Mannequin Madness wants to do make-overs of independent retail stores, like the home make-over shows on HGTV. We want a show, not just to sell more mannequins (well, yes we kinda do) but rather to boost the local economy. Let me explain.


The Scripps network produces a show called “Restaurant: Impossible” where a failing restaurant gets advice and a $10,000 makeover from a professional. The physical transformation of the restaurant – from the decor, to the menu, to the staff – was not only entertaining, but a teachable moment for any small business owner in the service industry.


The make-over caused the restaurant to attract more customers (and free local publicity). This created employment, generated taxable income for their county and avoided a potential restaurant closure which would have been a blight on the community. Everyone wins!
Restaurant owners have it easy compared to retail store owners, because they don’t have to compete with online shopping sites. Plus people tend to enjoy going out to eat, but shopping can be chore.  So retailers have to have compelling things to lure people inside their store.
Would you want to shop here?


Or here:


This thrift store in the photos above saw their sales skyrocket when they had a visual merchandising make-over. The popularity of our blog and Pinterest Boards has shown us that retailers of all sizes and industries are looking for visual merchandising  inspiration so that they attract more customers. Look at this MSNBC video about the window displays of a small gift store.
FYI – it is not just men, women and children’s clothing retailers that use mannequins. Here are examples of mannequins (or mannequin parts) at – shoe stores, bath and body shopsjewelry retailerslingerie stores,   bridal – you get the idea.
A very entertaining retail makeover show used to be on the BBC Mary Queen of Shops, about a retail guru who transform struggling boutiques in England. Our American version of that show would be like this:
 I would pull up to a retail store in my Airstream dubbed “Mannequin Madness Mobile” (thank you Shelia Coates, the branding expert from BeYourOwnBrandunlimited.com)


It would serve as my rolling office as well as a place to store props and tools – (perhaps mannequins tied on the rooftop?)
The Airstream would be equipped with the gadgets I currently use to collaborate with a design team.  (and boy do I have a quirky cast of characters to work with)


In addition to retail make-overs, here are some other visual merchandising show ideas
-seasonal window displays for the major holidays
-behind the scenes look of the creation of Christmas window displays at big retail stores in NYC
-budget friendly window displays you can create from recycled props and dollar store purchases
-design school students an opportunity to do a window display
What do you think? Would this show be something you would watch?

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9 years ago

This show concept is really great! I know a lot of retail stores that need makeovers!

Curious Jane
Curious Jane
9 years ago

Love the concept and would give anything to be your first makeover if this idea gets off the ground. Major help needed.

9 years ago

My girls at SEJ are constantly referring to our “reality show”…we have a busy store that is in the middle of a historic district…with a ready-made “cast of characters”…the SEJ apronologists refer to it as “the dysfunctional Mayberry”:)…

8 years ago

Hello – I have an awesome space inherited from my father that is in need of a makeover and would love to be on your ‘show’ – I think it would be a huge hit to have this type of show and you would have viewers galore. Think of all the small stores that can use tips and tricks in order to renovate spaces small and large. Let me know when you start your show – you might want to consider our space to showcase! Best of luck, I’ll be waiting to see it!

Judi Townsend
8 years ago
Reply to  Lori

We are still pitching the idea to various production companies, but they all want reality shows that are personality based versus learning

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