You too can do our Covert Dressing Room Action! Just make your decals and head out to your nearest clothing store fitting room.
Three ways to make your decals:
- Make them yourself from scratch using the steps below
- Submit your email to get the designs our girls made and print them out
- Order them from our online store
Step 1: Get Your Static-Cling Decal Sheets
While you want to spread smiles and positive thinking, you also want your decals to be completely removable so as to avoid trouble for store clerks and other possible conflicts.
However, as the static-cling material is a bit pricey ($84.60 for a 100-pack of 8 1/2” x 11” sheets here.) and may supply you with more decal paper than you really want, you might want to look for smaller packs of static cling sheets at your local office and craft supply stores. Alternatively, you could easily hand make or color copy designs on paper and then use poster putty (an inexpensive, non-damaging material) to post them on mirrors.
Step 2: Design
Next, have a brainstorming session to come up with some positive phrases and cute compliments (or you can download ours here).
Tips for brainstorming: The media targets women of all ages and all sizes. Who you’re targeting (younger girls or older women, and the cultural messages they get about what characteristics make a “perfect” body) may affect your messages. Girls’ messages would be simpler and G-rated, of course, while older women’s messages might be more age-specific (8-year-olds aren’t as concerned with wrinkles.) Just remember to keep the messages positive!
After picking favorites (We know it’s really hard. We had to put it to a vote!) and making sure that each message can fit on a decal, it’s time to get crafty. Bring out some thick paper, markers, pencils, scissors—anything you want to use to write and decorate your messages. We used thick paper and permanent felt-tip markers with different tip sizes.
Tips for making decal designs: Make it bold, and try to use bold colors, not light colors like yellow and orange.
Whether you color it out on some paper or uncover your inner digital design genius, work towards designing colorful, eye-catching designs people will be sure to notice! Make sure your final design is readable and that its size is reasonable. You want people to notice the decals, but they don’t need to be gigantic.
Step 3: The Production Phase
Once you have your final designs, it’s time to transfer them to the decal paper.
High-tech method: We scanned our hand-drawn designs and arranged them so that all six designs could be printed on one standard 8.5” x 11” sheet. That’s what you can download here.
Low-tech method: Draw your own designs right on the decal paper with a permanent marker and let them dry. This takes more design time, but if you don’t have the computer equipment or the right software, it’s a great option.
Then, of course, cut them up with either a paper cutter or scissors.
Step 4: Plan Your Action
Dedicate a day to putting decals up in fitting rooms, or just take decals along with you whenever you are actually shopping. (We suggest making a day of it for greatest impact and the most fun!) Locate your nearest shopping destinations and research their hours of operation and the businesses that you want to put up your decals in. Pick a date for your action, preferably on a day when the stores are most busy.
The scale of your action will determine how many decals you will print and post. It’s fine to do this action by yourself (and would certainly take less coordination), but if you want your action to make a larger impact, find some friends and family to team up with. Call, post on social media, text, or e-mail invitations and information about your event.
Step 5: Go For It!
Go decal-crazy! We learned a lot about posting our decals successfully, sometimes the hard way. Here are some IMPORTANT steps/tips to posting your decals:
- Take decals into store with you, preferably in a shopping bag. Keep in mind that some stores ask you to leave large bags behind their counter. In this case, plan to carry decals in a coat, pocket, or small purse.
- Try on something in the dressing room (or at least pretend to).
- Find a good, visible spot on the mirror for the decal. But not so obvious that a salesperson will immediately notice it when clearing or unlocking a room.
- Unpeel the decal and stick to the spot. Make sure to smooth it out so that it will last! The decal works just like a sticker, but it has no adhesive, so it is easily removable and reusable.
- This is the secret agent part: Walk out fairly quickly so store staff don’t have a chance to confront you. And DON’T go back to the same dressing room!
- You can also put decals on other mirrors, or on windows. We suggest public bathrooms, especially ones that get a lot of traffic. Putting them up on mirrors in stores or on store windows are also options for the more sneaky, daring individual—but BE VERY CAREFUL if attempting this!
- If you’d like to, take pictures or videos of your action. You’ll have fun while doing it, and best of all, never forget your amazing work. About-Face would love to hear your stories and see you in action! E-mail us here to let us know what you did and how it went!
- Above all, have fun and be sure to soak up some compliments yourself!
Tip: We were surprised by how long it took to put up our decals – maybe three per hour. So be realistic when planning your time and the number of people.