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  • A selling idea

    Having read another post on the forum about poor sales at craft fairs I thought I'd tell you about an idea I've been using fot the past four years.
    Each November I host an Open House. It's my biggest even each year and also my biggest earner.
    I clear out my down stairs (kitchen lounge and dining room), borrow paste tables from friends, cups from the church and set up tables all over the rooms. I display my bags, jewellery and beads and also invite another local crafter (different each year) to have a table. I put on christmas refreshments and fresh coffee with a donations jar for a local charity.
    For several weeks before I put adverts into the PO's and shops and then hand a little flier out to everyone I know. I also give them out to complete strangers (over the years I've got more bold!)
    I open my house from 9.10am to catch the mums on the way back from school run and then it's a non stop flow until 3pm. I then have a couple of hours to myself and then it's open again from 6pm til 9pm, so those who've been at work can come and shop inthe evening.
    It's always gone down well and I als do a free draw for a voucher to spend on my products.
    full time mum and very very part time crafter.

  • #2
    That sounds like a good idea! What do you do about parking? I have trouble as it is to park outside my own house.
    MISI - http://www.misi.me.uk/store_info.php?user_id=741

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    • #3
      I have mentioned this several times on previous posts, I too do Open House and have a friend who is an aromatherapist along, she does massages also makes and sells her own lovely creams, soaps and shampoos etc. I have made £100's not pounds at these. Have 2 booked this year one at my sister's and one at home. A bit of work but much easier than a fair.

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      • #4
        Louise, not every one turns up at once, I put on the invites that it is a private road and park with consideration, never had a problem. I also have very good neighbours that when my drive is full they can park in theirs. DH acts as parking attendant.

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        • #5
          Thank you. I will definately think about this!
          MISI - http://www.misi.me.uk/store_info.php?user_id=741

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          • #6
            no parking isssue's round here either so can't really advise on that.
            I have so much fun doing it. There are quiet times and much busier times too.
            full time mum and very very part time crafter.

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            • #7
              A selling idea

              I think the open house idea is fantastic.

              By opening your house to friends, family, even strangers, they will feel welcome, especially if they smell fresh coffee. When people hold craft fairs in halls etc, they often lack this homely atmosphere.

              Plus when people come to you, they are coming to spend and will often feel a little more obliged to part with their money.

              If you have a friend that could offer hand massages, head massages etc, this also adds to the atmosphere and people can have a pamper session as well.

              You save money also by not having to pay table fees, petrol etc. I think this could be the way to go.
              Take care

              Kathryn
              Website - http://www.lazydaisyglass.co.uk
              Blog - http://www.lazydaisyglass.blogspot.com
              Folksy http://www.folksy.com/shops/lazydaisyglass
              Etsy - http://www.etsy.com/shop.php?user_id=6370100
              Facebook - http://www.facebook.com/album.php?ai...ss/55255965842

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              • #8
                I agree Kathryn, it is far more relaxed and my customers now wait for me to have the open house so that they can stock up on gifts etc. In the summer I do a garden party (British weather permitting) pimms and strawberries, very civilised. Better than having to load the car, unpack, repack, load the car again, get home frazzled unpack and then add up the takings and think what did I do that for? Think of what I could have been doing instead.

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                • #9
                  Just a word of warning. Make sure your house insurance is OK with you holding such events. Some prohibit any sort of visits from "outsiders" linked to any business venture. Not wishing to be a killjoy, but worth thinking about.
                  Cynthia
                  http://iforjonesdesigns.website.orange.co.uk

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                  • #10
                    yeah, the other one, that is frequently talked about on here is parties. I have generally tended to make more at parties than at fairs. People are invited weeks in advance and know what products are going to be there.

                    They are also loads of fun, you can have a couple of glasses of wine and relax.
                    www.beadlab.com

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                    • #11
                      These ideas sound really cool but are you not a bit nervous about asking strangers into your home and likewise do they not worry about it? I guess not as it seems like a big hit! I guess I would just be a bit worried about going into some random persons house...

                      But maybe I'm just more nervous than others!
                      Caroline

                      Diamond Ideas

                      http://www.diamondideas.co.uk/

                      http://twitter.com/DiamondIdeas01

                      Diamond Ideas is also on facebook!

                      Go on, add some sparkle to your project!

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                      • #12
                        I had a similar idea recently, unfortunately our new flat is on the 4th floor with no lift! I can't imagine many people would bother coming all the way upstairs!

                        Good plan nevertheless

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                        • #13
                          I guess living in a village helps. I make sure that my valuables are not around and haven't found a problem with it.
                          My visitor numbers go up each year with people bringing their friends along.
                          I have a notice on the door saying just come in and if the weather is suitable I leave the door open.
                          Flouro, could you talk a friend into letting you do it?
                          full time mum and very very part time crafter.

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                          • #14
                            Brilliant idea! Thanks for that, will have to work on my mum though and use her house as no-one can ever find mine! lol

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