space planning & loading the truck for an antique market

Marian Parsonsbuying & selling antiques, Running a Business44 Comments

If you’ve been following my blog for even the past few weeks, you know that we’ve been getting ready for our biggest event of the year, the Lucketts Spring Market.

I’ve received a lot of questions about the process of packing up all of this stuff, so I thought I’d share a behind-the-scenes post on it.

It really is like moving a household.  We started packing up the small stuff a couple of weeks ago.  I set up a packing station in the middle of the studio with paper, boxes and shrink wrap.


I arranged furniture and collected breakable things that needed to be wrapped and packed and brought them to the reproduction shoe carts.  My mom then wrapped everything in small boxes and some of the market baskets I’ve been buying.


Once the box or basket was packed, I carried it over and added it to the “smalls pile”.  This is the stuff that I will take in my van, where it’s less likely to shift and get broken.


All of the furniture was lined up, so it could be out of the way as we worked on last minute things.


We wrapped all of the upholstered pieces in plastic and shrink wrap, so they are protected from getting soiled or dirty.


And we bagged all of the linens, quilts, textiles, pillows, and t-shirts.  Again, it keeps them clean as we’re transporting them.

I accidentally bought “white pine” scented garbage bags, so I apologize in advance if your t-shirt or quilt smells like artificial not-quite-white-pine.


Today, I needed to take some time to sit down and figure out how everything could be arranged in the tent.  I have a general idea in my head how things will go together, but I won’t be there when the truck is unloaded in the morning.

We’ve learned from previous years that it works for the guys to go down ahead of me, unload the truck, go out for a sloppy breakfast, and then leave me and my girls to unpack the littles and style the space in at an unhurried pace.  In order for that to work, I have to draw up a “map” of where to put the furniture.

Here’s a little video about the process…

I just gave you a snippet of the planning, but it was pretty much an hour or so of that.  Me looking at the paper, head in my hands, writing down pieces of furniture, numbering them, Kriste climbing over the pile to put a corresponding piece of numbered tape on each piece…

We realized that we have a lot this year and I was starting to think that my estimation of this stuff maybe, hopefully, fitting in a 20′ truck was pretty off.  Very off, actually.  We ended up getting a second, 17′ truck!


The second one isn’t anywhere near as full, but getting it took all of the stress of trying to figure out how to get everything down to Lucketts off of my shoulders.


I don’t ever recall my dad driving big moving trucks, so I asked if he would be comfortable driving it for me.  He laughed and informed me that he used to drive tanks, so he’ll be just fine.

As long as he doesn’t try to go off-roading in the u-haul…

The truck-packing went so smooth this year. I swear that every time we pack for an event, it rains.  Every single time.  If you’re local and need some rain, just ask us to rent a truck and pack it with furniture and antiques.  Guaranteed rain.

Well, despite a gloomy forecast, it just rained in the morning and cleared, so we were able to take our time loading and didn’t have to drape each piece in plastic and towels.  It was a little gift that made the process so much easier.

I usually don’t do two videos in one post, but I left the camera running as we loaded the truck, so you could check out our packing skills…

So, tomorrow we’re all driving down to unload and set up the booth.  Rain is forecasted again, but hopefully it will clear up, so we can set everything up and get some pretty pictures to share.

Lucketts week is in full swing…

space planning & loading the truck for an antique market

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44 Comments on “space planning & loading the truck for an antique market”

  1. What a wonderful team you have and what a lot of work is accomplished. Amazing. Best wishes to you all.

  2. I luv watching those videos! Every year I wait for the Luckett’s posts as it makes me feel like I am right there with you. The transformations, how the setup will look and your excitement for it comes through your writing. Looking forward to the Post-Luckett’s videos. Curious to know what people are buying up. HAVE FUN!!!!!

  3. LOVE these posts and videos….being a military brat and then a military wife I moved every two years of my life until I was in my late 30s! So “watching” you pack that truck was way more fun than packing that truck!!! Been there done that way too many times! I hope that the show is a huge success and the weather is great and you have the times of your life!!! Great posts for all of us to watch the process that is Lucketts. Thank you for sharing it with us. Can’t wait for the posts before during and after!!!

