craft fair report

You know what?  The craft fair was a lot of fun.  Know what else?  I kinda, sorta, almost sold out. Which isn’t terribly hard to do when you only bring 20 some odd items to sell.  But still.  I was really happy about the outcome and enjoyed the whole experience.

Here is why it was a successful day for me:

:: I received a ton of great advice from all of you.  A big huge THANKS to those who popped in and commented on my last post.  The comments on that particular entry are a great resource.

:: I had fun because I was in good company and had friends with me to hold my hand. I shared a table with a photographer friend and was sitting nearby an artist and jewelry-maker friend. (Her blog recap is here.) Their support and friendship made all the difference. And by sharing time at the table, neither my photography friend nor I had to sit there all afternoon. {It was a half-day event.}

:: I priced things reasonably.  Curvy clutches were $25 and mini zip pouches were $5. I sold seven clutches and thirteen mini zips. I know that my time and effort plus materials was worth more than that, but this was my first time selling things and I really didn’t want to come home with a bunch of “inventory” for a shop that does not exist. That would have been bad for the crafty ego. I was a little bummed that my favorite clutch sold in the last hour because I would have like to have kept it for myself.  But that was a happy kind of sad, if you know what I mean.

:: I shared a table with a talented photographer whose note cards attracted tons of traffic.  Without her, I am sure that my wares would have gone less noticed.

:: I had a blast meeting my “customers.”  {I probably shouldn’t put that word in quotes because they truly were customers. But I felt like I was playing store all day, so I felt like they were just playing along.}  They were sweet.  They love and appreciate handmade.  Some of them recognized the fabrics I used and mentioned the designers.  They had questions galore about process. How long did it take to make this? {The clutches–FOREVER.  The zips–no time at all.} Where did you get the clutch pattern? ( – It’s great.} How do you install the snaps? {Hmm. Let me try to explain!} Where do you shop for fabric locally? {Franklin Mill Store mostly} TALKING SHOP WAS SO MUCH FUN!

:: In a small way, I contributed to a good cause.  The only fee that vendors paid was a donation of handmade goods valuing $25 dollars for a raffle that benefited a group of college students who will spend their winter break in New Orleans helping with reconstruction efforts.  There was this one college student, who I am guessing was one of the students who will go on this trip, who spent a good amount of time at my table trying to decide which mini-zip pouch to buy.  You could tell she is the type who spends her money carefully. After a while, she settled on one and made her purchase.  At the end of the day when they picked the raffle winners, I waited around to see who won my clutch. This same young woman was still around.  When they picked her name out of the hat, she did a tiny little victory jump and then looked over at me and said, “I was really hoping to win it.” It was the sweetest thing.  Made my crafty heart all fuzzy and warm.  I’d make that girl a million clutches if I had the time.

:: I learned a bit about myself as a crafter.  I found that I actually do enjoy making things assembly-line style.  It takes a bit longer to get to the finished product, but when you are on that last step (for example, turning eight curvy clutches right-side-out), seeing the final items is even more exciting. It makes me understand why people like me have little online shops.  If you are making a gift for a friend, why not make a few more and pop them into a cyber shop?  There is very little overhead involved and if something is snatched up, you get to experience the rush of a sale.  Now I get it. I’m not saying that I will have a little shop of my own up and running anytime soon, but I think it could be in my future.

So that’s the rundown.  It was a good little experiment for me.  It made for a very nice afternoon.  I now know that when my family and friends graciously accept my handmade gifts, there is a good chance that they actually like them and that they are not just being polite.  I don’t know that I’d seek out another craft fair, but I do think I will sign up for this one again next year.


11 thoughts on “craft fair report

  1. The Wynn has the cutest bed with sheet pillow and comforter that any doll, stuffed animal and 4-5 breyer horses have ever slept in. It is part of our livingroom furnature.

    Cutest thing she has for sure. You could make millions on the bedding. never mind the princess and the pea.

    Thanks again

  2. enhorabuena por tus ventas, no me extraña que se vendiera todo a la vista de la foto! hohoho, mañana es Saint Nikolaus, hohoho, jeje, en Suiza el papá noel traía fruta, mandarina, castañas… y el 24 el niño Jesús traía los regalos, pobre bebé, tan pequeño y tan ocupado, jeje, mis niños ya me están volviendo locas con la lista de los Reyes, ains, besos!

  3. congrats! i knew they would love your crafts!!! We still have the beautiful aprons you made!! Hope all is well. Te echo de menos!

  4. it sounds like a fabulous day and a smashing success! yay and 3 cheers for molly! i wish i had been able to attend the fair and come across your goods. next: etsy!

  5. Congratulations, Molly! Glad to hear the fair went well! 🙂 Mine went well too. It was great learning experience.

    (And I enjoy assembly line crafting too! I have a hard time making just one thing now. I definitely think you should look into a little shop of your own. They are actually a lot of fun.)

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