Three Little Birds Vintage Market Recap + Advice


Last month I was a vendor at the Three Little Birds Market on a gorgeous spring day in northwest Indiana.  The market was outdoors, and I had a 10×10 space under a big pavilion.  I also did the 3LB market once last year – you can read about it Here.

Every market is a little bit different, and you can really learn so much and apply that knowledge for future events.  I was quite proud of our setup and feel very comfortable with the overall aesthetic of the space and how we’ve evolved since that first market we did.

(Guy in the Garage made the trees for the display and came to keep me company – he also had worked on several of the pieces we had for sale.  I’m so thankful to have him supporting me in this journey – a good partner makes a world of difference!)

How to be a successful furniture and decor vendor at a vintage market - Three Little Birds Market recap

First impressions are so important at a market.  When people glance at your space, what do you want them to immediately think or feel?  One girl excitedly came into my booth and said “Everything is so fresh and clean!”   It made me giggle at the time, but that’s actually a pretty good description of most of my work – fresh, clean style.  It’s also part of my brand and how I want to be remembered when people think of my work.

How to be a successful furniture and decor vendor at a vintage market - Three Little Birds Market recap

We used the trees and pennant banners to define our “walls” and I also hung my DIY Girl in the Garage banner across the top branches of the back trees.

* Vanity Makeover with Easy Image Transfer Tutorial

* Repurposed Antique Radio Cabinet Tutorial

How to be a successful furniture and decor vendor at a vintage market - Three Little Birds Market recapI use a Square card reader so I can take credit cards, and I always display this basic sign that they give you in a pretty frame.  It’s almost mandatory that vendors accept credit cards nowadays, or you could miss out on a lot of sales.

How to be a successful furniture and decor vendor at a vintage market - Three Little Birds Market recap

The space was full but not overly crowded.  Visitors need to be able to walk around and see everything without feeling like they’re messing up your displays.

* Decoupage Napkin Crate Tutorial

How to be a successful furniture and decor vendor at a vintage market - Three Little Birds Market recap

**A quick note….  I’m creating some epic info just for you guys who want to learn more about running a vintage market space or an antique booth – be sure to sign up so you’ll be notified when the posts are available  —>   Click here to be notified when I have new content available about selling upcycled furniture and decor for profit.

One thing that’s changed from last year is that I now bring a large tattoo bamboo mat for the floor.  It makes the space feel more homey, is better on your feet than standing on concrete all day, and really just ties the whole space together.  It also rolls up fast and is easy to transport and store.  It’s 10×6 and I got it from Decor Steals when they had it as a deal of the day last year.  (You can sign up for their emails to see when they’re going to offer it again, or if you don’t want to wait and don’t mind paying more, it’s available Here also.)

How to be a successful furniture and decor vendor at a vintage market - Three Little Birds Market recap

I had a variety of price points so that my items would appeal to more buyers.

* Antique Music Cabinet Makeover Tutorial

* Repurposed Drawer to Storage Cabinet Tutorial

How to be a successful furniture and decor vendor at a vintage market - Three Little Birds Market recap

Take advantage of your space by stacking.  Have some items at eye-level to grab people’s attention, not everything on the ground.

* Antique Dining Set Makeover Tutorial

How to be a successful furniture and decor vendor at a vintage market - Three Little Birds Market recap

Rearrange your items every so often to keep your display fresh for those visitors who walk through more than once.  You never know what may catch their eye that they missed the first time!  Also, you obviously need to rearrange whenever pieces sell.  Keep your space looking full and styled.

Creating some vignettes can help with sales too.  Show people how they can use items in their own home.  I primarily just sell furniture and home decor that I’ve upcycled myself, but I also brought some smaller items like vintage bottles and books to help with staging – so my pieces didn’t look so empty.

* Repurposed Drawer with Shelves TutorialHow to be a successful furniture and decor vendor at a vintage market - Three Little Birds Market recap

The morning of a one-day market is always kind of hectic during set-up, but soon the adrenaline kicks in and you’re on this high that keeps you going even if you didn’t sleep last night or hardly get to eat lunch between customers.  The energy of all the vendors and shoppers who share a common love for vintage/handmade/artsy items is electric and there’s almost nothing like it!

How to be a successful furniture and decor vendor at a vintage market - Three Little Birds Market recap

In my booth at Antiques on Main I had printed some of these fliers (designed on canva.com) to let people know about my upcoming markets.  I brought a bunch with so that people would know about my next market Hunt and Gather which is only a few weeks away in Crown Point, Indiana.  It’s a 2-day event which means more work, more exhaustion, and more excited adrenaline.  🙂

How to be a successful furniture and decor vendor at a vintage market - Three Little Birds Market recap

How to be a successful furniture and decor vendor at a vintage market - Three Little Birds Market recap

What else would you like to know about being a vendor at a vintage market?

Leave me a comment below with your question or visit the related posts below.

Jen

.

