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Metal Grid Shelves Vs Wood Shelves


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#1 pottersc555

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Posted 30 July 2014 - 11:12 AM

curious to get thoughts on metal grid system shelves vs wood shelves? i am new to selling at local markets and have been slowly changing my shelf system to what works best for me.  ever so slowly getting there. 

i am currently using a ladder shelf and a couple of metal shelves i found.  but as i get more and more inventory i am seeing how this will not work.  if i got another ladder shelf my space will be limited in my jeep-i would love to go to a collapsible shelving system so that i can use the extra space to fill with more product.

i was looking thru past threads and seeing lots of wood shelves. then i was perusing pinterest and came across metal grid shelves.  i am fighting space in my jeep vs my love for the look and feel of wood.  i have a good portion of light functional pieces so the grid system could work nicely in the local markets i have been doing. and i could get twice the space for product vs any shelving unit i purchased or built.

but i am wondering if there is a reason i typically only see the more organic wood shelves.

anyone had luck with metal grid system?

much thanks--love being able to pick the brains of those who have "been there, done that."

 



#2 GEP

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Posted 30 July 2014 - 11:41 AM

Can you post some photos of the metal shelves?

You are correct that you need to work within the confines of your car space. If wood shelving means you can't bring enough pots, then it's a nonstarter of an issue.
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#3 JBaymore

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Posted 30 July 2014 - 01:36 PM

Look up info on "merchandising" and "market positioning".

 

To be truly effective, your display units need to fit your work, and all of that (work and display) needs to fit the audience you are targeting. 

 

You might have dfifferent displays / setus for different types of work and venues you hit.

 

Merchandising and market positionsing.............

 

Example....... a sort of "generic" looking basic berry bowl on a white pedestal with a spotlight at a farmer's market is likely not going to be as effective as a berry bowl with a few berries in it sitting on an old repurposed wooden table set up much like it might be in someone's house.

 

Example... if your work is high end........ use "expensive" looking surfaces to display....... natural pine is bad....... finished oak is good.  Burlap or canvas is bad............ glass or finished metal is good.

 

And so on.

 

best,

 

................john


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#4 JLowes

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Posted 30 July 2014 - 02:14 PM

Hey there pottersc555,

 

I have made a couple of sets of wood shelves in my time of selling at art fair type venues.  The first, ladder style, I used about three or four times before I abandoned them and made a new design.  The design was simple My second set up as an "L" shape and used three folding ladders (like a "V", as end and angle towers) and wood shelves, and the towers were connected by the shelves and had wood x-bracing for rigidity, and held together by many quick fit fasteners.  My day job is engineering related and I like working with wood.   After many shows packing out last, I decided to take another approach.

 

I now have Origami brand shelves (http://www.origamira.../product_R5.asp); they come in several sizes, but I have three of the R5 and one R4 so I can display taller items.  I set them up in my 10 x 10 tent in a separated vee with an opening  in the center so I can have some room behind them for the backroom.

 

These shelves regularly go "on sale" at Amazon, HSN, Northern Tool, and elsewhere, so a good eye can get them at less than the retail price.  They fold up pretty thin, and everything (except the liner) is self contained in a shelf unit.

 

John



#5 JLowes

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Posted 30 July 2014 - 02:26 PM

Yeah, what John Baymore said...but, I still value quick set up and breakdown for outside venues.  I can change what is on the horizontal part to complement the venue and attendance.

 

One thing I did notice when I had my #2 set of shelves was people asking if I made them.  Don't know if that was good or bad though.

 

John



#6 pottersc555

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Posted 30 July 2014 - 08:57 PM

glad to hear the immediate response was not "NO!!" as someone who is just starting---and doing this weekly by myself--i am constantly finding ways to make setup and teardown more efficient.  i really like that shelves can be moved and changed for various heights and needs for different venues. 

these origamirack shelves are brilliant!! good to know about the different setups for different venues.  right now i am doing weekly farmers markets so can keep it fairly organic and low key....hence the wood. 

 

the example i saw is someone's actual booth. not sure if the link will work but here it is.  it is the first one on the left.

 

https://www.google.c...om%2F;3072;2304

 

lots of things i love about it but so different from the typical organic material i usually use. 

appreciate the feedback.  will def research "merchandising" and "market positioning"



#7 GEP

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Posted 31 July 2014 - 08:58 AM

I am definitely in favor of "quick setup" and "lightweight" but I think the grid pattern is somewhat busy and distracting. My advice is to make the backdrops solid ... i.e. if your grids are white, hang a white fabric panel behind them to make a solid white backdrop.

But I encourage you to keep thinking along the lines of "how do I make this easier and faster" because too many aspiring festival artists take the opposite approach, trying to do too much, and burden themselves with overly cumbersome displays.

Here's an anecdote ... I was next to an artist who was doing her first large show. Afterwards I packed down all of my display into a tidy pile of boxes.
"Where did your walls go?" she asked.
"They're just fabric. They are all in that box."
"Well I used hard walls for my display" she bragged.
Then I noticed that I was packing my things into my car, and she was just sitting there next to her car.
"I have to wait for my friend to get here with her car, because this doesn't all fit in one car."
Five minutes later I was driving away, and she was still staring at her cell phone. This is a show that ended at 9pm, so it was well past 10pm. I have not seen this person at any shows since.
Mea Rhee
Good Elephant Pottery
http://www.goodelephant.com

#8 Diesel Clay

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Posted 31 July 2014 - 12:10 PM

I would think that paper or fabric backing so would be preferable to solid "walls". You can change them up easily, and I think they'd be faster to take down if it's windy. (Kiting ceramics display=bad.)

#9 TwinRocks

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Posted 31 July 2014 - 05:00 PM

I've used grid wall for over a decade to display clothing and toys at shows, but I haven't tried to sell ceramics yet.

There are some disadvantages to the grid wall, but I am sure there are for other types of shelving. The panels of grid wall can be fastened with small clips that screw together (made especially for the purpose) but that tends to be fiddly and tedious. The panels are a bit heavy, and once you have enough for a booth plus brackets and shelves it ends up equalling a lot of space and weight. They are terrible on uneven ground. People have a tendency to assume they are solid and lean on them! You have to brace them carefully and watch your weight distribution or they can swing or fall very easily. They leg stands you can put in them tend to trip people, but without you need extra panels to create support pillars. The powder coating is easily damaged while moving them around. They can be torqued out of shape and then they are pretty useless. I got most of mine second hand and have used them hard. They worked for what I was doing but look awful now. Hanging a drape behind does improve the appearance. It's also really easy to pinch or break a finger while moving more than one panel at a time.

I don't think they would be my top choice for ceramics, the amount of weight involved would be difficult to keep steady IMO. I'll likely end up trying it, because I have enough to build a twenty by ten booth, but there is likely better options to invest in for this purpose.

#10 Mark C.

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Posted 01 August 2014 - 12:37 AM

I'm not a fan of grid wall for ceramics-to busy-to heavy and to easy to  beat up.

Just my 2 cents

Covered surfaces or wood is best for pots I feel-this is a personal issue

 wood glass or metal

Metal for me is at the bottom. of the list for pots. Now brused aluminum would be cool.

Mark


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#11 SmartsyArtsy

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Posted 25 August 2014 - 08:32 PM

Also consider wall paper for backdrops. If you use one that is sturdy enough, it will roll up nicely for transport-- no fabric wrinkles! I use grasscloth and it is the perfect "feel" for my botanical theme. It covers the pegboard that my tiles hang on.






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