Craft shows displays require a lot of work to set up. Not to mention, trunk space is often limited. So display selves, props, and fixtures can’t be too bulky.
However, it is important that products are displayed in a professional manner and in a way that makes it easy for people to shop them.
This article will share some shelving ideas that are affordable and may work for your display.
What to consider when choosing shelves for your craft show display
Your craft show display should elevate your products; it should not be an afterthought. Imagine if you stepped into a high-end boutique selling expensive products and the display fixtures were cheap, mismatched, banged up, and flimsy. You might question the quality of the products or second guess paying their high prices.
You must be mindful of your craft business’s bottom line, as well as the portability and ease of setup when choosing craft show display shelves. However, those aren’t the only things you should be considering.
The following are also important factors when it comes to craft show display shelves and racks.
Many crafters think a brand is something they don’t have to worry about, since they have a small business. But whether you put effort into your brand or not, shoppers are forming an opinion of it.
Think of your brand as what’s communicated to shoppers without the use of words.
For example, a business owner may tell shoppers they sell high-end luxury items, but if they look like they’ve just rolled out of bed, and are displaying those products on cheap folding plastic tables, those shoppers won’t be buying it.
If they want shoppers to believe their products are high-end, then everything from the display shelves to the way the sales people dress must say “high-end”.
Keep that in mind when choosing your craft show display shelves. If your products are modern, don’t choose shabby chic shelving.
Your craft show display should tell a story and/or convey a feeling. I teach you how to choose your display’s story and design a display based on it in the free email course: 5 Days to a Standout Display.
For example, let’s say I sell reusable beeswax wraps. I may want to covey a story of being environmentally friendly or getting back to nature. Natural wood display shelves would help tell that story.
On the other hand, displaying environmentally friendly beeswax wraps on a non-recyclable, artificial material detracts from my story. It would be like someone talking about how healthy they eat all the time while shoving a Big Mac in their mouth. It makes you question the authenticity of their story.
If you’re not sure what type of story you want to tell join the free course: 5 DAYS TO A STANDOUT DISPLAY.
If you plan to sell at outdoor events, be sure to choose shelves and fixtures that won’t be blown over by a gust of wind.
Fragile or tipsy-looking shelves don’t encourage people to explore your items. No one wants to be responsible for a display shelf full of products tipping over. If a fixture looks wobbly, shoppers will be more likely to look, but not touch. And that doesn’t help to encourage sales.
You want shoppers to dive into your products, feel their quality, and make a connection with them. Sturdy fixtures that space products out so they can easily be picked up and set back down will encourage that behavior.
Foldable Shelves for Craft Shows
Collapsible shelves are easy to transport to and from craft shows, especially when you’re short on trunk space. Smaller folding shelves would work to add verticle display space on top of a craft show table.
You could display items such as candles, bath & body products, home goods such as potted plants or pottery. Some accessories, such as folded scarves or jewelry on display props may also work on shelving units like these. However, you would have to be mindful of the slats so products don’t fall through.
The following folding shelves are actually shoe racks, but could still work to add verticle shelving space.
If you require a larger folding shelf unit, the following are all collapsable and have more solid shelves.
Stackable Shelves for Craft Shows
Using a stackable system would allow you to unstack the units to make them more portable. You can also adjust for each type of event. If you’re selling at a trade show and have more floor space, you may stack several units to make a tall shelf.
If you’re selling at a craft show and only have a table, you can break the units apart and use one or two on top of your table.
Collapsable Cube Shelving for Craft Shows
Cube shelving can work well because you can stack and reconfigure the cubes to fit your space. If you need a more solid surface to display your products on than the grids provide, you could cut some pieces of wood to size and slide them in each cube. If you don’t have access to power tools, heavier poster board or even foam core wrapped in fabric or shelf liner could work. Just be sure it still looks polished and professional.
These could work on top of a table, or on the ground if you’re able to stack enough cubes high enough. You don’t want shoppers to have to crouch down to see and shop your products.
This one has a more solid surface to set products on, can be configured into different shapes and also comes in a variety of colors:
Shelving Unit with Hanging Space
Certain types of products may require hanging and shelving space. This type of shelving/hanging system would be great for vendors who sell:
- Scarves (e.g. display scarves on hangers and fold extra stock below)
- Hanging plants (e.g. display hanging planters above and pots below; view example here)
- Hanging ornaments
With the addition of a product like the one below, you could also display items that can be hung by hooks. For example, if a package of cards has a hole punched in the top and could be hooked onto the hanger below. That hanger could then be hung on the fixture above.
Or add extra shelving space with a hanging organizer:
Craft Show Display Shelves for Tabletop
There are several riser and tiered options for tabletop display shelves. These types of display units can make smaller items easier to see and shop.
Products such as bath & body, candles, ornaments, pottery, smaller accessories such as rings, pins, etc. would work for these types of shelves.
Portable Display Stands for Craft Shows
For displaying art or photography, an easel stand may work for you. You may also use a stand like this behind your table, to display signage.
For example, if you sell jewelry, you may have a lifestyle photo of your jewelry enlarged, and display it on this type of stand.
The smaller easels below would also be perfect for signage, such as displaying prices next to a grouping of products.
Of course, small pieces of art and greeting cards could also be displayed on these easels.
A jewelry maker could even use these smaller easels to display necklaces, if it fits their brand or a collection.
For example, a collection of statement pieces could hang on canvases, as though they are pieces of art. A small hook secured to the canvas would allow a necklace, bracelet, or ring to be displayed.
Here’s another easel option in a more modern material:
Craft Fair Display Racks
If you sell smaller items, such as jewelry, greeting cards, ornaments, etc. and they can be hung, a spinning display rack may work.
Tiered baskets also work for some craft show displays. Keep in mind, sometimes, items thrown into baskets can make shoppers feel it’s a bargain bin and they expect prices to be low. If you plan to use a basket shelving system, like the one below, try to keep it clean and organized.
Simply grouping items by color or collection can improve the display.
I hope this article has sparked some ideas for your craft show display 🙂
You may also be interested in The Best Craft Show Table Covers (Plus Ideas & Tips)
Hey, I’m Erin 🙂 I write about small business and craft show techniques I’ve learned from being a small business owner for almost 2 decades, selling at dozens of craft shows, and earning a diploma in Visual Communication Design. I hope you find my advice helpful!