Before I continue with the story of Lucketts 2016, let me rewind to one year ago, VIP Day 2015. We had tons of help lined up, cameras at the ready to capture the frenzy that usually happened when the gates opened. The anticipation was building as we neared 10:00. The gates were opened and customers strolled in. There wasn’t a rush at all. Everyone was relaxed and took their time. We had a steady stream of sales through the morning, but never a line, and the traffic slowed to a creep in the afternoon.
So, we expected something similar this year.
We were mistaken.
The gates opened early for the VIP day of Lucketts 2016 and our booth started to fill with customers and it just kept filling. And the line kept growing and growing until it spilled out of our tent and wrapped through the aisle between the two tent rows.
Here’s some video of the day from a camera we had set up in the tent…
That time lapse is from the first hour and it didn’t let up for about four hours. We were totally overwhelmed.
My mom and Kriste were ringing up orders as quickly as they could, but with so many one-of-a-kind items and so many large orders, it just took time. Some people waited in line for 40 minutes, unfortunately. Gloria (Kriste’s mom) and I finally grabbed some old fashioned paper sales books, a calculator, and some pocket change to accept quick cash sales and get the line moving a little faster.
When I wasn’t working the line, I was giving hugs to regular Lucketts shoppers and readers…
(This is Diane, who has been shopping my booth at Lucketts for at least four years, I think! She even stayed with my parents when she came to the event last year.)
I also signed books and look books. We were giving Look Book One with every milk paint purchase and my mom made sure everyone who checked out knew that. “Get Marian to sign it for you!”
She also thinks my “dresser & the yellow dress” video should’ve been a Super Bowl commercial. I’m not kidding.
Kriste and my mom worked the checkout as quickly and efficiently as they could. If we do the same format next year, though, we’ll probably have to set up two checkout counters to prevent the wait.
Katie and Gloria (Kriste’s mom) were such a valuable help as well. They assisted customers with their purchases, questions, and they worked on restyling areas that were picked apart.
And my dad ran the wrapping station again this year. He really enjoyed it. He’s become friends with so many of our regular shoppers and takes ironstone wrapping seriously.
Jonathan, a junior in high school from our church, and my husband, Jeff, were also there to carry purchases and help customers.
We had a great team and they all worked so hard.
Here are a few more pictures Brianna took of the space before the crowds hit…
I didn’t even realize how much we sold until the late afternoon when people started picking up their purchases and we started to rearrange. We were running so low on furniture that we had to load up one of the shoe carts and take the price tag off of it, so it wouldn’t sell.
A lot of this ironstone was sort of hidden in a pie safe, but once we moved it out, it sold late Friday and early Saturday.
We arranged and styled things the best we could, so customers could see what was left. We really did have a lot left, it just wasn’t a lot compared to the size of our tent and how it started at the beginning of Friday.
We also knew it was going to rain, so we kept that in mind.
As I shared in my Friday night post, we sold more in that one day than we did all three days last year. It’s clear now that I didn’t need to be nervous about selling enough pieces on Friday, so I could fit everything under the tent for the forecasted rain.
But, as they say, hindsight is 20/20.
Once all of the furniture and accessories were inside the tent poles and the market was officially closed for Friday, Jeff and Jon put the tent sides on while the girls put plastic over the bed, linens and other pieces we didn’t want to get wet in case of leaks.
We were all totally drained and still a little stunned by the craziness of the day. I was honestly so thankful that Friday was such a big day, even though it pretty much wiped me out, because the forecast for Saturday wasn’t good. Friday might be all we really had.
Day two was just a short night and an early morning away…
PS – If you’re the woman who bought the glass cabinet, please send me an e-mail! I tried to find you after it was taken to your car and I wasn’t able to locate you again. (firstname.lastname@example.org)