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Topic: where the f did i go wrong?.....or...... why was my booth such a failure?  (Read 4078 times)
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xdm
« Reply #20 on: December 14, 2013 12:12:46 PM »

I do formal alterations, t shirt quilts  and memory bears so a prom/grad show is just up my alley.    I am still stunned at $125 for 2 hrs.  uh....... no.
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xdm aka pnh aka......... Kip. www.pnhsews.weebly.com
shadojake
« Reply #21 on: December 14, 2013 05:47:18 PM »

I agree that $125 is way too high for 2 hours.  Booths here in non-juried fairs go for $50 for all day.  These fairs will typically have a mix of true arts & crafts and b/s.  So, I might be willing to pay $30 for a 2 hour event if my product and the show were a good match.
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God Bless,
Cindy

Given enough coffee, I could rule the world!
cindijh
« Reply #22 on: January 18, 2014 05:44:07 AM »

I am just getting ready to get back into craft shows after a hiatus of about 24 years.  It is intimidating but at the same time, there are so many more resources....including the biggie...the Internet.  I remember studying a book by Barbara Brabec (?) for hints and tips....ordering my supplies from a paper catalogue with black and white drawings to explain what I was purchasing etc etc.  my first craft show was a total bust but after that I had varying degrees of success. Several very successful shows.

The main reason I stopped doing shows is that my husbands job moved us yearly or even more often so finding shows was difficult.  I also had three kids right in a row and between child rearing and unpacking/repacking, time was in such short supply.

Now those three kiddos are all grown...but the youngest is in college and that was what inspired me to get back into this. The college fund.  I work full time as an administrative assistant for our local health system. So this is not a full time endeavor.

Finding shows is much easier.  I've applied for several spring shows (schools....that have held the shows annually for quite a few years) and a couple summer shows.  Have a few leads on getting into some waiting list only christmas shows.

I have a couple questions for the folks who do a lot of craft shows....

How have shows changed in the past 20 years?

I hand sculpt and paint polymer clay whimsical figurines. I make some into jewelry but not beaded type jewelry so I am not a jewelry booth. Christmas ornaments, nic nac type stuff. When I did this 24 years ago I was a novelty because most people had never heard about sculpey or polymer clay.  Molds and extruders and the variety of clays and supplies did not exist then.  Are there many polymer clay vendors at the shows you sell at?

And pricing....how has inflation impacted craft show pricing.  For example....an item that I sold for $3 24 years ago should be priced at what these days?

Any advice/insight/observations would be helpful. 

Cindi....
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Chris in VT
« Reply #23 on: January 19, 2014 04:48:19 AM »

Shows have definitely changed! Today the biggest problem is buy/sell merchants. It was a problem back then too, but today it's become a major concern. So expect to see China stuff at the shows you signed up for.

Polymer clay showed up en masse about 10 years ago and died down just as quickly. I do shows with one person who is quite successful, but she has a specific product line. And she has cultivated a following at the shows. I've done shows with them for almost 10 years now, and they're still going strong.


As far as prices, what sold 24 years ago at $3 has gone up. Right now I would Google the inflation rate since 1990. That would be at least a starting point. At the shows I do, nothing is sold for $3.

Below is a website for a promoter I do a number of shows with. This is a listing of exhibitors who did a show in November. If the name of the exhibitor is in green, they have a website, so you can go and research prices of work today.
http://www.castleberryfairs.com/exhibitors/show232013.php
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There's NOTHING at a craft show, or on Etsy, anybody NEEDS. NOTHING.
www.shadypinestudios.com
cindijh
« Reply #24 on: January 20, 2014 03:14:43 AM »

Thanks for the info. I couldnt seem to find a link to any of the websites though.  Am i having a duh moment?  The variety of items was impressive!

Do you think etsy is any kind of a pricing guide....even though prices vary wildly?

The polymer clay figure you posted is lovely....but my style is more "cartoonish" for lack of a better word.  I also hand paint all the eyes. In all the pages and pages of polymer clay on etsy, I did not see anyone who drew eyes on their creations. People used to ask me if the eyes were stickers.

Cindi....
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Chris in VT
« Reply #25 on: January 20, 2014 03:57:27 AM »

When you go to the Castleberry site, some exhibitor's names will be in green, and some in black. The names in green have a website. So just click the name.

What part of the country are you in?
« Last Edit: January 20, 2014 03:58:37 AM by Chris in VT » THIS ROCKS   Logged

There's NOTHING at a craft show, or on Etsy, anybody NEEDS. NOTHING.
www.shadypinestudios.com
cindijh
« Reply #26 on: January 21, 2014 02:30:00 AM »

I live in north central Pennsylvania. Williamsport.  I did shows in Iowa and Michigan 25 years ago.

Cindi....
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Chris in VT
« Reply #27 on: January 21, 2014 03:55:59 AM »

We did the Covered Bridge Festival at Knobels Amusement Park for a number of years. All I can say about that show is: "WOW!"

THIS ROCKS   Logged

There's NOTHING at a craft show, or on Etsy, anybody NEEDS. NOTHING.
www.shadypinestudios.com
cindijh
« Reply #28 on: January 21, 2014 06:37:57 PM »

I saw that show listed on pa vendors.  Thought about it. i think knoebels hosts a multi day event too and also the covered bridge festival you mentioned (which if i recall correctly is organized by the city or someone...not knoebles) there are always a ton of people at knoebles...and it is always so hot.  When I think of knoebles I think of HOT HOT HOT. It is less than two hours from me. My daughter lives abut half an hour from there. 

I did figure out how to work the links....duh. I was surprised that a lot of vendors do not have websites. 

Cindi....
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Chris in VT
« Reply #29 on: January 22, 2014 04:03:52 AM »

The Knobels show is right after the Bloomsburg Fair. So the weather is very nice. It's put on by the Columbia Montour Visitor's Bureau.

Here's the site for the show.
http://www.itourcolumbiamontour.com/events/covered-bridge-festival/

Knobels was rated the number one family oriented amusement park in the country. I like no admission fees, and you pay for the rides you want. We used to live in Pa (the Poconos) and would go out there a couple times a year during the summer and do the show in the fall.

But I do hate the heat, so my wife and I moved to northern New England, where it only goes to, at the most, the low to mid 80s during summer. The downside is that right now outside it minus 12 degrees with a wind chill of minus 25. So we stay inside with the woodstove blazing away.
« Last Edit: January 22, 2014 04:08:31 AM by Chris in VT » THIS ROCKS   Logged

There's NOTHING at a craft show, or on Etsy, anybody NEEDS. NOTHING.
www.shadypinestudios.com
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