Bakers Journal

Concepts for Success: Seven ways to give your bakery a new look on a tight budget

April 4, 2022
By Diane Chiasson

You can expect to see an increase of two to six per cent in sales following minor remodelling

If you are a bakery owner, you know how fierce the competition is out there to get customers’ attention. 

You have to think about the first impression you want to create for your customers the moment they walk through your door. Next, think about the appearance of your building, furniture, counters, and staff. Updating your look doesn’t have to be complicated or costly. Just making a few small changes will change how customers perceive your bakery.

Here are seven easy and simple ways to give your bakery a new look on a tight budget.

1. Create a great entryway
Make a great first impression. Your ideal design should first integrate the exterior appearance. The exterior of your bakery is the first thing potential customers see. Improving your front entry and creating a better first impression can be done on a budget. Be sure that your entire exterior is clean and well-identified with some branded signage. If budget permits, add some landscaping.


Make sure the inside and outside of your bakery’s windows are washed regularly. It will not only be easier to see out of your windows, but it will also allow your passersby to look in and see your bakery space and products.

Give your exterior facade a fresh coat of paint. It’s amazing how a quick coat of paint can make a bakery look fresh and inviting. Next, see if you need to add a new front entry door. Finally, add additional lighting and signage, but above all, add something unique about the entryway to catch the eye of your customers.

2. Modernize your decor by updating your inside colours
Old and chipped paint will make your bakery look run down and tired. Painting is one of the easiest and less expensive ways to change the look of your bakery. Simple changes like adding a fresh coat of paint, eye-catching wall art and crisp white shelves will go a long way. Scrape off old paint and replace it with a coat of fresh paint that complements your concept and matches your existing decor and brand. Try creating an accent wall by painting one wall with a bright colour to draw attention and give your bakery a more modern look.   

3. Improve your lighting
Changing or updating the lighting and amount of light in your bakery will greatly impact your bakery ambience right away. First, check to see if your lights are too dim or perhaps you don’t have enough lights in the right places. A darker atmosphere may be less inviting unless that’s what you are trying to create. Just remember that the type, size, and style of your lighting should tie into your bakery’s overall theme. More light will give your bakery a bright and welcoming atmosphere and ensure that your customers can easily read your menu. You can also adjust the natural light coming into your bakery with curtains and blinds. 

4. Rearrange your space
Using the furniture that you already have and rearranging your tables, chairs and wall units in a totally new way can make a new space. Switching up seating would be a principal part of low-budget bakery design. Is your bakery too cluttered? Are you making the best use of the space you have, and is there dead space that you could better use? Pay attention to the small details when decorating on a budget. 

5. Fix, paint, replace outdated counters, walls & furniture
Carefully check for any cracked, scratched, chipped, outdated or clunky pieces of furniture, wall units and counters. Visit antique shops, flea markets, second-hand stores or go online to search for eclectic furniture and display items. It’s easy to find suitable furniture pieces that are modern, attractive and budget-friendly. Minimalist, inexpensive shelving makes it easy to add function and style to a modern interior. 

6. Hang artwork on your walls
Why not turn your bakery shop into a part-time gallery? You could have an eye-catching wall by showcasing the artwork of local or lesser-known artists. It will not only enhance your eating experience but also support your community. What about bringing a little touch of nature inside your bakery with a one-of-a-kind piece of wall-hanging art by drying your beautiful leftover loaves and rolls thoroughly and preserving them with lacquer to block moisture. You could then have a large piece of plywood covered with jute and collage these loaves of bread interlaced with dried wheat stalks, bunches of dried grass, seeds and flowers, raffia, a little glue, and a touch of acrylic spray – and voila!

7. Move outdoors
During COVID, many bakeries and bakery-cafés made use of their outdoor space. If you have access to an outside area, you must take advantage of it to provide your guests with safe seating. Just remember that whatever you do, it should complement your interior space.

Diane Chiasson, FCSI, president of Chiasson Consultants Inc., has been helping foodservice, hospitality and retail operators increase sales for over 35 years by providing innovative and revenue-increasing food service and retail merchandising programs, interior design, branding, menu engineering, marketing and promotional campaigns. Contact her at 416-926-1338, send her an email at , or visit

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