A couple of months ago, my friend, Molly, asked if I wanted to participate in a craft show with her. Neither of us had done one before, and we are both craftaholics, so of course I said yes!
We planned what each of us would make and then we spent the next several months crocheting, knitting, and sewing like crazy. Jo-Ann’s text and email coupons became life savers as I obsessively went to the store for more fabric and yarn. November came up so fast, and the craft show day went by even faster, but I was able to jot down some notes about things that I learned. I did so much research on craft fairs, and I read the same types of articles, but it was so helpful to read each one from so many different people’s perspectives, so I hope that this is helpful for first time craft fair vendors!
Know Your Audience
Think about the type of people who might attend the show you are vending at. Who would they likely be shopping for? Themselves? Their kids/grand-kids? What season is it? Are the holidays coming up? These are all important questions to ask, and while at one point I did, I didn’t actually execute a strategy around them.
One of the biggest things I learned was that I was majorly lacking in kids sizes in all of my products, especially crochet hats. I made Pokemon ball hats and headbands, and guess what…I didn’t make any kid sizes?! What on earth was I thinking? It seems so simple, but I completely messed up there.
Another thing that I did consider, but I never actually created any products around is the holidays. I knew with it being November that the holidays would be on everybody’s mind, but I didn’t realize how intense the holiday magic would be at everyone’s booth! There were many booths – granted they weren’t the crochet/knit booths – that had 100% holiday products. Consider the season when deciding what to make.
Do a Trial Run
I did a lot of research on craft fairs in the months leading up to it, and one of the best pieces of advice I saw was to do a test run of your set up. Holy cow this was so helpful!! It saved us time and stress from the night before/morning of the show. You will know if you need to add more height, if something is too cluttered, etc. Doing a mock set up of your craft fair display will also tell you if you have enough crafts. For my first time, I had no idea how much to make, and the internet wasn’t the most informative because it can vary so much from fair to fair.
Don’t Have High Expectations
Obviously I wanted to have a successful show, but because it was my first time and I’m not a professional crocheter or sewer, I just couldn’t have high expectations otherwise I’d be disappointed. So, I told myself that we would have fun. If we made some money, then yay! And we did have so much fun!
Have Fun – Seriously!
Speaking of having fun… 🙂 Honestly that’s the best part! I had so much fun talking to people passing by and who stopped. I can be such a chatter box. Molly and I also did some crafting too, of course. I taught her how to use a pompom maker and worked on my big stitch ottoman. We also walked around the venue to see everyone else’s booths. Just have fun!!
There was so much that I read and learned about before the craft show, and I did feel prepared going into it, but these were the major things that I wanted to pass onto any new craft fair vendors. If you have a few craft fairs under your belt, share some of your tips!