Everything I Learned While Selling at my First Vintage Market

Everything I learned while selling at my first vintage market - Girl in the GarageMore Advice for a Successful Vintage Market

Advice for a successful vintage market - Girl in the GarageDoing Your First Vintage Market or Craft Fair? {Vendor Tips and Resources}

Doing your first vintage market or craft fair? Vendor tips and resources.

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16 Comments on Three Little Birds Vintage Market Recap + Advice

  1. Linda
    June 27, 2017 at 9:03 pm (12 months ago)

    Oh My Goodness – I have been following you for a long time and never knew you were local to me!!! I was not at that market this time but it is a great market. Next time – hope to see you around.
    Your booth looks great – love the “trees”!

    Reply
    • Jen
      June 29, 2017 at 6:33 pm (12 months ago)

      Oh, that’s so funny! You’ll have to come say Hi sometime! Maybe I’ll see you at Hunt and Gather in Crown Point in July. 🙂

      Reply
  2. Nancy willard
    June 27, 2017 at 11:06 pm (12 months ago)

    Do you ever sell your pennants or are they just acting as walls for you? I made my first banner out of burlap but my fraycheck was dried up. Will this fray?? Darn , but love the look!! How many sales do you do a year?.

    Reply
    • Jen
      June 29, 2017 at 6:28 pm (12 months ago)

      Thanks Nancy! These are actually cardstock banners that I bought from a party supply store for $4 each. I have made a fabric pennant banner before though (from a drop cloth), and ran my sewing machine about a half inch from the edges to keep it from fraying. Otherwise I’d be concerned the burlap will fray without anything on the edges. I do 2-3 sales per year, and may add more since I’m hopefully buying a trailer soon. I also have a booth in an antique store that keeps me busy. 🙂

      Reply
  3. Eve
    June 28, 2017 at 3:05 pm (12 months ago)

    Such great tips and your booth looks amazing! I’ve been contemplating being a vendor at a market…just need to get over the fears & build up some inventory. Thanks for the inspiration:)

    Reply
    • Jen
      June 29, 2017 at 6:39 pm (12 months ago)

      Thanks so much, Eve! Did you check out my related posts and sign up for email updates about doing markets? Good luck and let me know if you have questions!

      Reply
      • Eve
        June 29, 2017 at 11:04 pm (12 months ago)

        Thanks for your reply, Jen! Yes I’ve seen the related posts & have signed up for future updates. Looking forward to learning & finally taking the plunge😀

        Reply
  4. Cynthia
    June 29, 2017 at 9:46 am (12 months ago)

    It looks fantastic Jen ! I have an 8 x 8 vendor booth and find it challenging to balance larger items ( which bring more incone ) with smaller items ( I have to sell more of to create income ). I signed up for the newsletter even though I feel I know alot – there is always something I can learn. You are very inspiring to me ! Thanks ! ❤

    Reply
    • Jen
      June 29, 2017 at 6:43 pm (12 months ago)

      Thanks Cynthia, I feel your struggle. Smaller items can sometimes be just as time consuming to redo as the bigger pieces, with much less profit. It’s tough to find a balance sometimes. Happy to have you following along! 🙂

      Reply
  5. Stacy
    April 3, 2018 at 9:28 pm (3 months ago)

    How much cash should you bring to make change at a market? I’m doing my first in May and I’m not sure how much I’ll need.

    Reply
    • Jen, Girl in the Garage
      April 4, 2018 at 1:17 pm (3 months ago)

      Hi Stacy, congrats on your upcoming market! There are a few things to consider when deciding how much cash to bring for change. First, are you bringing a Square card reader to take cards? I definitely recommend it – most of my market sales are done through a card reader. But make sure you’ll have access to wifi or that you can create your own hotspot with your phone. Second, what are your prices like? People are more likely to pay cash for less expensive items. I think I bring about 100 or less in cash, and don’t end up using most of it. So I can just take it back to the bank after. It doesn’t hurt to have too much, but it can really be a pain if you don’t have enough. (But definitely get the card reader if you can.) Hope that helps! 🙂

      Reply
      • Stacy
        April 6, 2018 at 5:28 pm (2 months ago)

        Thank you Jen! I never leave home without my square. I’ve had people buy things right out of the back of my car at my daughters school pick up.🤣 thank you for the advice. You are a huge inspiration to me. I appreciate all the advice you’re willing to share when so many others won’t. I hope to someday be half as inspirational to someone as you have been to me. I wish you many blessings!

        Reply
        • Jen, Girl in the Garage
          April 9, 2018 at 9:34 pm (2 months ago)

          Stacy, you are so incredibly sweet to say that. You made my day – thank you so much! <3

  6. Debi Smith
    April 14, 2018 at 8:23 am (2 months ago)

    I am trying to help my parents sell a large amount of small collectables & antiques. We also have lots of wooden parts of of antiques. How do I price these things at a flea market?

    Reply
    • Jen, Girl in the Garage
      April 17, 2018 at 10:04 pm (2 months ago)

      Debi, I’m sorry but I don’t have any experience with those types of items.

      Reply

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