Sunday, November 6, 2011

Shop 'Til You Drop!

Our friend Jenna at Flowers by Jenna is taking part in the Shop Till You Drop Expo,  a pre-Christmas shopping event happening today at the Delta Edmonton South. You may remember Jenna as the designer who created the stunningly romantic floral arrangements for ID Bohemia's "Beauty & The Beast" editorial, seen on the WedLuxe Couture Chronicles. This post will talk about how we designed and put together her booth.

Jenna really wanted a warm and homey feel for her booth—classy and elegant, yet welcoming and a bit rustic. Though Jenna's personal style is somewhat minimal, she wanted something more lush and full for her booth to give her customers plenty of holiday decorating inspiration. She loves antiques, too, so we made sure to bring in some well-worn pieces, both antique and reproduction. For colour, she wanted her flowers to be the feature, so we grounded the booth in soothing tones of brown, grey and cream, letting the flowers act as pops of colour against this neutral backdrop. Our inspiration for her booth design came from the many amazing flower boutiques my partner Aaron and I visited during our honeymoon in Paris, as well as local design-savvy garden centres like Wellington and Greenland.

Since Jenna would be displaying and selling lots of flowers, greens and wreaths, we needed to unify all that texture, colour, and otherwise small stuff with some big gestures. ID Bohemia hung off-white curtains across the back of her space, creating a big block of colour (yes, white is a colour) to frame everything within the booth, and lightening the atmosphere considerably from the usual black trade show drapery. We advised Jenna to frame her banner prior to the show, to give her banner (i.e. her name and brand) a clean and polished look. We hung the framed banner across the back of the booth with wide grey ribbon tied in bows.

As another big gesture, we created a long counter, spanning the entire booth, by laying thick salvaged fir beams across two black wrought iron urns. On the counter, we arranged several antique wooden crates Jenna had found at country garage sales, and placed galvanized buckets inside for bunches of cedar and curly willow, and bouquets of hydrangea, lilies and cymbidium orchids. For greater texture and sparkle, we added rustic terracotta finials, and glass apothecaries filled with gold and silver ornaments. For height, Jenna created a simple arrangement of birch branches hung with ornaments. The informal symmetry of the cedar boughs and birch branches framed her booth nicely, lending the space greater presence without being overwhelming.

Jenna asked for a surface to write down contact info for her customers, where she could also keep her business cards and 4"x6" postcard coupons (10% off wedding packages over $1000). We placed a round, weathered wood table to one side of the booth, and then laid a lace tablecloth across the top for a casual French touch. A gourmet gift basket that Jenna had created took center stage on the table, and we then arranged her business cards and postcards around it in vintage ceramic and silver bowls.

To really give the booth a room-like feel, we laid a neutral-toned rug on the floor, knowing its hard-wearing material would  stand up to lots of foot traffic. On top of the rug, we laid out vintage galvanized wash basins, lined them with heavy brown cotton cloth, and placed Jenna's fresh wreaths inside. To vary the height and texture, we then mixed in her fresh bouquets of lilies, roses, kale and tulips. Prices were handwritten on manila shipping tags and tied on with sisal twine, a sweet touch that emphasised the handmade nature of Jenna's work. The antique window frame and slipper chair (Jenna had reupholstered it herself!) were the perfect finishing elements to her inviting space, and as the doors opened and guests began streaming in, we were happy to hear several oohs and ahhs.

ID Bohemia has built its reputation on spectacular event design for weddings, social events and corporate celebrations, but did you know we also design trade show booths, window displays and other promotional settings? If you are looking for a distinctive environment for your next trade show or window display, we'd love to hear from you! What do you think of Jenna's booth?

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