Happy New Year

I can’t believe how quickly this time has gone by.

If you scroll way down, you’ll see that it’s been several months since we started accepting art on consignment for the opening of our new shop.  It’s been a lot of work and we have, according to the reports of the Marketplace of the Americas management team and many of our visitors, “The most interesting and attractive shop in the place”.

That is precisely due to the wonderful artwork which has filled our shop from the brilliant artists who have joined us.

To re-cap:  We are in a mall which sat empty for several years, was bought by some investors from Florida and has been re-vamped, remodeled and updated to become a unique shopping experience in Columbus Ohio.  Having a Grand Opening on Halloween weekend, we have seen the numbers coming through the doors increase, slowly but surely, as people realize we are here and decide to come see what we’re all about.  People take their sweet time in making changes, but we feel now, that we are becoming a shopping destination in earnest.  We had a record 3,000+ people through the mall doors this past Sunday.

Fair Wind Studio sales, thus far, have not come close to paying expenses, but we are hanging on and footing the bills until the shop begins to at least pay its rent!  With that in mind, we moved our shop up to a highly visible, heavily traveled spot in the “crossroads” just inside the entrance area, where people pause and decide which way to go.  It’s right by the beautiful Carousel where the children come to take a ride.  We saw our foot traffic increase ten times on this last weekend, our first weekend in the new location.  We are only open Friday evenings, Saturdays and Sundays, so it’s a weekend business.

I’ll be posting new photos of our shop after the floor paint dries (we did that today) and I think you’ll see a huge difference in the face we present to the public.  Unlike our old space, we have an increase in size,  a nice glassed-in display area and two doors instead of one.

Our best-sellers so far have been blank cards made from original artwork, the more reasonably priced limited edition prints, wearable art accessories ($20-$30 range) and ceramics.  I think this may reflect holiday shopping trends, but we will look at it again after some time goes by.  Lookers appear to be very interested in wearable art and jewelry and the lower priced, small  original paintings, as they begin to shop for themselves, rather than for gifting.

We will be looking for more of the smaller pieces for our “bread and butter” sales, as people are more often buying ‘under $20’ items than $300 items.  For those, we wait for just the right person to come along. 

The idea of “All Original Art All The Time” is a big draw for people and I feel we are ‘educating’ the average mall browsers to realize what wonderful things are being produced by “real people”.  This, too, takes time.

So… if you are one of the artists currently consigning with us and would like to add to your inventory, this might give you some guidelines to consider.  We don’t want the market to dictate the art — JUST THE OPPOSITE — but we DO want to be able to pay the rent!

New artists, please see the guidelines for consignment which can be reached through the tabs, above.  If you are interested, I will send you a printable copy of the consignment agreement, via your email.  Please feel free to contact me at any time.  Questions are most welcome.

Would love to hear your feedback on this post.  I’ll update with photos in the next few days.



2 responses to “Happy New Year

  1. Are you still looking for art for you store? I’d love to learn more bout this if you are.

    Jan Freeman

  2. Nancypants, that is great to hear about your new location.

    I will let you in on a little retail secret since you have the merry go round for the kiddies outside your door you need a “kid catcher” display right inside your door. Not so deep into the store that they cannot see it, but enough inside that the Mom or Dad has to follow them in. They will take a minute to look around. It can be as simple as a table for them to color on covered with freezer paper and with crayons, maybe some balloons, too.
    Something that keeps them occupied while they can take a peek. It always worked for me! :O)

    You might also, if you have a friend that paints kids faces, do that one weekend perhpas for a donation to the local children’s hospital or the local food bank. Or maybe a local clown to make some balloon animals?

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