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Topic: Craft Show Pearls of Wisdom...  (Read 30209 times)
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Darkest_Faerie
« on: October 05, 2006 04:36:43 PM »

What do you wish you had known earlier about participating in a craftshow???

Share your pearls of wisdom here...

~Thanks!!!

-----------------------------------------------------------------
(I have to give credit to birdinaskirt for the pearls of wisdom idea.
She started the one that is in Crafty Business Discussion)
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« Reply #1 on: October 05, 2006 08:04:22 PM »

Pay special attention to the way the show is marketed.  Is it a flea/craft show?  Does the application allow for resale items?  If so, handmade items probably won't do well.

It is generally true that the higher the entry/booth fees, the better quality crafters, and thus the more customers who are willing to part with their money.

You don't have to give everyone a discount.

Toughen up for those inconsiderate people who scoff out loud and say, "I wouldn't pay THAT for THAT."   Good, just let them go to Dollar General.

Help all the crafters in the show by advertising the show yourself.  Mail out postcards, hand out flyers, post flyers, e-mail everyone in your address book, have a link to the show on your website. 

This one I know is vague, but make your display interesting.

I bet lots of folks chime in on this one.  It's nice to have the pearls of wisdom in one thread.

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« Reply #2 on: October 05, 2006 08:20:15 PM »

Don't over crowd your table/display racks with selling stock.  Put some out and replace as you sell the item.  Too many items just looks overcrowded and people won't see the one item that will catch their eye, therefore they won't stop to look.

You need something to catch the passers by eye, (preferably shinny) at waist level.  Most people are actually looking down when they are walking past craft tables.

Put like items in the same area, don't scatter them through your table/racks.  People don't want to have to look through you entire inventory to find an item they like in a different colour.

Professional looking package will also boost sales.
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MarketFolk
« Reply #3 on: October 06, 2006 12:48:40 PM »

There are a few things I wish I knew about...

 - Some markets have waiting lists, so be prepared to show them your work & go for an interview.

 - Rearrange you table during the day if sales are slow.

 - There are different types of markets / craft shows so make sure you choose the right one.

 - Know what you are selling, Why you are selling it and what makes your item more unique than others out there.

 - Always have enough stock on hand. You never want to get caught short.

 - Making your product at your stall gets people interested and asking questions...more often than not they will buy it.

 - Try & visit the market before booking a stall so that you can see the type of clientele that shops there, look at the setup & operation & talk to the vendor to ask there advice.

 - Be professional in the way you dress, even if it is just a car boot sale. People see you as a representation of your product.

 - Don't lower your price just to get a sale.

I hope this helps...

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pinkninky
« Reply #4 on: October 06, 2006 02:56:14 PM »

here are my pearls of wisdom!

+ bring a friend with you, so when you need to use the restroom/eat you can have a trusted person keep an eye on your stuff

+ tag everything. customers like having prices nice and clear, few will inquire about an item's price if it is not obvious

+ bring more stock than you think you'll need. you never know who is going to love what. for a particular show, i made some small, inexpensive coin purses, much to my suprise, they were a hit and i sold out!

+ never underestimate the convienence of rolling luggage. if your show does not supply flatbeds and dollys, rolling luggage is an excellent method of getting your goods from your vehicle to your booth without zapping your energy

+ if sharing a space with another crafter, discuss money handling BEFORE the show, and buy change (ones and fives mostly) the day BEFORE the show, so if the computers are down at the bank, its less stressful because you don't have to be at your booth that exact moment

+ get a good night's rest, and a good breakfast!!

also, my list of must-haves for shows:

promo stuffs: business cards, fliers, postcards, freebies
display things: of course! (think: large bowls, platters, acrylic risers, divided snack trays, etc. to keep your products off of the table, to create visual interest. i always place a shiny plate of pins (or anything small) at the edge of my table to catch people's eyes. they see the tray first ("oh, shiny!") and quickly see what i sell. this is when i start talking to them, and answer any questions)
signage: if you sell things that are impractical for tagging, and easier to group
bags for purchases
inventory list
about $200 in change
money apron (personal preference)
CHAIRS
nail clippers: for emergency hangnail removal
snacks
water
extra tablecloth(s): just in case / to use as a blanket / to sit on
mints: because minty breath is appreciated by everyone
allergy pills: because you never know what's going to be in the air that day, and you don't want to be out there with a runny nose all day!
free candy: for the kids
extra tags
pens & markers
receipt paper
mailing list sign-up sheet
clip board (i'm suprised i didn't write this in earlier, i always take my clip board!)
duct tape: you never know when you'll need it!
scissors
digital camera: so you can show your friends what they missed
trash bag(s)

For outdoor shows, also concider:
bug spray
clamps: to keep your table cloths in place if it gets windy
sunscreen & lip balm
extra tablecloths: for shade! create an instant wall on your canopy and stay cool
plastic drop sheets: in case the weather suddenly turns foul

and last but not least:

a cheery disposition and good attitude!

oh - and music! i bought a boombox purse just to take to shows so that everyone can listen to my ipod out there. i prefer to keep it under the table, pointed up, so that everyone hears the music. it drew people nearer too, because they were trying to find the music source! http://www.mosmyownspace.com/Merchant2/merchant.mvc?Screen=PROD&Product_Code=groove-master&Category_Code=music
« Last Edit: May 29, 2007 06:01:29 PM by pinkninky » THIS ROCKS   Logged

inhope
« Reply #5 on: October 06, 2006 07:40:27 PM »

OMG pinkninky about the allergy pills.
You don't know how many times I have gone to a show and forgot them and just ended up sneezing all over myself...especially when the shows are help outdoors in a dusty field ; )
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pinkninky
« Reply #6 on: October 06, 2006 11:03:23 PM »

OMG pinkninky about the allergy pills.
You don't know how many times I have gone to a show and forgot them and just ended up sneezing all over myself...especially when the shows are help outdoors in a dusty field ; )

! that's terrible! my first show was outdoors, in an area i was not familiar with. that day, my boothmates and i ALL had allergies in the morning, so i'm very glad that i had clairatin on me - it was a real life saver. especially since it was a 2 day event!!
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« Reply #7 on: October 23, 2006 03:26:49 PM »

Just to let you know pinkninky, I copied your list before packing for my show this past weekend, and it was a lifesaver! I packed too much stuff, but I didn't forget anything.....THANKS!
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pinkninky
« Reply #8 on: November 01, 2006 03:03:40 PM »

Just to let you know pinkninky, I copied your list before packing for my show this past weekend, and it was a lifesaver! I packed too much stuff, but I didn't forget anything.....THANKS!

YAY! that's great to hear! the list really seems excessive, but when you're out there, you realize that you need something, and you HAVE it - wow. such a relief, saves time, saves stress. i'm happy that my list is helping other craftsters be prepared  Cheesy
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Darkest_Faerie
« Reply #9 on: November 02, 2006 12:23:33 PM »

Your list is great! I'm using it to prepare as well.
I DO NOT want to forget anything for my craft show coming up on the 24th and 25th!!!
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