The Mid-Atlantic Quilt Festival – the Highlights

So…

we’re back from our very 1st MAQF (Mid-Atlantic Quilt Festival) and most of you know that we’ve waited several years for the chance to vend at this show and you know what???

It was well worth the wait!

But here’s the deal, you might remember from a recent post that the booth we were offered for this show was half-again as big as we’ve ever had before, (a booth and a half), and I was actually kinda looking forward to trying our hand at a larger booth. We’ve toyed with the idea of a larger booth for some time now and this was the perfect opportunity to see what we could do with more space. Having seen plenty of “booth-and-a-half’s” at Quilt Market & Festival, I figured I knew exactly how to proceed, so… as is my norm, I planned my complete booth layout weeks in advance of the show. I knew I’d need to take an additional table and I knew exactly where I wanted to place it as well as every bag I was taking!

But then a not-so-funny thing happened when we got to Hampton! From the moment I saw my booth I realized that the layout I had planned on using was totally & completely WRONG! If I had set my tables up the way I had planned, my sales area and all of my hardware and zippers would’ve been facing the back wall of the facility which would’ve been pretty stupid on my part, but the problem was…

I was suffering from a bad case of brain-lock!  Ugh!!!

I finally figured out an alternative plan after wasting close to an hour of valuable setup time but it wasn’t optimum. You can check it out below.

So what’s the verdict on
the “Booth & a half” experiment?

These were the positives:

1) I loved having two entrances. Super convenient!
2) Having only one level of gridwall boxes on one side of the booth was great!  It gave our customers MUCH easier access to the bag samples, and eliminated most of those precarious situations with customers trying to reach bags displayed in the double gridbox area, and….
3) It was very helpful having ALL of our hardware facing forward. It was easier for our customers to find what they needed especially during high traffic situations. It was also easier to re-stock.

But would we do it again?

I’m glad we tried it, but probably not. The rental for a booth & a half is 50% more than a single booth and although we had a really good show, I feel certain it didn’t increase our revenue by 50%. On the other hand, after careful study I think we’ve figured out a way to incorporate some of the positives listed above into our single booth configuration. Stay tuned for a future post on that. We’ll give it a go at AQS Paducah in April!  🙂

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And now…. it’s YOUR turn!

I’d love to know what you think of this booth setup compared to our usual arrangement? And for those of you who attended the MAQF, what did you enjoy the most? The classes, the fashion show, the quilt displays, the vendor mall or something else? And remember, we love reading your comments and answering your questions too, so please feel free to leave either or both in the space provided below.

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