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Budget Friendly Dispensary Design

Sungrown Studio; Potters Dispensary

Nobody likes the B word, especially when trying to put together a gorgeous, profitable, shoppable, luxe dispensary. (I’m talking about the budget) You might feel like it can’t be done, or maybe it could be done if you had 10 months to search and search for good looking budget fixtures. Or maybe you have the time but you’re worried the quality won’t be there. Whatever your pain point is, we have four simple DIY tips and tricks to make a stellar shopping experience for your customers:

  • Plan ahead
  • Best sources for lighting
  • Make the most of your budget with flexible fixturing
  • WOW looks for less

PLAN AHEAD. Seems like a no brainer, but with a little pre planning you can save more than just time. Many vendors offer quantity discount & free shipping (if it’s not a rush job). Taking the time to call and ask for discounts and really pay off, especially if you have multiple locations you are opening or updating.

Planning ahead also means having a solid floor plan before spending money on fixtures, furniture or anything else going into your space. Knowing exactly what type of fixture needs to go where, what it will do for you and how many you need before you start buying is crucial to avoid ‘oops’ purchases and impulsive over spends. “Oh right- I only need two small display stands for the merch by the cashwrap.”

Sungrown Studio, MCM Dispensary

Light Sources

You’ve heard me talk about dispensary lighting specifics before. Lighting can be a huge budget breaker or maker. Lots of factors go into picking the right fixture- style is just a tiny piece of it. When budgeting for lighting make sure you’re looking at the lifetime cost as well as the initial. If that gorgeous chandelier over the bud tables has 65 tiny wattage bulbs, you’re going to be buying speciality bulbs and replacing them constantly. Go green. Look at LED wherever possible and make sure the color temp and output (lumens) is what you need and where. Some of our fave lighting sources for dispensaries are Lightology, Lumens and YLighting. These vendors have some great design in any price range and generally quick lead times.


As your dispensary grows, morphs and evolves, it’s handy to have fixtures that can keep up with you. This means maybe instead of purchasing a totally custom, built in fixture, you do moveable tables or floating shelves. Instead of buying a custom height table, use risers for product displays. Merch walls are awesome examples. Something flexible that can be reconfigured periodically as your offerings change is the goal. You’ll never have “holes” on your shelves and can resize up or down by adding or subtracting a few pieces. Display Dispensary is a good source for configurable merch walls.

Wow Looks

If your budget is less than 100k, you’re going to have to edit out the Chihuly glass ceiling installation you were dreaming of. That’s common sense, but that doesn’t mean you can’t have some select stellar pieces in your space that drop jaws. The selfie wall is a great place to make an impact on a budget. Living walls, applied murals, or even a local artist can make a boring wall profitable and under budget. (Think of your hashtag going out on every selfie.) If you’re going to spend a little more of your budget on a wow moment, make it pay you back in traffic. We recently had a client request a water feature in their space. Awesome! For a small additional fee we had their logo added. It becomes the focal point of the space and a brand recognition bonus. Check it out in our rendering-

Sungrown Studio, EH LO Dispensary

Not sure how to piece it all together? Don’t have the time to go after the look & quality you’re after? Have no idea where to start? Schedule a free Design Map Session with Melinda & see just how we work and how we create the most amazing dispensaries.