"Your work is beautiful"... that's the dream reaction isn't it? Standing shyly behind our craft stall, after weeks of stress and working crazy hours we just want people to love our precious creations!...... oh, and we want someone to buy them too! That's the icing on the cake.
I wonder if our potential customers realise all the work that goes on behind the scenes preparing for a fair - or whether they think we just pop a few things in the car and turn up... if only they knew the truth.... so if you're reading this as a visitor of craft fairs.... do keep reading. I hope you'll find it interesting!
When I did my first craft fair it was a baptism of fire - I organised the event and launched my handmade business all in one go! As a result I was desperate to gain as much insight into craft fair success as possible - I read every blog and studied every image on Pinterest that I could find that claimed to hold the secret of successfully organising or attending an event. I looked at established craft fair websites to learn how they attracted and selected quality stallholders and then modelled my own event and website accordingly, despite it being a small affair, nestled in a gorgeous little village in West Yorkshire, UK.
How did it go? Well I guess I wouldn't be writing this blog if it was a flop, I'd be off licking my wounds somewhere instead!Of course I made mistakes and there were things I would have done differently with hindsight, but overall the fair was a great success, far better than I could have hoped for. We had high footfall, a beautiful venue and a host of happy visitors and stall holders. I loved having my own stall and meeting customers who wanted to buy my creations. I also found that I loved meeting other stall holders, networking and sharing ideas with fellow creatives. Needless to say, after just one fair I was hooked!
On the back of the event I launched my Etsy shop, Holmemade With Love, which I'm really enjoying developing and I have subsequently extended my circle of creative entrepeneurial friends considerably. Sharing ideas, issues and challenges with like minded folk who are also pursuing their dream is a great support.
There are lots of posts on the web about craft stall designand I've probably read most of them.... but there are far fewer about general preparation setup. I can’t promise to offer anything new.... but for what it's worth..... this blog post is my two penneth. I've tried to cover everything I wish I knew, before my first fair! I've split the article into two parts.... to make it easier to read & digest over a cuppa. I hope you find it useful!