HomeAbout MeAround the ShopEvents and ShowsTutorials and Recipes

July 19, 2011

The Top 10 Most Important Things for Your Antique Booth's Success and Your Sanity :)

I've had alot of feedback and questions on my three part post on how to start your own antique business......or really, any mall type business for that matter.  My daughter reminded me of several things she always overhears me saying that I think are important in the whole scheme of things as well.....so I will give just the top ten most important pieces of  personal "wisdom" I can to close this out......

1)  Sell antiques and all things old because you love them.  If this is simply a business venture you have chosen because you think you can retire from  your day job and be your own boss, I recommend you pick Avon or Mary Kay, because if your heart isn't in it your antique business will have no soul.  You attitude towards what you sell surely affects it's energy and your success.  It's rather  like becoming a Vet and not really liking animals.......it just shows!

2)  Sell only things you love.......this is a hard one because how do you ever turn loose of what you adore?  You learn to detach.....you also adopt the motto "keep the best and sell the rest".....you find yourself constantly upgrading your surroundings at home by do this.....By doing this you also develop your own style, as everything will have a common denominator and simply blend together becoming "you".......it works, trust me.

3)  Do not "chase" the sale.  When I first started we all "looked at the book" to see what was selling and then all showed up the next week with those things....lol  I have to tell you I did that for about a year, never selling any of them, and ended up with a lot of old stuff I didn't really even like.  Bad move.  At least stick with number 2 above and sell only what YOU love so if you have to take it home, you are still happy :)

4)  Do not sell inferior merchandise.  We all love shabby and the chippier the better, but when it comes to china and glass....it's just not worth how little you get for it to bother.......it's got to be really special and 100 years old before I will deal with cracks and such.    This applies to furniture as well....we all love to shop on the curb and that is wonderful, but make certain the repairs are expertly done and will hold up under the original use of the item.  Sell shoddy furniture and it will come back to haunt you.  The idea is not to "cover up", but to restore and not with something that just lasts until they get their item home.

5)  Be original....or as original as you can.  If I took an idea from someone else, ie, altered bottles, etc, I always put MY spin on them.  The concept was the same, however, the end product was always, always different.  Don't make someone else's pillows, or purses, or lampshades.  Create your own.  You will be known for copying, and believe me.....no one likes that. 

6)  Remember their is a big difference in copying and reinventing the idea.......big difference, and reinventing is fine.  That works in reverse as well.......you can't be offended unless someone shows up with something identical to your product......then.....well, it's okay to ask them why.

7)  If you reveal your sources, then you can't get upset when you are there shopping and bump into the people you shared with.  Keep it to yourself.....period.  You don't tell if you got it on the curb, at an estate/garage sale, or flea market....just none of any one's business......and THEY will show up, trust me.

8)  Never, ever share what you paid for something.  I know we are all so proud of how little we pay for some things we find and what to brag on our ability to do so........just don't do it.  If you share what you paid, then list it on Etsy for alot more.....well,  it's just not a good thing....and no one needs to know your business.  Remember, you are reselling these things, trying to make as much as you can, so why advertise you got it for a song.....just know you did and smile all the way to the bank.  Think about it....

9)  If you want to survive in an antique mall setting, mind your own business.  Think high school was bad?  Get into the thick of an antique mall and see how ugly grown up women can get......I'm just sayin'

10)  If you stop having fun, stop doing it...........

These are all things I wish I had know in the beginning of my antique mall life......and some are tough to learn as you have to actually experience the bad before you know what to do next time.  I hope this helps you just a bit on your way to making your million selling junk :)

I'm back to normal posting now......thanks for hanging in there with me.


  1. Jana,
    This is great advice! I agree with everything but the one that I have experienced first hand is becoming too friendly with the dealers who work at the front desk on a weekly basis. I have found that some of them can be really greedy and jealous.
    Also, I do not like it when others copy my ideas and their booth is located in the same mall.
    Oh, the things we learn, and often the hard way.

    Thanks for a wonderful series.

  2. Great tips.Totally agree.
    Have learned some of those in my whole 3 years of having a store. =)

    barbara jean

  3. Hi Jana,
    More awesome tips!! Keep them coming!! Advice from someone who has traveled the road before is priceless!! Thank you so much for sharing your experience and wisdom!!
    Have a wonderful day!!


Your comments mean alot to me......thank you for sharing.

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...