Ghoul Friday Invades The Wine Rack
I was recently given a generous offer by someone: decorate a store for Halloween (using my private collection of decorations) and they will sell my items for two weeks.
I've never decorated a store, so I had to come up with some logical guidelines pretty quick for myself:
- Keep everything up and out of the way
- Don't detract from the products or block them
- Items must be fairly small (shelves were 1 foot deep)
- Set up and take down must be easy (and not messy especially since it's during store hours)
- Choose items that match the style of the store and are LESS likely to offend
That last point was even more important when I found out they were going to be inspected by a bigwig in the company in the next week. While the employees were excited for some bloody severed heads and cocoon victims, I didn't think the manager of the store (or the big suits coming to inspect the store) would be so keen.
That meant most of my handmade items were out.
My favourite decorated spot is the one posted above: a simple little skeleton wired to the shelf, looking at the "Wine of the Week" sign.
The rest were mainly put along the top shelves with the lights angled to cast shadows on the wall.
I DID put up the mummified heads, but I left a bin at the store in case her manager wanted them taken down. It's pretty basic - I didn't want to complicate it (especially before it was approved).
I had a few entertaining moments as I set up the store. My pumpkins and little hooters were in the Ghoulish Goodies box on the counter. I was asked what they were for by a customer genuinely interested in them. I thought it was a funny question, but proceeded to give ideas (from gifts to decorative suggestions). But when a second woman (bronzed skin, platinum hair, designer sunglasses, acrylic red nails, accompanied by small dog wearing snazzy outfit) later leaned over the box with a slightly curled nose and flatly said "What do people do with these?", I faltered. I took that pause; you know the one where you're gauging how far on the sarcasm scale you should slide?
And as straight as if I were talking about the weather, I replied "I suppose you could put on a small puppet show. Best done in private though. But you could also..." and proceeded to tell her the same ideas I'd given to the other woman.
The other funny encounter was when I was up on the ladder putting the red material along the shelf. Twice someone looked and said "Decorating for Christmas already?". Christmas? They obviously weren't looking past the red material to the items above it. Either that or vampire busts and scorpions are on their list of festive decor for December.
So where is all this? At the Wine Rack on Yonge St just north of Eglinton (at Erskine) in Toronto. If you're hoping to pick up a plant, a book or something else of mine, you might want to call ahead and ask if Alicia is working (she's the one who will be selling the items during her shift).
If only I'd had a budget to play with...