The benefit of pop-up shops in today's market

Nadine Sawyer shows off some of her work at her Moffat Beach pop-up shop.
Nadine Sawyer shows off some of her work at her Moffat Beach pop-up shop. Warren Lynam

POP-UP shops are perfect for our times.

On the one hand they help fledgling, sometimes online, businesses dip their toes in the bricks-and-mortar waters.

And on the other, they give landlords at least a few months' rent and something more interesting for window shoppers to look at than a for lease sign.

Nadine Sawyer opened her pop-up gallery at 45 Roderick St at Moffat Beach on December 5. It will close on January 31, and the experience is likely to spawn a more permanent space at a yet-to-be-found location.

The visual artist and designer, who studied art in Melbourne for six years, has also worked as a carer, teacher, event manager and florist.

She has lived and worked in such exotic places as Tokyo, the USA and Vanuatu and now finds herself living and painting in Caloundra.

She has sold her pieces - everything from tea towels, greeting cards and cushions to paintings, drawings, ready-to-hang linen prints and hand-painted ceramics - in galleries and gift shops in Brisbane, regional NSW, at Maleny's Giddy and Grace and online.

But she said it was time to see if her own space would be viable.

"We've had amazing feedback and sales in December were fantastic," she said.

"I stocked the gallery with my own work as well as from a few other artists I have collected along the way.

"I was just looking for a bit more exposure and thought we'd have a go ourselves.

"We have to pay rent but if you have your work in galleries, they take 40% of a sale. So it has made a difference to sell an original painting and keep the full amount."

Nadine is in partnership with her mum Joy, who left behind a hospitality job in Vanuatu to handle the books and sales at the pop-up gallery.

Nadine credits a New Enterprise Incentive Scheme course and the shop experience itself for teaching her the basics of business and how to properly price her own art.

She has been invited to run a smaller pop-up store in Vanuatu and will also show her wares alongside a painter and a toymaker at the Brisbane Botanic Gardens.

Topics:  nadine sawyer




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