How to dress a window

Written by Allan Britnell

Your window display is the first impression customers have of your store. If it’s cluttered or looks stale, then patrons will think the same of your shop and might not come in, says Nicki Roberts of New Image Props & Décor in Richmond, B.C. Here, she shares some of the secrets of the fine art of window dressing.

Dust buster

The first step in any window display is to thoroughly clean the space, especially the window. Roberts also recommends installing new light bulbs in all sockets so you don’t have to replace them once the installation is finished. To maintain a fresh look, the display should be cleaned roughly every six weeks.

Dollars and sense

Items in windows with outdoor exposure will slowly fade from the sunlight, rendering many unsellable. Keep this in mind when determining which items to place in the display.

Depth perception

Define the space you’re working in by creating a backdrop of some sort. It could be as elaborate as customized panels or something whimsical like a shower curtain. Whichever you choose, avoid the temptation to fill the entire space — it will look crowded and unappealing.

Heightened awareness

Use risers or columns to display merchandise at different levels. Roberts suggests laying items out in a triangle shape. “A triangle gives you flow,” says Roberts. “There should be something to rest your eye on at each corner.”

Body double

Mannequins can be very expensive and require skill to properly attire. Instead, suggests Roberts, use cheaper bust forms. Alternatively, you can use props to display your merchandise. One example she cites is a store that used a set of clubs to hang golf shirts from.

Read other pointers on How To contribute to your business success!

© 2003 Allan Britnell

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