As winners of a Retail Boot Camp from Tru Vue, The Framer’s Gallery owners Dave and Christy Ping had the opportunity to work with consultant Meg Glasgow, owner of The Gallery at Finer Frames in Eagle, ID. This first boot camp focused on merchandising, wall design, and sales training.
They say a picture is worth a thousand words, and for the owners and staff at The Framer’s Gallery in Brecksville, OH, one framed piece told quite a story of how inventive design and craftsmanship can elevate the possibilities of custom framing in the eyes of customers.
I know I’ve said this many times, but nothing is more important than having great displays on your walls that showcase what we can do as custom framers. My nickname for them is “silent salespeople,” because they inspire customers. But they also remind our staff of what’s possible with upgraded materials and advanced techniques.
Dave and Christy had recently taken over the business, and they had the advantage of having long-time, experienced staff members there who were excited to expand their design scope. With such potential, we identified a number of ways they could showcase more innovation and creativity on their display wall and throughout their store.
Upgrading from Fine to Wow!
One of the first things we did was walk through a framing package I created for a painting of a dog, titled Jack Be Nimble, by Portland-based artist Kellee Beaudry. This piece was a lesson in the many tools and techniques that are available to customer framers to make their customers’ projects truly special.
The 30” x 30” piece features a vibrant orange burl wood frame stacked inside a brown lacquer frame. Because both frames had a high-gloss finish, I rubbed the orange with steel wool to reduce the shine and add contrast between the two.
Circles cut from mat board and applied to the top mat add a further dimension to the stacked mats, creating a whimsical, random pattern that compliments the art. The mats were wrapped in white fabric, and a flexible fabric fillet in brown from Frank’s Fabrics fits between the two, breaking up the white. Because the framing package and art are so colorful, the textured mat adds visual interest without overwhelming the eye. The piece is glazed with Optium Museum Acrylic® for its light weight, anti-reflective quality, and UV protection.
Elevating the Customer Experience
A piece like Jack Be Nimble isn’t just eye candy for customers. Displaying framing techniques like those used in this project can help increase a store’s average ticket, as upgraded materials and design work add to the price. When customers can understand the visual impact of such design elements, they tend to be more open to including them in their projects, especially when you can contrast simpler to more complex designs at the counter. Regardless of their ultimate decision, customers appreciate being shown options and receiving personalized attention.
Dave and Christy have already seen the impact of having this piece on their wall. Situated in the center of a collection of art glass and contemporary pieces, Jack Be Nimble has drawn an enthusiastic response from customers. It shows how much custom framing can add to an already vibrant piece of artwork.
These eye-popping, show-stopping’ kind of displays capture and impress customers. Having these “silent salespeople” that we can point to helps customers see the innovative techniques available and visualize the potential for their own pieces. This type of display is also the kind of thing that improves the overall customer experience and influences positive word-of-mouth.
This Tru Vue Retail Boot Camp was part of a series of consultation giveaways that focused on specific areas of running an independent custom framing business. If you haven’t watched is yet – click here to watch the video where Meg and the Pings discuss this piece.
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This article is intended for educational purposes only and does not replace independent professional judgment. Statements of fact and opinions expressed are those of the author(s) individually and, unless expressly stated to the contrary, are not the opinion or position of Tru Vue or its employees. Tru Vue does not endorse or approve, and assumes no responsibility for, the content, accuracy or completeness of the information presented.