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No luck with craft fairs so i tried something different...

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  • No luck with craft fairs so i tried something different...

    Hi all,
    The last 3 craft fairs i have been a stall holder at i have not done very well- there seems to be a problem with getting people through the doors at the moment!! So my friend and i (who share said stall) have been trying very hard to think of different ways to sell our crafts. Her sister in law makes bead jewellery and recently tried selling it doing a jewellery party- she did brilliant (made over £300!)! So she took some of my friends and my jewellery (she does fabric brooches and i do crochet brooches and hairclips) to her next jewellery party and sold loads of our stuff!!
    I was stunned when she rang me and said id made £50 there plus i had an order from a lady who wanted £35.00 worth of my stuff!! Perhaps not a fortune, but thats a lot for me considering at craft fairs i have only made back my stall cost plus a few pounds extra and that is standing there all day. This is only an evening and does not cost me a penny! My friend made £30+ plus had 3 large orders- Result!!
    So my friend has decided to have a party at her house inviting lots of our friends (and telling them to bring their friends ) where we will be selling all of our crafts as obviously jewellery is just a very small part of what we do.
    Maybe those of you who are having the same problem could try this route? i will be posting after the party to let you know if it was another success (yes please!!) or not so good.
    Keeping my fingers crossed!!!!!!!!
    Lady Lora

  • #2
    I have done party plan before and found it far more lucrative than fairs. Fairs can be useful though to get party bookings. I think people that go to parties will normally always buy something, however small and sometimes spend more because they like what they see. A captive audience and less stalls to share the sales around.

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    • #3
      Well done, a great start to your party plan career!

      I've always found parties to be well worthwhile, too. I also find craft fairs more worthwhile when you can market your website and parties as well as sell on the day.

      Don't forget that for the parties to be successful, you need to book future parties from the ones you're holding. Sounds obvious, but it can be the most difficult part. A free gift as well as incentives (free stuff) for the would-be host tends to do the trick, but you need to plan it out, and maybe change it every so often too. Also maybe an extra freebie for the current host if 2 or 3 people also book parties?

      I'm thinking about what to offer for January and February parties at the moment as they are the deadest months of the year!! Planning so far ahead really does not come naturally to me!!!

      Good luck to you and have fun!!
      digital stamps for cardmakers: http://www.handmadeharbour.co.uk
      blog: http://handmadeharbour.blogspot.com
      hand painted personalised plaques, clocks, canvases, etc: http://www.1stuniquegifts.co.uk
      blog: http://www.1stuniquegifts.co.uk/blog

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      • #4
        Well done to all of you.

        I did a party on Wednesday, it didnt go as well as I had hoped but better than some fairs, and I have another booking, I also find it hard during Jan / Feb as peeps just arnt interested, so I use the time to refresh my stock and plan the years fairs etc. instead.
        Handmade jewellery, to buy gifts or just to treat yourself visit my website, commissions welcome or join me on facebook for a chat

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        • #5
          Hey,

          Well done on a great idea.

          Just a thought - for the dead months, why not try and advertise for future things. Bascially- in January have crafts themed for Valentines, in Feb - Mother's day (as well as some other, usual line stuff). Can also work for Easter/Halloween/Father's Day/Back to School.

          Althoguh I think the advice about taking time to rethink your strategy and also make more things is a stirling idea!

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          • #6
            Hi,

            sadly, I hear too many tales of woe at craft fairs. It's very hard to do well. I gave up doing them last year and concentrate on internet sales now, and am doing very well.

            Your party idea is excellent, I am so glad it is working out for you so far. I am sure it will go from strength to strength.. The key to surviving in crafts and prospering is to look for differnet ways of selling and promoting your crafts.

            The model of selling at parties has been very successful for many years and still is, so I am sure it will work for you.

            Let us know how the next party goes.
            Steve :-)
            Handmade woodcrafts - relaunching soon.
            www.kipperworkshops.com[COLOR=Blue]
            Best range of wooden craft shapes and cutouts.[SIZE=2]

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            • #7
              Hi, Me and a friend were going to do parties a while ago but were told you need special insurance which we couldn't track down. And what happens if something gets damaged, stolen etc or if you go to someones house where, for example, they smoke, and all your stuff stinks! etcetc... I love the idea of it, but when she started telling me things like that it got me thinking, they had never occured to me.
              are these things problems? Or just my friend overreacting??
              *I Love Handmade*
              www.littlemillie.folksy.com
              www.urbancraftdesigners.etsy.com
              http://www.flickr.com/photos/littlemillie/

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              • #8
                he he he I am really cheeky I have been bringing my stuff everywhere with me telling everone at friends and family parties and they have been selling like hot cakes!!

