Monday, 12 November 2007

Craft Fair tips

Righto, I now have my next gig booked, which will be at the Dingles in Dinas Dinlle on 9th December.

In no particular order, this is my list of tips for other craftsters:

  • Smile! Say "hello" to everyone (or "helo", or "bore da") and smile in a friendly and welcoming manner. It sounds obvious, but I saw a few exhibitors sitting reading the paper and not looking at all welcoming and "come-and-buy-something"-like.
  • Try to get some kind of unification on your stall. Group like things together. I make bags, and they are all different. In fact, I deliberately make them all different. The problem is that when displayed together they look a bit of a jumble (as you can see in my pic). So, now I'm going to go through my stock and keep the very striking ones for the web, Etsy or presents, and the ones that can be adapted to fit my style for the stall. Which leads me to
  • You need a USP (unique selling point). One of the problems I had was that at the entrance to my tent was a lady selling glorious bags, that all had her unique flower and button designs on (and she also has her work in all the local craft shops). Fair play, they were nice, and in any other instance I probably would have bought one. So then customers walked round a bit more and got to my jumble of stuff. NOT good! So, going off what sold well for me (lots of things with fabric yo-yo designs on) I can work out that what works is having something that stands out as identifiably the work of, for example, Marmadaisy.
  • Dress to suit you stall. The button/flower bag lady had buttons and flowers stitched on her top, and wore one of her own aprons. If you make jewellery, wear your own. I wore some hair clips of mine and a bag (and, at one point, a sock monkey). Be your own model. People struggle to imagine themselves using a product, so help them to see what it looks like "in situ".
  • Be flexible. I adjusted my prices slightly on the Sunday and did much better. Not that I was expensive to start with, but it just helped to make the decision to buy a little easier for some people.
  • Know your stuff. If you make it yourself this one is easy. You need to tell people about making it, where you get your materials, how many stitches in the embroidery, how many beads on the necklace, what the handles are made out of etc. Be really enthusiastic about what you've made. If you don't seem to love it, they won't either.
  • Take plenty of business cards. People might not want to buy something that day, but might think of you later if you give them a card. They are also handy to pass on to other exhibitors and event organisers.
  • Have a good price range. I sold absolutely LOADS of hair clips and carrier bag holders, and lots of smaller items that I didn't think would go. It's also nice to have something in everybody's budget, or something for kids with a bit of pocket money to buy.
  • Don't try to get all your stuff on your table at once. It's far better to have fewer items displayed clearly that squish everything in. I took things off my stall half-way through Friday, and again on Saturday and people stopped and looked longer and harder when there was less clutter. But don't make it too sparse or you'll look like you don't have much to sell.

That's all for now. I have some re-stitching to do. Have a great Monday!

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