And we're off...
To DC that is, for the American Fine Craft Show from October 21-23, at the DC Armory. I've been working all summer, getting ready for this show, and the one to follow next month in LA. Along with this new website, I've also rebranded the look of my booth, with new banners, new jewelry stands and new lighting. Getting all of this together and packed efficiently so the experience for the visitor will be interesting and enjoyable makes me a bit nervous, to say the least.
As a jeweler and a designer, I think about how the pieces fit on the body, how heavy they are, how mobile they are. Do earrings catch strands of hair? Are bracelets always spinning around or laying flat? I want to adopt the same attitude to the booth, making it attractive but also easy to see the collection. That means laying it out so you can browse, and making sure the lighting is adequate so the pieces are properly lit and the shadows cast by people's heads don't plunge the booth into an overall gray fog.
When I was a teenager I did lots of wholesale and retail jewelry shows with my parent's business, Thunderbird Gems. Forty years ago, things were very different. They reserved a table at the show, and we packed up the suburban and drove for days from one show to the next, selling jewelry that has now made a comeback: gold plated geodes, druzy quartz and quartz points. All of that material was heavy, and the booth set up was very basic...items pinned to velvet boards, a few drafting lamps clamped to the table, and we were off. Today some shows have a digital marketplace to populate as well as the hands on market. Now the logistics of planning and arriving at the show take time and I'm grateful to the shows for all the help they give me.
So I'm off to DC. If you're in the neighborhood, stop by and say hi! You might find the perfect gift for a loved one or yourself, and I'd love to chat about jewelry and architecture, and can you give me a quick booth crit?!