One thing I noticed at the American Craft Council Show in San Francisco was how well designed and effective signage improves the overall impression of a booth.
ACC supplied a small tag for the booth. Sure it had your name and location, but it was too small and generic to be memorable. Unremarkable in every respect, it did not establish an artist's identity and was too high. Lesson learned: Do not depend on generic name banners as your signage. They do not differentiate your booth any more than map coordinates.
The sign below for Lauren Markley exemplifies a step up with minimum effort. It has her name, an image of her work, and a short description, in this case "Contemporary Jewelry".
But this sign could also be better. It was lacking size. It needs to be bigger to make an impact. It also suffered from being wrinkled and had a slight texture to the plasticized finish (shown below.) The plasticized finish reflected the light and the wrinkles distracted from the overall impression.
You can see the "linen-like texture" to the sign in this close-up, and the grommets in the corners were distracting to the overall aesthetic. Avoid putting grommets in your sign if at all possible. Grommets may be a necessity for an outdoor sign that needs to be tied down against the wind, -- but inside they are not working.
Instead, add a pocket or fold over seam for a ruler or pole at the top and the bottom. This usually looks far more attractive and straightens out the wrinkles creating a more polished appearance.
Moving on to an improved example:
The sign for Beverly Tadeu was more successful. It seems to be printed on fabric so it has a matte finish. There are no reflections even though the light is shining right on her sign. The highlight on the sign was very eye catching. The sign also matches her fabric booth drape.
Hanging the full height of her booth, the sign goes seamlessly from the top of her booth to below eye level with a big image of her earrings. This is a great way to inform the customer walking past your booth exactly what type of work is available for purchase.
Notice that the sign has no grommets at the top of the sign and seems to be hung from a pole at the top of her booth. Perfect. No wrinkles. It projects a polished impression.
Her clean and white jewelry display of simple matte acyclic matches the sign aesthetic perfectly.
Notice that on the front of her display table Beverly Tadeu hung a piece of sheer unwrinkled fabric to conceal the legs of her table. This scrim is like a veil creating a more polished appearance to her booth presentation. It also matches her booth drape.
Notice that she did not use cases to display her jewelry, a growing trend. So often the cases are a barrier between the customer and a purchase. Getting the item for sale into the customer's hand is one of those #1 sales techniques. While I can see that this is a security risk, if you can afford to go in this direction, it is a great idea.
When everything works together it creates a seamless aesthetic with a more cohesive and polished impression.
Previous posts in this ACC series: