Craft Fair Success!

Happy Sunday evening! I wanted to pop in earlier and tell you how my craft fair went yesterday but I had to get the house in order first. I vacuumed, mopped and scaled Mt. Washmore and I am pleased to report the place is clean and neat and I am relaxed and happy. Before I get to the nitty-gritty I want to remind you that you still have a few hours to sign up to win a stamp from about Art Accents, just leave a comment on last Monday’s post.

OK, folks, I luckily took some photos Friday night when I set up because I was way too busy on Saturday to take any. Here is a look at the front of my table:

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I scored the same corner spot I got last year (and have requested for all future craft fairs) so I had a lot of display room! At the corner of my booth I put a rack of mounted/matted watercolors, all original, and they sold like freaking hotcakes! I priced them cheap, $15-$30 but I am a fast painter so it works for me:) I even got 3 commissions! BTW my hubby built me this print rack years ago when I used to do sidewalk art shows.

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I was stressed all week that I did not have enough product for the fair, I crafted like a mad woman and I was still afraid I wouldn’t fill my table. 20 minutes into setting up I realized I had way too much to fit on my table and I had to run home and grab something else to put stuff on, I had this garden cart in my cellar and I hauled it to the fair. I like it!

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You haven’t missed any tutorials, many of these projects I made this week and I will be sharing the tutorial later. Like the one for hand warmers. I sold the for $3 a pair of 4/$10 and they seemed to be a hit! I have so many baskets of finished cards that I rotate around to different shops and I grabbed them all for the sale. I scored this card rack for free because the cards were discontinued and the slots are 7″ wide and that accommodates all of my cards (although some might have to be sideways…LOL…oh well, beggars can’t be choosers!) I put small dumbbells in the bottom of the stand to weight it so it would not tip over and cold-cock any of my potential customers 🙂 Oh and the tall white spinner stand (also a freebie) holds my kids handmade jewelry 🙂

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My earrings were a big hit, they were $5 and sold like the proverbial hotcakes I mentioned earlier.  People really liked the x-mas earrings too, I offered them at 3/$10 or $5 each…not each, a pair…who need 3 earrings?!?

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I think $5 must be the “sweet spot” for craft fair sales, the juggling kits were $5 too and I sold all but one set!

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But hey, I did give free lessons!

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Who is that crazy girl? I juggled off and on (mostly on) the entire day between ringing up sales that were surprisingly brisk! I think I had a dumb grin on my face the entire day, “They like me, they really like me!”

Of course they might just be wondering “Who is that crazy juggler chick in the Santa hat?” but whatever, it brought them into the booth, now didn’t it. Another conversation starter was the wine bottle display…not sure how effective it was because I did not sell a single piece of jewelry displayed on said bottles but again it made people stop and take a closer look and then they noticed my wine bottle bottom candles. I sold most of them too and I considered not bringing them because I though people would think they were tacky (personally I think they are chic)…I am obviously very concerned with what people think of me…NOT!

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Apparently people bought the candles for gifts. I brought tiny alpha stamps so I could personalize the wine labels…I did not thing to bring another table so I sat on the floor and stamped…not a new thing for me…people thought I was quirky and delightful…or maybe just weird…

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The gift bags that I made in this post were surprise grab bags filled with jewelry I was too lazy to repackage with my snazzy new ATC card labels. I optimistically priced them at $10 but dropped the price to $5 a couple hours into the show when there were no takers. Again, $5 is the sweet spot I think. I sold all but 4 of the grab bags…I though more people would like a surprise…huh.

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Oh, I made some goodies too and they sold out, I’ll be sharing the printable for the Santa S’mores later this week so you can make some too! I sold the S’mores for $1 and the pretzels for $2. The kids made the pretzels so they got to split the spoils 🙂 The lip balm purses were quick to make using my Nifty Gifty Template and I sold them for $1. All but 4 sold but I have an order to make more for a customer because I did not have the amount she needed. I made these for my daughters scout troop last year and they were a hit! Oh, in the upper right hand corner I have knot tying kits, they were a also hit and I sold almost all of them! I’ll have a video tutorial on that later this week.

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OK, lets get down to brass tacks. Sales were great! I’m not comfortable telling people exactly how much I sold but it was a couple hundred dollars more than I sold last year and the only money I had to shell out was the $25 for the space rental and about $22 for the ingredients for food goodies and lip balm and a few beads that I used for the xmas earrings.  I think the increase in sales this year had to do with the fact that I had some paintings for sale and they were more expensive. Also this being the second year of the show we had more traffic. It also helped that I offered a variety of items at a variety of price points. I had a hope in my mind to make a certain amount but I did not know if it was possible with mainly $1-$5 items but I surpassed my “pie-in-the-sky hope” by $58! Wow!

I was surprised that my Christmas cards did not sell at all this year when I sold out last year but maybe because this years fair was a week later had an effect (too late to send x-mas cards?) but my blank and occasion cards sold very well.

I didn’t need half of the boxes I brought my wares to the show in to bring them home in and after I unpacked the van I sorted and organized everything and packed it away neatly for next year. What was left fit in 2 crates! Hooray to getting rid of stuff! I hope I don’t sound like I am bragging, but it was a great day, I am grateful that people liked my stuff, it can be a little nerve-wracking to put your creations out there for sale, there is the fear that no one will like them or buy them but the payoff is great when they do. I can’t wait til next year! Thanks for sharing this adventure with me and til next time happy crafting!

 

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My first Craft Fair!

Yesterday I had my first booth at a craft fair. I was so excited to try it. The local parent teacher group had put on the event so it was a great way to support the kid’s school even if I didn’t sell a thing…luckily that was not the case 🙂 I did GREAT! The kids did well too, the made lots of things for the booth from earrings to ornaments and they got to pocket some cash for their effort! Here is a pic of my booth:

Keep in mind all of the photos were taken with my point and shoot camera, with the flash on in a school gym 🙂

I used crates to add extra space for products and the different levels add visual interest:

Here were my best sellers:

Handmade earrings: $5 a pair, I decorated an old frame with scrapbook paper and cut a sheet of foam core (decopauged in sewing pattern tissue) to fit inside and tacked the earring to it:

Notice the tacks (push pins) I took clear flat marbles and glued scrapbook paper to the back and glued the embellished marble to the tacks. They were very pretty and I sold the tacks for .25 each, I made marbles in the same fashion and sold them for .50, they were easy to make and great sellers! The Magnets sold better tho, I displayed them in a tin:

My mom makes beaded ornaments and they also sold well at $2-$8 each!

Chocolate covered pretzels: $1 for 3 in a bag (SOLD OUT!)

Paper Snowflakes (You can buy mu SVG die cut here) $3 each. They were a double whammy because they drew many people into my booth to see what they were made of:

Homemade Lip Balm in a paper purse: $1 (The template for the paper purse is in my set Nifty Gifties and you can cut 6 from a 12″x12″ sheet of paper), Paper bag Pins: $2, Heat packs: $5, and campfire starters: $1.50

Soap: $2-$4 priced by weight, the most popular variety were the toy soaps and the green tea and mint bars.

Holiday card multi packs: $5-$10 for sets of 2-6 cards. Break out your stamps and have fun making quick cards (it beats Hallmark any day!) I’ll be sharing my quick and easy cards I made later this week 😉

Craft Fair Tips:

  1. Price Everything! I cannot tell you how many booths did not have prices on their stuff. Why not? Most people will not ask the price and if they do and they are not in line with their expectations they will not buy it. If you are not pricing your items it is foolish.
  2. Talk about your crafts. Especially if you have a higher priced item. Are your candles made from soy wax? Well, talk about it, if the high quality of your products means the price is higher explain the benefits of the materials you use. People love it when you talk about the product, make connections.
  3. Have a variety of items. I only sold a few candles but there were two other booths selling only candles. Luckily I had a variety of items to sell at a variety of price points.
  4. Package your wares gift ready. I put pretty tags on my products and I wrote the price in pencil so it can be easily erased for gifting. A pretty stamped tag with ribbon or twine looks boutique and expensive and will delight your customers.
  5. Have a clean organized booth and take time with the set-up. My table is 2 saw horses with an old luan door on top. I place a couple of bed skirts on top and then a length of fabric on top. My set-up was free and down-homey. Perfect for a craft fair. The crates I lugged my products in with became part of my display as well.
  6. Get tips from an experienced exhibitor. My friend Cindi took me under her wing and gave me some great pointers. She also had the cutest bags for her stuff, she stamped a big snowman on brown paper lunch bags and they looked so much better than my recycled plastic shopping bags 😉

Here is a pic of Cindi’s booth, we set up side by side so we could share the Christmas tree:

My niece Sarah had this table, I love her jar of branches to display her jewelry!

If you are selling at a craft fair this season I wish you the best and I hope I gave you a fe ideas of what worked for me! Thanks for stopping by and til next time happy crafting!

 

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