Planning for Craft Show Success

Making crafts and getting them sold takes a lot of work and know-how. I have been at it for close to 20 years, in this article I will share my success story and how you can get to the next level. If you’re prepared to take the plunge, read on.If you’re considering your talents and what you might make that other folk may like to buy, this is the article for you. Perhaps you have already been in the business for some time, I hope you might find some information here that will be helpful for you to re-organize what you have already started. In this article will discuss, what to make, how much to make, and where are the best places to sell.

Step #1 before you even put saw to wood or brush to canvas, do your research. If you’re starting out or thinking, how can I succeed and sell some stuff, visit a show with more than 50 vendors and just stand around and look at what vendors are offering, and who is buying what? Maybe visit the show at various times of the day, and notice inventory levels and who’s walking out of the door with what items they may have purchased.

Additionally, fabric crafts have exploded onto the craft show scene and in my opinion have been overdone. Its ok but I recommend finding a niche, at the same show that I have set up at in the last few years, there must have been a half-dozen or so vendors selling fleece creations, blankets, sweater and dog warmers which I think went sort of slow for them. A lady who sold across from us at a Christmas show a few years ago was selling her fleece blankets for $20 each, sad to say, but I’m very sure she lost money. Last, remember people who come to these events do so for many reasons, some looking for idea’s, some for gifts, and some to spy.

 

Ok, let’s get to #2 and how much of your craft you should make? That depends on storage space and time. You need to have an ample supply to get you through the show schedule you arranged for yourself. I build inventory through the winter sometimes with the help of my family; my choice of craft is repurposed jewelry. But, you really need to consider your schedule and how fast things might sell and your turnaround time. Inventory is key, don’t get caught short or don’t make more than you can store.

Last but not least, look for and choose shows carefully. It’s been my experience that the lower cost entry fee, usually means poor spectator attendance or some other aspect to impact your sales. Shop around, churches and senior centers might be fun and enlightening but are generally slow venues. Near my home, we have weekend farmers market that features a ton of foot traffic, the charge a space fee of $25 and a small percentage of your overall sales. Also look on different websites that offer master schedules in your area or ask around at art and craft stores. I hope the information I provided will be of some help, we are in the process of writing more helpful tips to help you succeed as a side cash hustler.