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Opinons please on craft fair idea

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  • Opinons please on craft fair idea

    Right, potentially long post here, so please bear with me.

    Like many others, I've been quite frustrated this year by;

    A. a lack of good quality craft fairs in my area that aren't full of bought in goods

    B. a lack of fairs generally that aren't full up for jewellery

    c. the huuuuge prices that some of the big fairs charge (I was recently quoted £300 for a weekend fair)

    So, I have decided to look into the possiblity of organising a fair myself in 2009. Not one to start off small, I have found what I believe to be a great venue (in the Midlands), which can accommodate a very large number of stalls (approx 200). The venue management are very positive about the idea of a craft fair being held there, and it is a well known venue nationally for holding other types of 'hobby' events.

    So, I suppose the main question is - what would you guys feel is a fair price to pay for a space at a large fair with 200 stalls, it would be handmade goods only, with perhaps a small amount of fairtrade goods (less than 10% of total stalls) if needed to fill the space. Looking at hire costs, plus marketing, I would estimate I would need to charge £30 to £35 per stall - does this sound a fair price?

    Also, I appreciate 200 stalls is a heck of a lot of crafters, how far as a crafter would you travel to exhibit at an event like this, as I don't want to risk holding the venue if it is unlikely we can fill it. I don't have a specific weekend in mind yet, but was thinking mid-November next year, to catch the Christmas shopping market.

    I know this seems like a bit of an extreme for my first fair, but I am less daunted by organising something on this scale (I work in Project Management) than I am doing a home jewellery party!!

    All ideas and opinions will be welcomed, even if it's just to tell me you think I'm crazy!!

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  • #2
    Hi Claire, wow good for you for thinking big! I think if you can keep the price to that kind of level and get some good marketing/advertising going on then that is not an unreasonable sum to ask. It is frustrating to be constantly told that there is enough jewellery stalls already when you enquire about a fair. Personally I would look to do fairs that were an hour or less away from home, because of fuel costs and time. My jewellery is very different to yours so you can put me down as interested!


    • #3
      Hi Janet,

      Thanks for the feedback - I expect you'll know the venue, if I said 'on the Fosse Way Roundabout' would that make sense to you??

      I'm really hoping I can go ahead with this, the venue were really keen - obviously they'll be making money from us but they were very very positive and offered to help as much as they can, and they will negoatiate on the hire cost if it is to go ahead.

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      • #4
        Hi Claire,

        Well done on thinking big!! I'm very very interested with our cards and candles, and small selection of crochet items and would find £30-£35 an acceptable price to pay for an event like this.

        Obviously with early planning it allows for lots of advertising, promotion, etc so I think people would be willing to pay this.

        Can you put me down as a 'definitely wanting to exhibit' please?

        Regards, Laura


        • #5
          I could be interested. I know I live in Kent now but come from Cov. My mum lives in Hinckley so I could combine it with a trip to visit her. Plese forgive my ignorance but the Fosse Way is pretty long............which end are we talking about?


          • #6
            I'd be interested, I make handbags from recycled paper and situated in Birmingham x


            • #7
              I'd most definatly be interested , I sell jewellery...I'm often told my jewellery is very different to the norm...( i promise it's not weird,lol)

              Any help I can offer nearer to the time ,I'd be glad too, even if its only putting up posters,lol
              Cinderella is proof that a new pair of shoes CAN change your life !!

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              • #8
                Count me in too xx
                Ren x
                12High Street, Middleton Cheney, Oxon, OX17 2PB





                • #9
                  I think you're crazy but only cos I'd be far too scared of taking on something like this, but good for you.

                  That's probably top end of what I'd be willing to pay, but for a big venue that was a proper craft event then yes I'd be interested. Although I am jewellery (as well) but also cards, but I guess a bigger event can take a few of the same.

                  Keep us posted and let us know if you decide to go ahead - how exciting
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                  • #10
                    I'm about an hour away and would definitely be interested I will keep watch for more info
                    I craft, therefore I am!
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                    • #11
                      You are very brave. I make cards, and a few card makers have shown a interest. I would love to take part if you are having a few makers of the same craft.


                      • #12
                        Hi, I'd be interested too, but it would depend on the venue. I paid £35 for one at Oxford Town Hall earlier this month and it had approx 70 stalls. We got over 1000 people through the doors, so I'd expect to pay the same for a good location and similar (good) marketing. I would want to make sure I was the only resin jewellery seller though, as even though it's rare for there to be two of usin one place, it does sometimes happen! I do think- like you- that other jewellery styles can work at the same fair. I would say that 1/3 of the stalls at the fair I mentioned before sold jewellery, but it worked well.
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                        • #13
                          Hi Claire,
                          I live very close to the Fosse! If you want me to help you promote your fair on my site, blog etc. give me a shout.


                          • #14
                            I think your mad, but in a good way! Wishing you all the best in organising this.

                            Just wanted to say £30-£35 is about normal for a craft fair here, and on a much smaller scale than you're planning.

                            Handmade Jewellery


                            • #15
                              Hi Claire, You go girl!!!! Sounds like a great idea to me and you know I would be very interested although we'd have to be away from each other as I'm a jewellery girly too! Good luck and keep in touch, Selina