping off point.
We decided that we were going to build the back panel and cut out the “frames” for the live antique mirrors to go up against. We also ordered the lettering from Modello and bought checkerboard flooring instead of having regular carpet. The purchases continued with shelving and we luckily had furniture loaned to us by Morris & Kalm, a staging company we work with. (While touring their super-large storage facility, we came across a White Rabbit figurine. Kismet.) Here’s some during pics with Jason & Monica.
Since we’ve done many trade shows and have learned never to leave anything to chance, we did a run-through and set up the entire booth in part of our warehouse space within a taped out 10′ x 10′ space. I highly suggest you do this if setting up for a conference — it outlined many of the things we needed to fix and be prepared for. We then took it all apart and loaded our van. Here’s a pic while we were setting it up.
Here’s some pics of us before the show. That’s my hubby, Chris, putting up the brackets for the computer screens that would be showing a slideshow of our work. They were going on both ends of the booth. It did take a village putting this together. A fun part? Melanie Royals had the Modello Designs booth right across the aisle from us!
Below, the final shots of our space. Are you surprised to see Alice there? Actually, that’s Karen, our webgirl, and since her middle name is Alicia, that’s what her badge said. She was pitch-perfect — and I can’t tell you how much of a popular draw she was. Monica and I went dressed as the Tweedle Divas. We both had the same outfit on during the show — striped top, black pants, colored scarf.
It was two-day show and it took weeks to prepare for — but we can count it as a definite success. I hope this inspires you to dream up your own trade show booth! We do have a Part Two coming next week with some of the marketing stuff we did beforehand to help ensure success. I think you’ll like it…