Pop-up shops are the new trend happening all over the country. Empty shops doing nothing but making the high streets look sad are being given a new lease of life with the growing new economy that is buzzing with handmade makers like yourself. As most makers stay online you may be missing the opportunity to have your products in stores that are getting the awesome passing trade like the big brothers in retail, such as, Marks and Spencers, BHM, Top Shop, Body Shop etc…
As setting up shop online is not a cheap feat, this is from a person who ran a hair and beauty store for 4 years. Having the opportunity to share a space with followers makers is a chance not to be missed. Even if it was not on your business agenda, its still could be something to find out about.
The new economy has a different mindset, you are taught about competitors, whereas the handmade community rises up against the competitor’s state of mind and join forces to use each other’s uniqueness.
This is what I saw happening in a local pop-up shop in a nearby town. I don’t travel there often but when I do, I don’t linger. But for some reason, I walked a different way and found The Shop in the Square “pop up shop”. The window display drew me in straight away. This is why I talk about the importance of your shop window whether online or offline. It’s the first instance of capturing your visitor’s attention.
When Ii went inside I was spoilt for choice, where should I begin looking first. It was lovely then I thought about sharing this with you. I asked the lady about taking pictures and then got talking. In all the excitement I collected many makers details, purchased an item, met some great ladies and completely forgot about the pictures until I got home.
Thankfully I started a communication with the manager and maker of the shop. So I could carry on the great connection. Now I would like to introduce Charlotte the maker & manager I was just referring to. She has kindly answered a few questions I sent her.
I hope the following with give you a little insight into The Shop in the Square in Wolverhampton. And if you are local get down there and support your fellow makers.
Welcome to The Shop in the Square based in Wolverhampton
When did the “pop-up shop” The Shop in the Square open?
The shop opened last year in June, so we are about to turn one at the end of the month!
When it opened how many handmade makers joined?
We have maintained around 30 makers at all times, at one point we were supporting 45 different makers, and over the year have supported around 80 different businesses.
How many makers are currently in The Shop in the Square now?
There are currently 32 makers in the shop
You said that even though it’s a pop up shop you are there permanently. Could you give us a little detail about that?
Initially the contract was for six months, however, we were successful in securing the space for a further six months, which has now rolled over again to until Christmas when we will be looking at going independent. We are currently working on an exciting selling website which will enable us to potentially double our sales!
How long can a handmade maker stay in the shop?
It varies from maker to maker, there is no set time! We have had around ten of the makers since opening last year.
What are the maker’s costs for selling in your pop up shop?
There is just a one off the registration fee, which is currently just £10, and then sellers pay 30% commission on sales made, meaning it is a relatively low-risk opportunity. This is due for review when we hit our one year mark.
Can makers still apply to join your pop-up shop?
Yes, we are always looking for something different! Makers must be from the Black Country area, registered self-employed, and available to work one day per month in the shop.
If so how can a maker get in touch?
By email on email@example.com
What’s been the greatest part of working in a pop-up shop?
Watching the businesses grow and support each other in their work! We have become a little family!
What’s been the not so nice part of working in your pop up shop?
Obviously, as creatives, the admin can be difficult, but it is all more than worth it!
Here are the contact details if you would like to visit the shop.
Shop in the Square, Queen Street, Wolverhampton. (Find them behind the man on the horse).
How does a pop-up shop sound to you and your business? Would you be interested in joining one? If you are already in a pop-up shop, share how its going.