Studio M has never been afraid to take a risk. When owners Sue and Curt Todd started the company almost 30 years ago with their trademark favorite, Magnet Works MailWraps, they were the first to ever step into that territory. Fast forward to today, and the St. Louis based company is now a staple in the home and garden industry with over 75 employees, twice as many independent artists and even more customers who love their brand. In order to reach their brand to new heights, Studio M has expanded their product line this season to include new gift items such as tote bags, scarves, journals and mugs just to name a few. The OneCoast Visual Merchandising team had the pleasure of making this transition a dream come true. Here’s a sneak peek of what we were up to this season.
Each show set-up starts with a creative brainstorming session with Tammy Hickle, Studio M’s Executive VP of Sales and Marketing, who works with the visual team each season to help execute the brand’s vision
months ahead of time through conference calls and line sheets. After being provided with the details of Studio M’s new look, and inspiration pictures to steer us in the right direction, we toss around ideas and make a solid game plan. That’s when the fun and hard work really begins.
The new product line features lots of nature inspired collections, and we wanted to highlight these and make them the focal point. We began the transformation by sourcing anchor pieces that represented the natural, garden feel of the products such as galvanized metal and wood tables as opposed to the whimsical and colorful displays Studio M is known for. We added in greenery like eucalyptus, cacti and succulents, which are very on trend in home décor to help the space come alive and tie in the themes of Plant Lady and Garden Dirt.
Birds, which have long been a favorite for Studio M lovers, were next in line to be merchandised. This collection received a makeover in a major way in the form of artwork, totes, sun-catchers and more with two new lines Bird Nerd and Field Guide. Like the other collections, the team wanted the products to speak for themselves, so the merchandising was minimalist and clean.
Not all the projects were this simple though. OneCoast Director of Visual Merchandising, Tahyna Douglas, believes in making magic happen, and that often means building eye-catching sets from the ground up. The three biggest projects of the season took place in The Gardens, where we built most of the vignettes from scratch. OneCoast Assistant Manager, John Ludlow and team member, Luis Cabrera hand-cut pieces of tin to create the roof on the display, affectionately named the SheShed that houses the new Eucalyptus Gardenl ine, in addition to the Seasons of the Heart and burlap wall hangings.
Lastly, we created the birch fixtures for the Elements area. Each one of the birchwood stands and shelves were made by hand to make a simple but beautiful, natural canvas for this ethereal and colorful new product line. The execution of the idea went through many trial and error phases as we played around with multiple ways to assemble the stands and what the final product should look like, but ultimately we ended up with a picture-perfect display that our team has fallen in love with.
Overall, the OneCoast Visual Merchandising team is super excited about what we dreamed up this season, and hope the 2019 January Gift Show attendees enjoy the new Studio M as much as we enjoyed making it. See you next show!
Written by Ashley Thompson, OneCoast Visual Merchandising Liaison