  4. I SO enjoy your video’s! I especially enjoyed this last “packing the trucks” video…I’m very impressed at the packing skills, but I did have to laugh at you…every once in awhile you would stand there with your hands on your hips…It was just exactly something I would do!!!

    I wish you the very best of luck at the sale…this is going to be your best one yet. I can’t tell you how much I wish I could make the trip from Maine…We just have NOTHING like this here…I’m envious of the people who can shop there! I’m also envious of you for all of your talent…I can truly appreciate how much work you put into this show and everything you paint/make/upholster, buy, clean, tag, pack, unpack and style…

    You are just so amazing to me on so many levels.

  5. Lots of gorgeousness!!!!!!! Praying for good weather, safe travels and a great experience for everyone!!!

  6. I love your posts! This show looks amazing and it’s located rather close to my Brother-in-laws place. Shopping your booth is on my “Antique/Vintage Shopping Bucket List”. We can’t make this year”s show, but I’ve already planned the trip for next year. Good luck! I hope it’s a sell-out and I wish you wonderful, sunny weather! Can’t wait to read all about it!

  7. Hi Marian, do your boys hang out with the guys? I thought I saw them briefly in the truck loading segment. What a great hands-on business learning tool for them. This also helps instill a strong work ethic!

  8. I love all this behind the scenes stuff and then getting to see the finished product in two days…hope there is a break in the clouds when you are unpacking!

  9. YAY God !! Soooo happy for you !! Gods blessings and best for you at Lucketts,,Sell to the walls !!

  10. I’m doing my first big show in October and am already dealing with the same issues as you, although on a smaller scale. I’ll have a 15’X15′ space and a 10’X10′ tent, so deciding what goes inside and what outside, and how that will look, is my challenge. Thanks for the great tips.

  11. I think that next year I am going to ask for a flight to Lucketts for my Christmas and birthday presents. I normally say I don’t want anything but I really want to go to it so I just may say something. Or, I’ll have to sell a lot of vintage furniture to be able to pay for it myself.

  12. Awesome, you should be great at the game tetras, lol. Great packing job, I know who to hire if we ever move, lol. Have a great time, wish I could go!! May the weather be good.

  13. What a fun post! Loved seeing all the behind the scenes action. And I loved the music in the packing video! Very Django-ish. Who is it?
    Hope you have a wonderful time…wish I could be there to buy it all up!

  14. Hi! Oh WOW! Love the videos and wow you got a lot in there, no space left lol! My Pop taught me how to pack that way! very scary…………… I love that! Best of luck with all your stuff! I know it will sell and FAST! 🙂 It is BEAUTIFUL!!!!!!! Oh how I wish I was there, the weather will be great! 🙂 Blessings………………….Kat =^.^=

  15. Wow, that some amazing packing skills! Such an organized well-oiled machine you run! Hope the show is awesome! You deserve all the good things that come to you!

  16. I am in awe of your packing skills! That was unbelievable! (I’m also in awe of your organizational and planning skills Marian!) You guys work hard and do an amazing job. You deserve everything good that comes to you. I’m so happy I found your blog in my Romantic Country magazine (Summer 2016) recently. I am enjoying watching you prepare for Lucketts and looking forward to hearing how it all goes!

  17. I can’t wait. Unfortunately I opted not to get tickets for Friday and now I’m kicking myself about it. I love the Lucket’s market!!!

  18. Well Marion, if packing your trucks means rain, you need to bring your truck and merchandise to Northern California! We could use a new vendor at one of our fun markets, and we really need the rain! You could kill two birds with one stone! (Just a thought!) God Bless!

  19. All the best, I hope all your hard work pays off and the rain stays away. Look forward to the upcoming posts as it makes us feel like we are right there with you, even here on the other side of the world!

  20. Loved the packing video! And my husband, who is a packing genius in his own right, was deeply impressed with your skills. Best of luck for a wildly successful sale!

  21. Great job packing! Would love to know where you got the garment rack that you have your garbage bagged linens hanging on? Thanks!

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