All photos are my booth this month
After 6.5 years of selling in antique malls, I made the change last summer to selling only at Chartreuse's monthly barn sale. I'd been gushing about Chartreuse for years, and when an opportunity came up, I jumped. In fact, it's surprisingly I didn't actually hurt myself making a decision that quickly.
I would've done full-on Junk Fight Club with any dealer for the opportunity.
Initially, I breathed a sigh of relief; it felt like being HOME. The relief of not constantly worrying about adding more items. The amazing dealers who have now become junker BFFs. The unflagging enthusiasm of a propietor who CARES and is always innovating. The assuredness that we're all in this TOGETHER, rather than just worrying about my tiny fiefdom booth.
It's only once a month (well, with a few bonus events thrown in), which is a huge bonus for a busy day-job slave. I really only have to go out there once a month to foof—a MAJOR foof—but at least I don't feel guilty every weekend for neglecting a daily booth.
It's more like putting on a show every month, with all the mini-freakouts, frenzied re-arranging, and late nights. BUT, there's also the camaraderie!
When you have a regular booth in an antique mall, there may be a dealer or 2 there while you're foofing to cackle with. At most locations, the foofing has to happen during business hours, however, so you have to rein in the crazy and act civilized. Which we all know hinders the creativity.
At Chartreuse, we're foofing when it's closed—with no customers—and it's hilarious. Often it's late at night or we've been there for 6-8 hours (or 15 like *someone* I know). It's a junk party ... exactly like putting on a show. Everything's spread out in the aisles, we're pitching in to help haul big pieces, panicky, yadda yadda.
And THEN! We get to actually put on a show! Most of us are all there all weekend. We're experiencing the RUSH. And we get to do it every month!
What I hadn't considered is that because our sales are monthly, the pressure is ON to make the booth look different every time. Oy. What I thought would be easier is in fact HARDER.
The junk sells, which is a tribute to Chartreuse itself, and to the business model and loyal customers. So, I'm on the hunt much more than I ever was, and feel the pressure to feed the booth beast. I think about my booth much more than I've ever done. Good thing my favorite part is the hunt. Because the beast is HUNGRY.