Sunday, December 6, 2009

Craft Show Recap and what I learned

This, being my first craft show, was a strangely nerve wracking experience. Having a very young shop, and never seeing any of my customers in person, I've felt quite the novice in the crafting world. Luckily, not only was this experience encouraging, motivational, profitable and just plain fun, I walked away from it with the feeling that not only can I DO this, I can do it successfully.
The craft show, or "Holiday Market" was located in a small bar in downtown Athens, the same bar where B and I met. This annual show is curated by Beth Cyr, long time sponsor and two time giveaway guest here at D&OC. The space is small and is definitely not your average craft venue...here's what my little table looked like:









Here are some unofficial tips on how to have a successful craft show:
1. Have your show in a bar where your boyfriend is the bartender so you're constantly supplied with drinks which will help you maintain a jovial attitude.
2. People who have been drinking tend to spend more money so if you happen to be selling your work in a bar, send your customers over for some egg nog...
3. Don't sit at your table with a frown on your face reading a book and ignoring potential buyers. Smile, answer questions, offer up interesting tidbits about your work and help the buyer see why your goods are worth buying.
4. Bring a friend who will help you package items, count change, keep you company, and make sure you haven't had too many spiked apple ciders. Then make sure to pay said friend if your profits are good (no one likes a greedy goose, now do they?)
5. Make sure you have plenty of business cards to pass out and include with any bought items. Remember, friends tell friends where they've been shopping. I understand business cards aren't cheap (although there are affordable options) but they certainly add a bit of credibility to your business and they tell people you're serious about your work.
Thank you to all those that came out to support the Holiday Market. Thank you to all of the readers and supporters of the my shop that gave me the encouragement and confidence to put myself out there.

{pssst. Have you entered the Flapperdoodle giveaway?}

36 comments:

Mary Jo from TrustYourStyle said...

Oh, wish I could've been there. Sounds like you survived your first show just fine--I remember how exhausting the first show I did was...it gets better! p.s. I just tweeted your new etsy shop finds--so cute!

xo

caroline joy said...

Love the tips ;) Never thought about a bar -- great idea! And I love your things -- too cute.

Iva said...

I'm so glad it went well!{although I never had the slightest doubt!} I love your unofficial tips...LOL....and your business cards really beautiful! ;) and THANK YOU for being such a great blogger/shop owner/ creative person/ idea sharer {lol} and friend.

Thrifty By Design said...

CONGRATS on your first craft fair! :-)

Oddly enough I just did my first craft fair as well. I'm glad you had a good experience... It's definitely fun and such a great feeling when people get excited about buying your pieces!

Here's to more in our future and many great craft adventures!
Denise

Claire Watkins, ASID allied said...

Congrats on your first craft show; love your little packaging on those multicolored tags!

Claire Watkins, ASID allied said...

Oh I know what else I was going to say-another tip is to get a cute dog. I have come to the conclusion that it is no coincidence that ALL antique dealers seem to have them. Never fails to bring me into their booth either-like a moth to flame.

pixelhazard said...

Oh your wares look splendiferous! I would have certainly bought something if I were there. My hair is in desperate need of some pretty clips

Diana said...

This is awesome! Your table looks so cool, I'd definitely go to you at a craft show! Congrats and thanks for the tip (although the bar part is a little out of our hands, lol)

Jena said...

Wow, it looks like there were some really neat things at the craft show; wish I could have been there.

Congrats! I am glad it was a success and great tips.

ChloƩ said...

seriously? your table looks amazing!! all your stuff is so cute!!!

Mod Podge Amy said...

So cool! I wish I could have gone.

I've always wondered about the craft fair booth book readers. Hard to tell if they want people to stop in or not! ;D

PetitPlat Food Art said...

LOL!!

I love the bar idea :D :D

Jessica said...

Craft shows are the best, and your set up was amazing!

PS: I love tip #1 good thinking!

Pippi Langstrumpf said...

Congrats Christina!

Your stall looked so lovely and colourful and cheery!

Being Brazen said...

The table with your stuff on it looked fab.

Nice tips

Have a fabulous Monday
x

eco-stylista said...

Hi Christina, congratulations on your success! You totally deserve it!

Kellie Collis said...

Look at all those lovely hair clips - so pretty! x

Laura Trevey said...

looks like a lot of fun!!!
very creative ~~

xoxo Laura

live a colorful life said...

Good tips. Sounds like it was a lot of fun. Your stuff is great! We haven't ever vended in a bar. The closest we came was last month when we were one of the stops on a "wine trail." It wasn't the greatest. Potential customers were mostly interested in their glass of wine and then moving on to the next winery.

Jaime said...

Nice set up you have and glad it was such a success!

stephchows said...

word of mouth marketing is the best kind there is!! your table looks AMAZING!!! I would have gone nuts if I was there :D

Stephanie said...

Great table display! I just started doing craft shows and I was really nervous too. But isn't it so fun?!?!? Way to go! And I love the idea of having it in a bar! Haha! Yup, get em' tipsy and they'll spend spend spend!

In Honor Of Design said...

Gotta love Athens. Love the look of your booth...totally would have come and shopped at it! BEst of luck to the future of your successful business!

Simply Mel said...

The dream venue for a craft show - a bar with flowing drinks! Brilliant!

drollgirl said...

perfect presentation! super setting! and you are FABULOUS, so of course it was a smashing success!!!

Absolutely Not Martha said...

fabulous tips--congrats on a successful first (of many) show!

Paige (Final Clothes-Out) said...

Your table was adorable! I haven't done any shows yet, but hearing success stories like yours make me excited to try.

Pixel Wild Child said...

Congrats on your success and thanks for your tips! The tables look so beautiful too

Sam said...

Your stall looks gorgeous!! :) I used to do shows but I'm having a break at the mo because I just used to get so nervous!!!

iheartkiwi said...

congrats on getting out there! it looks like it was a blast. i am always in awe of you crafty folks!

Nedda said...

Wow, I would have never guessed it was your first show! Everything looks so professional and lovely :) glad to hear you had a great successful show!

The Cottage Cheese said...

A craft show in a bar? Brilliant! I'm so glad your first show went well, wish I could have been there. Your table looked too adorable, with so many enticing goodies!

P.S. I'm so sorry I'm just now commenting. My parents are visiting, and that combined with having shipped nearly 30 packages over the past week has kept me tied up. I miss my blog friends :(

Hi, Lane said...

I'm glad you did well! I tried to sell earrings at $5 & $9 at the last show I did and people blatantly asked me when I was dropping prices. I ended up having to drop them to $3 and $6. It definitely turned me off. A friend of mine was selling 2" glass necklace pendants for $8 and not one sold (someone did actually steal one though). It was pretty ridiculous. Turned me off from craft shows for a while, at least until the economy picks up. I'm glad you had such a good time and made some $$ doing it!!

Down and Out Chic said...

hi lane! i find that very sad that people were complaining about the prices and that it's turned you off to craft shows. i always explain that i price my goods as reasonably as i can and that if they think they can find a comparable product at walmart, then that's where they should be shopping. crafters are not meant to compete with big corporations's prices nor were they meant to compete with dirt cheap goods. luckily, people were not upset about my prices...
do try again though! maybe a different location where people are used to shopping handmade would be better?

PS~Erin said...

Way to go!! It sounds like you learned a lot (love the tips). The table looked great too. Congrats!

Nicole @ Sew Much Sunshine said...

Just found this post via google & even though it was a long time ago, just wanted to say thanks. This is very helpful as I'm preparing for my first craft fair this weekend! eeek!

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