Industry News

Lost in Space: #SIA16 Booth Design

February 9, 2016 | 0 Comments

It’s hard to believe that another SIA Snow Show has come and gone.  Yet, here I sit, bags unpacked, going through my pictures from Denver. As I sort through my photos from the show floor, I focus my efforts on pinpointing common themes that start to emerge in the form of color, texture and space. 

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For me, the 2016 SIA Snow Show was a bit like a Las Vegas all you can eat buffet – that is, a little of something for everyone. 

Some booths didn’t change much from last year. Some booths changed a lot.  But what I found most intriguing was the overall use of space, in the form of large, grand gestures down to miniature, contained, controlled environments. This wide interpretation of defining space was at once captivating and inspiring. 


When you can’t go big, go up.

When retail square footage is limited, consider the floor and ceiling as ways to increase your store’s display capacity.  We often forget that these diametrically opposed areas can be used to help shoppers navigate a retail space with things like floor graphics and ceiling wayfinders.

So whether you are trying to save space (if you show booth is on the small side) or increase the sense of space, going up is a good way to go.

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Mannequins placed up high add impressive scale to a space. 

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If floor space is prohibitive, mannequin shells that lay flat against a wall offer another way of displaying product. 

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When you have a lot of the same item to display, like packs, going vertical creates a powerful, eye catching and colorful display.

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Take a cue from our friend Badgr, who has been setting up the SIA Backcountry Experience booth for years.  Airbag systems take up space but look cool deployed. Secure packs with zip ties.


It’s a small world, after all.

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Outdoor Tech didn’t have a lot of floor space in their booth but made excellent use of detailed diorama’s, each themed for a specific product category.  Featured above are their speakers (called Chips) made for ski helmets.

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The turtle shell speaker is the focus of this beach themed diorama. 

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Buckshot speakers are a great city bike accessory, shown here on the right.

 Space….the final frontier.

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Celtek used cardboard tubes cut in sections to stack and display their gloves and mitts.

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Smartwool made clever use of their booth space with this long, communal work table, complete with a center trough stocked with ice and beverages.

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 Smartwool bordered their booth space with a defining graphic hung from the rafters.  

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Sometimes you just need to fill a space.  These Atomic branded crates fit the bill.

The SIA Snow Show is always a wonderful opportunity to witness great design cues and visual merchandising tips that you can take home with you. 

Over the next few months I will be sharing more great finds from the Denver show that you can use all year long.

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