Updated: May 7, 2019

Mobile boutique on the ground

Mobile boutique on the trailer

Most people see my mobile boutique either positioned up on top of the trailer for travel, or set down on the ground. Far fewer people see the brief transition between the two positions.

Thus, a common and obvious question is: "How do you get the mobile boutique booth off of the trailer, lower it to the ground, and later put it back up on the trailer again?" My silliest response is that I spend a lot of time in the gym so I can lift it....very carefully.  

The real answer, though, is that the Shop On the Road team created a system of lift jacks to raise up the mobile boutique booth off the trailer and lower it down. The jacks are mounted on the four corners. Here's a pic:

Shop On the Road offers a system of lift jacks, mounted on the four corners, to lift the mobile boutique off of its trailer, set it down onto the ground, and later raise it up onto the trailer again

The lift jacks on my mobile boutique (the prototype) are easily manageable, but we're about to upgrade them. We're offering an improved jack lift system, with an electric control option, for future mobile boutiques that we build.

In the meantime, though, here's how it works: I crank all four jacks in one direction to raise the booth up a few inches, then I roll the trailer out from underneath. Then I crank the jacks in the other direction and lower the booth all the way to the ground. After the event, I reverse the process to return the booth back to the top of the trailer.

The lift jack system offers another very important function, also: I use the corner jacks for leveling, to adjust for uneven ground. Thus I can offer a completely level floor to my visitors. This is a great safety feature, not only a convenience. Few other outdoor exhibitors can match the safety of my Shop On the Road mobile boutique booth floor. Neither fashion trucks nor typical art show tents can be easily leveled.

In fact, when I participated in an outdoor art fair earlier this month, I noticed that all of the tents were set up on sloping ground, along the edge of the street. The slope presents some challenges to safe, easy strolling. In addition, the pavement had plenty of inconsistencies, cracks, etc. To make matters even worse, most art show visitors aren't looking at the ground in front of them as they stroll into an artist's tent. They are appropriately--if somewhat hazardously--looking at the art displayed inside. Typical outdoor art fair environments often create a likelihood of trips, stumbles and falls. I'm very glad that my Shop On the Road mobile boutique, by contrast, offers a completely level, even, stable ground for the safety of all visitors.

The mobile boutique jack lift system is thus extremely helpful for transitioning from the trailer to the ground, and also for safety during the event.

Questions? Want to order your own mobile boutique?Please get in touch.

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Handmade Business magazine is publishing a column this June featuring the Lost & Forged mobile boutique, which is the prototype of the Shop On the Road product.

The Lost & Forged mobile boutique won the Best in Show award for innovative booth design, among thousands of exhibitors at the NY NOW Winter Market last month. 

Here's a quote from the article:

I first met Douglas Heifetz this past February at NY NOW, the largest wholesale gift fair in the country. This sprawling show is famous for its many gorgeous, elaborately designed exhibitor booths. Walking the aisles is a sensory thrill. Amidst all the glitz, Doug's booth for Lost & Forged, his handcrafted metal-ware business, appeared surprisingly different.

First of all, his booth was clearly built, rather than staged. It had three rugged walls, a roof with skylight window vents, and even a short ramp that allowed easy access to the wooden floor, which was about six inches higher than the show floor...

Doug told me he envisioned [the mobile boutique] as a way to easily transport, display and sell his products anywhere, at outdoor fairs, pop-up shows and even indoor events. How ingenious! And so practical in today's tumultuous climate where so many outdoor shows are devastated by fierce wind and rain. Believe me, this booth...is far sturdier than any tent no matter how well it is tethered.

Click on the image below to read the whole article.

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Updated: Sep 11, 2019

The Shop On the Road Mobile Boutique is available for order now. With your own mobile boutique, you can exhibit your artwork and products in style at any festival, popup shop location, farmers market or convention center. Just drive to your new location and open up for business, without setting up a canopy tent, weights, walls, tables, shelving, banners, etc. Unlike a fashion truck, you can fit your Shop On the Road unit into standard 10x10 booth spaces at craft shows, trade shows, etc.

The standard package price is $8500.  The Art Show Upgrade package adds increased size and our jack lift system.

Get in touch to order your mobile boutique now or ask questions.

Here are some essential details -

Mobile boutique booth​ dimensions:

  • Length - 8' (10' with Art Show Upgrade)

  • Depth - 7.5'

  • Door opening width - 6'

  • Door opening height - 6'8"

  • Weight - approx. 1400 lbs (1800 lbs with trailer)

The standard package ($8500) includes:

  • Flat-bed trailer with 7 ft x 9 ft deck and removable hitch tongue

  • Electrical system - AC wiring with 3 standard outlets, basic overhead lights and light switch

  • Removable double doors

  • Classic corrugated steel exterior siding & roof

  • Natural cedar exterior trim

  • Plywood interior wall cladding & floor

  • Primed walls ready for paint

  • Ceiling with exposed framing

  • 3 month order fulfillment

  • Customer pickup within 20 miles of Silver Spring, Maryland, 20910

Art Show Upgrade package ($1500) includes:

  • Expanded length booth (10 ft long)

  • Jack lift system, operated by hand crank or handheld cordless drill

Other available upgrades include:

  • Financing through Behalf, up to 180 day repayment term at a low fixed rate

  • Skylights

  • Customized display space extensions: hinged display walls, porches, awnings, etc

  • Jack lift system

  • Finished ceiling

  • Painted interior - your choice of colors

  • ​Decorative overhead lights

  • Vinyl plank floor

  • Customized dimensions

  • Solar panel and battery system

  • Folding steps for on-trailer use

  • Trailer valet for easier hand maneuverability

  • Security cameras and alarm system

  • Rush order fulfillment

  • Long distance delivery, outside of the Washington DC area

  • Get in touch to order your mobile boutique now or discuss details.

Removable barn doors, made from cedar planks

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I'm the metalsmith/artist who dreamed up the first Shop On the Road mobile boutique prototype, for use in my own art business. Now I'm producing them for other artists and exhibitors.

Doug Heifetz

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