The new storefront

A big part of my objective in doing the store make over was to make sure our store was ‘more noticeable’ when you looked down the row of doors and windows in the strip mall.  All too often I would watch customers go from the gift  store on one side of us to the gift store on the other side of us, but bypass our store.  Now maybe the primitive folk art look just wasn’t ‘their thing’ . . . so, I tested that theory:

When I saw this happen, I’d go and prop our door open so that when they came out of the neighboring store they’d be sure to notice that we were indeed another store there in the middle.  More often than not, that person WOULD come into our store and comment that they had not realized we were here!  They thought we were part of one of the other stores?!?!?

I guess probably because the other two stores each have TWO doors (only one of which allows access) and they just thought my door was another ‘dud’.  Plus the way the daylight hits the storefront windows, you could never really see INTO the stores.   And, all three of us stores would put product our in front. 

The product out in front of the store worked well for me when I was the only store there.  But once everyone else started doing it, I guess the three storefronts just all ‘blended together’.    So, I determined to no longer out product out in front of the store when we re-opened, but still wanted to dress it up a little.

Hence my ‘mission’ to come up with a way to ‘differentiate’ our store from the two on either side.  My first step was to cover the windows.   (the papered up door was just while we were closed)


 (how we did this window treatment in a previous post) Everyone thought I was crazy.  People LOVE to look in store windows.  But you could never really SEE what I had in the windows because of the glare!  AND I hardly ever sold anything that I had displayed in the windows!  It just sat there and faded in the light until I changed out the display.  And it was very hard to see the product displayed near the windows inside the store because of the glare.

I LOVE how the new window inserts made the store ‘feel’ once you walked inside.  LOVE the additional display space it gave me inside the store.  I was worried that covering the windows might make it too dark inside, but it hasn’t at all.  Still get lots of light from above the ‘fenceboard shutters’.

Here’s what I came up with for the new sign, and Michael (smiling even!) giving it a quick coat of additional varnish after he hung it.  We left the old sign up and made this one to fit right over it.  No sense in taking one down, filling holes and then making MORE holes!

But I still had that UGLY AREA below the outside of storefront windows to contend with.  Originally I had made some little primitive picket fence sections to pop in there to disguise it a bit.  But when the neighboring store decided they should do fence too, I took mine out.  I just HAVE to be different!

I had Michael measure and cut some pieces of 1/8″ luan plywood to fit inside the sections below the windows so I could paint them and cover up that ugliness.  My first thought was to paint them the same blue color as I was doing the signage in.  But decided on something more sublte and did a ‘faux stone’ look.   Here’s what I came up with:

The 2′ barn stars are hung on the outside of the windows with suction cup hooks.  figure I’ll change those out seasonally.   Three pretty fall wreaths next???

And a closer look:

Can’t wait till my wave Petunias grow more and are spilling over the sides of the pots!

(how I painted the faux stone coming up in a later entry)

So?????? Does the new storefront stand apart better than before????

Cottage chaos

That’s what I’m calling the new look.  At the moment anyhow!

I hardly even know where to begin?!?!?!  Now that the inserts are in the front windows, I suppose I’ll start there, and work my way back