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Mark C.

Christmas Pottery Booth

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Well this months Pottery sale went really smooth except thieves hit my display on the 21st.

The booth is connected to the wall and locks up really well with doors that cover the 16 feet of display  but the rack in photo on left is left outside every night. This year I showed up on Sat morning to find it gone.

I have never locked it up as it comes apart and is made to be flat.Running a cable lock thru it would only hold the uprights.

I should have used a beater rack as I have a few from earlier in career.

I had matched pair  of these racks made by a really good friend who passed away last year of cancer. I always think of him while using his displays.

I had another in van so it was a small setback. Seems like they really needed some shelving before xmas. Next year I will use a rack I could care less about.

I have used a rack like this in this shopping center for 39 years with zero issues.The times that are a changing -I think Dylan said that.

In terms of sales the 15 days was about the same as last year which was also a 15 day run. A solid ending to my retail  own season. Now its stock up my outlets and wait for the December checks to roll in. Paperwork time soon-oh boy.

 

 

IMG_2562.jpg

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A shame there are such cruddy people running around - such a nasty thing to do.  It's a wonderful display, and so much great  stuff! Love the fish-I remember seeing  pics of fish when you were making some, a long time ago.

 

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are the big, flat panels on the left the doors that cover the other racks?    you really do have the best setup, mark.  all that planning and work really paid off in such a well built display.

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Oldladydoors.jpg.b33c01b355b0ebe85b9cc0cd8babb5ce.jpg

Yes those are the doors this is how it looks when I walk away-7  key hinge locks total on the doors. They also are splined to lock together in middle seem. and have to floor latches that catch the metal edge on bottom of doors. This allows them to be dragged around a little without wear on bottoms .

I started doing this in 1979 at this center in my closest small town of 15k. I was driving to San Francisco In the late 70's doing Xmas shows every weekend  leaving my inventory down there until the next weekend (the shows where early ones called Harvest Festivals and I got into them early when they just started) and decided to try something local and save all the driving and be able to sell more all week not juts weekends . We could sell less but make more as expenses where so much less.It worked well. It was not always smooth with corporations trying to take your profits but it worked out well for me now.My booth used to cost $600  for a few weeks now it $200 for whatever I want to run it to which is still about 12-15 days depending on how many weekends before xmas occur.

The lockable section is 16 feet log and about 7+ feet tall. I can just reach the upper locks. I can open the doors myself but I cannot close them as someone needs to guide the interlocking spline between door sections as I shove it closed.These door where at one time pretty heavy as they are two panels per door and hinged. A few years ago I remade them from thinner lighter specialty plywood that also thinner than 1/2 inch. Still very strong.The holes are for my fingers to open.I made this booth for this shopping center location only about 15-20 years ago. I store it all year just for this one sale that runs two weeks just before Christmas.It all fits flat in a very small shed.I run my fish on pro panels behind the pottery racks. The light poles plug into holders and live inside the lockable both at night. The rack on left stays out and next year will be locked up. We unload all the pottery from this rack onto the other two racks to close and lock up the whole booth.All the lights are on one switch next to sales chair. I can close it in 10 minutes and open in about 15. I have a propane heater if it gets cold for my sales staff which has worked for me for decades .The pet store supplies power for my lights-we get along very well.Its local business like me. The nearby postal/boxing shipping business uses my pottery in their ads as well so we all help one another. You can buy a pot and one business away they can pack and ship it for you. I run  the booth about 6 hours each day now after years of experimenting with hours. After 39 years in this center I know what works best for sales. I run 6 signs in town during sale but Everyone knows I'm there every year after all the years . I run a small add in local weekly paper now as well. Doing the same thing every year really helps builds a customer base.

Heres the booth all locked up and you can see its a pet store by the windows. I have been in front of 5 drugs stores  over my 39 years (all same location) as they changed hands from Value Giant to  Payless then Longs  and then Rite Aid and now its CVS and then moved to in front of Safeway next door for 5 years on a managers request as he sees my customers as an asset and now the past 10 in front of this pet store as I got fed up with corporate changes and turn over and high rents. Now its very reasonable dealing with shopping center owner. Its a flat fee that I negotiated  and I specify my dates as much or as little as i want to be there in Dec. My limit now is about two weeks before I'm toast.

I started selling pottery in this shopping center when I was 26 years old-still there 39 years later.Never had a loss  here so really I'm ahead.

 

Edited by Mark C.

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Really sorry to hear about the loss, Mark. Fortunately, the thief didn't have the time or the tools to tear apart the big cabinet. Glad to hear that you had a good Christmas sale and another successful year.

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The set up and the pots look great.

Sorry about the theft. Around here as the holiday season began, I started hearing warnings about "porch piracy," the practice of stealing parcels off of front porches.

As I was expecting a new laptop to arrive yesterday to replace the ten year old one I am typing on right now, I found myself peeking continuously at my porch. It arrived safely and I was glad to find my signature was required.

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Just a thought ... I once "lost" a rack in the mall and a really expensive moving dolly at a show.   The rack was "found" in a store and the dolly "found" in another vendors booth.  Both excuses "Oh I thought you were throwing it away".   This past Canton flea market we had a chair in front of the booth .. someone got it.    I'll make a scoop around booths in the spring and see if it turns up ....  (I'll take a video if I find it lol)

So check in other stores? 

Sorry for your loss.

Edited by DirtRoads

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That's awful. People can be terrible. I've never lost a whole rack, but I did leave a bowl of candy out on the front step one Halloween, and when I got home someone had taken the bowl, too. Not something I expected in our neighborhood.

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