On Sunday July 19th, 2020 I held my first outdoor pop up shop and I have to say, it went pretty well! I would like to thank those who attended with all of my heart and soul. I'm sure you don't really know how much it means to me that you actually took the time out of your busy life to support my little shop, but I want to express to you that it means the WORLD to me.
I honestly didn't do much advertising. The only advertising I did was to send an e mail to everyone on my e mail list which included a link that directed them to my last blog post if they wanted find out more about what the heck I was inviting them to. I also made a Facebook public event invitation. I posted a couple of times reminding people about the pop up shop on Instagram and Facebook, but that was really the extent of it. I didn't pay for any advertising. I currently do not have the funds for that. I feel that I could have done much better with advertising, but to be honest, I was a little scared to do that! This was my first time hosting something like this and I guess I was hoping for a soft opening. And that's exactly what I got. Although I made my minimum sales goal, it was not crazy busy with customers lined up my driveway by any means, and I welcomed that. It was also a very hot day. 88 degrees in the shade! Thank goodness we had the cloud cover which was helpful. I also had two oscillating fans blowing and a cooler filled with cold bottled water and seltzer that was free for the taking for all of my customers. I also made sure to have plenty of hand sanitizer on hand and masks available for purchase. It was difficult to keep a mask on but most everyone did, and if they didn't, they were happy to stay 6 ft away from other shoppers which was easy to do. Another reason why I am glad it wasn't crazy busy was for physical distancing purposes.
Below are some photos of my set up!
Upon entry and exiting, I suggested using hand sanitizer.
I thought these Erin Flett Tote Bags looked perfect with a little Maine Square hair tie wrapped around the handle. You never know when you are going to need a hair tie! They are great for so many reasons. Those super cool Maine hats are by Gracie Designs. I was also thrilled to be able to carry LiveME t-shirts! Unfortunately I didn't get a better photo of the women's LoveME version, but they are available at my online store and you can see them better by clicking HERE.
On the dress form is an apron with a matching hair tie being used as a scarf, and an elephant print chinoiserie tote bag all made by myself here at The Maine Square! On the shelves are gorgeous sun hats, zipper clutches, lunch bags, and a pillow created by Erin Flett. Candles on the bottom shelf are by Seawicks Candle Company. They smell so good!
The gorgeous pillows in the yellow chair and the tote bag on the dress form are by Erin Flett. I did have a hydrangea print apron and a matching scarf by The Maine Square on the dress form earlier, but it sold before I could take this photo! I did my best to cover her up with the Erin Flett Garden Tote Bag after that...
What looks like a tapestry hanging in the back is actually a gorgeous tea towel by Erin Flett! I love her work and I am not surprised that my customers did too!
On these shelves I laid out table linens and tea towels by Erin Flett, more candles by Seawicks Candle Co., table linens and balsam pine scented sachets by The Maine Square!
Shown here are the prettiest little semi precious stone friendship bracelets by Mermaids & Madeleines designed by Heather Auclair. Her designs are so sweet! One size fits all as they are all adjustable. And you must see the gorgeous macrame detail on these in person. Amazing craftsmanship!
Nothing says New England like these super preppy chic rope bracelets made by Kelly Gordon at her brand, Sea Ropes Maine! The pink and navy color has been the most popular, but I LOVE the navy with the gold for a little bit of glam, and the white rope bracelet with the multi colors reminds me of my favorite Hudson Bay blanket.
These mini stud earrings by Salty Girl Jewels are super preppy and sweet. I just love them all. Anything that sparkles really catches my eye and I just can't get over the adorable mini anchor earrings! I had more colors choices of the sparkle studs on hand, but they sold before I could take this photo! Salty Girl Jewels is a division of The Beaded Wire by Jessica Gomes. You can find what I have left of her collection HERE.
These preppy embroidered zipper pouches are made in Maine at the Maine Square. If you order online, you have the option to have it monogrammed!
Here is a great photo of the guys version of the limited edition LiveME buffalo plaid t-shirt! I must mention, that I am not suggesting that any man should wear all of these bow ties at once! It was just my way of displaying the many plaid bow ties I had created at The Maine Square. I am also not suggesting you wear a bow tie with a t-shirt. But if that's your style, I say go for it! I know there is probably a guy out there who can pull that look off!
There are many items pictured in this photo! Bow ties and pocket squares by The Maine Square, Soap by Borestone Soap Co., leather accessories and pocket pens handmade by The Acadian, Bandanas by Mister Bandana, and baseball hats by Gracie Designs.
And of course we had masks on hand to purchase! I have to say that the lobsters were the most popular. I don't have any more of these particular lobster masks on hand anymore, but you can find a different lobster style mask by clicking HERE.
Pictured here are nautical lobster, anchor, and whale earrings by Peachy Pendants. Pearls and gold anchor earrings by Fornash. Key fobs are by Sea Ropes and will be back in stock very soon! Click HERE to see if they are back yet. If not, it should be any day now, so keep checking!
I created these super preppy and fun ties for The Maine Square. I am now working on a wedding project and making the hydrangea print neckties for the groomsmen. What a nice choice!
And this is me, in all of my glory. I had a great day. It was hot but it was so much fun. I was thinking about hosting another pop up shop again in late September 2020, but I think I may wait until next spring 2021. However, I DO have plans to host regular virtual shopping events, so stay tuned for an invite to that if you are on my e mail list! I have also had thoughts of buying a box truck in the future and renovating it into a sweet little traveling boutique. I worry about owning a bricks and mortar shop with all of the uncertainty in the world which has been affecting so many small businesses as well as large companies. Money is a huge factor in what I decide to do at The Maine Square, so I would really appreciate your support! Let's put it this way, the more you buy from a small business, the better that small business can become. A small business can serve it's customers unlike any big box store for sure! And, if you'd like to invest in the growth of a small business in Maine, The Maine Square would very much welcome that! My mission is to support makers who design one of a kind limited edition items so that you will always have something unique to enjoy, and to give you a wonderful shopping experience. My hope is not only for you to enjoy that little work of art that you bought from The Maine Square, but also to think about that wonderful experience you had purchasing something special from my boutique. It's difficult to give that experience online, but I am certainly not going to stop trying! I will have to see how the fall and winter season goes. It really depends on you, the consumer.
I'd love to know what you'd like to see more of at The Maine Square!
Please feel free to comment below. I would love to hear from you all!P.S. Would you like to support a small business? The Maine Square needs your help in order to grow! If you would rather stop shopping at big box stores, here's your chance to do something about it!