                I have been making stuff for myself to wear and people have stopped me asking where did I get it from and I point them to my website. I must admit website sales are slow

                I havent ventured into parties yet but I was thinking about it when I have more stock.
                Still Finding my niche but getting there!!!

                My website - http://www.tattyslittlegems.co.uk
                http://www.dbyt.co.uk
                Follow My Blog - http://tattyslittlegems.blogspot.com/
                Myspace - www.myspace.com/tattyslittlegems
                Twitter - http://twitter.com/Tattyslittlegem
                Facebook - http://www.facebook.com/home.php?ref...84&ref=profile

                I am also on many websites, I would have joined it as Tattyslittlegem.. PLEASE ADD ME

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by urbancrafters View Post
                  Hi, Me and a friend were going to do parties a while ago but were told you need special insurance which we couldn't track down. And what happens if something gets damaged, stolen etc or if you go to someones house where, for example, they smoke, and all your stuff stinks! etcetc... I love the idea of it, but when she started telling me things like that it got me thinking, they had never occured to me.
                  are these things problems? Or just my friend overreacting??
                  I've never heard of special insurance. I would think public liability would cover you, but the risks must be pretty small in someone's house.

                  I've never done a party where people have smoked (even when I did them years ago) and I think nowadays you could point out (politely) that you are at your place of work in their house!!

                  I've never had anything damaged or stolen by anyone either. I'm sure it could happen, but it could happen anywhere, and if you thought like that you'd never go anywhere!
                  digital stamps for cardmakers: http://www.handmadeharbour.co.uk
                  blog: http://handmadeharbour.blogspot.com
                  hand painted personalised plaques, clocks, canvases, etc: http://www.1stuniquegifts.co.uk
                  blog: http://www.1stuniquegifts.co.uk/blog

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    I have done a few parties and loved them. They were fun and very 'fruitful'. Selling wasnt an issue for me.....I didnt have to sell, they sold themselves but I found it difficult to get another party. A lot of people were going to get back to me and never did.

                    And the insurance you are referring to is Public LIability - This is quite widely available and maybe products liability as you are manufacturing an item you would probably need to cover yourself if anyone had a reaction to the metals used or a piece of wire sticks in them. HTH
                    www.occasions-accessories.co.uk
                    Facebook Group

                    Handmade Occasion Jewellery, Bridal Accessories and Head wear. Semi Precious Gemstones, Swarovski Crystal & Sterling Silver. Bespoke service available.

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                    • #11
                      I agree craft fairs have been a little slow for me, especially when there are loads of other jewellery makers there.
                      Parties I have found are much better, for sales, and after months of badgering (stalking!) friends to have parties for me, I now have a couple of parties lined up for people I don't know (if that makes sense), and I'm really chuffed to bits, I'll let you know how I get on, but any advice from those doing this for a long time would be appreciated. Now I've started the momentum, I want to keep it up!

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                      • #12
                        Hi I have public liability as we all must have for fairs etc but my policy also covers me for party plan. Something to do with actually selling in someones home. covers breakages to my jewellery.

                        I use GM Imber & Sons Ltd cost £50
                        Handmade jewellery, to buy gifts or just to treat yourself visit my website, commissions welcome or join me on facebook for a chat

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by craftyslb View Post
                          I agree craft fairs have been a little slow for me, especially when there are loads of other jewellery makers there.
                          Parties I have found are much better, for sales, and after months of badgering (stalking!) friends to have parties for me, I now have a couple of parties lined up for people I don't know (if that makes sense), and I'm really chuffed to bits, I'll let you know how I get on, but any advice from those doing this for a long time would be appreciated. Now I've started the momentum, I want to keep it up!
                          You really need to concentrate on some good incentives (=freebies) to encourage people to book - it's the only hard part of party selling. They only get their gift once the party takes place and sales are above a certain amount (you choose the amount, but let them know).
                          digital stamps for cardmakers: http://www.handmadeharbour.co.uk
                          blog: http://handmadeharbour.blogspot.com
                          hand painted personalised plaques, clocks, canvases, etc: http://www.1stuniquegifts.co.uk
                          blog: http://www.1stuniquegifts.co.uk/blog

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Thanks, I found this a really useful thread.
                            WightRose

                            http://www.folksy.com/shops/Wightrose

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                            • #15
                              Im going to do my first party in a few weeks for a friend. Im just hopeing it goes ok and may be get a few more parties from it.

                              Does anyone give discount or a gift to the host? Im not to sure how to go about it.
                              x Maria

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