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No more craft fairs for me!!!

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  • No more craft fairs for me!!!

    I have just come back from doing a summer fair in Wivenhoe just outside Colchester, and have to say it was lovely, did it last year too and it is a nice fair to do. Did pretty well too, took just under £80 and stall was £15 so was pleased with that, was only for a few hours too. Has been a gorgeous day and people were out in hoardes....but.....

    ....have decided I have really had enough of craft fairs!! Even though it did well, I just don't enjoy them anymore at all. I hate the setting up of them, the dismantling, watching people spend money on tat and then try to haggle with you on a beautiful handcrafted item and walk away as £12 is just far too much for a lovely unique handcrafted peg rail but then watch them spend £'s and £'s on a tombola opposite to win a can of pineapple!!!!!!! They leave me so disheartened, mainly by the fact that people just do not appreciate hand crafted things anymore! So am going to concentrate on my websales from now on as whilst I was at the fair had a couple more good orders come through which I would have got anyway without stepping out of my front door at stupid o clock this morning!!

    I am not knocking anybody for doing them, some people really enjoy them, for the social side as much as anything, but am afraid they just aren't for me anymore!

    ...also, as a result will now be putting a lot of items onto my website at a sale price to clear stock (But before anybody gets too excited it won;t be the boxes or the clocks or the peg rails!!! )
    Jo x

    For handcrafted wooden gifts and decorations please visit http://www.sommerwood.co.uk


  • #2
    Hi, just read your thread, and I can't say I blame you. It is disheartening that people believe that something hand crafted should be cheaper than something mass produced. It sounds like you did well though, and good luck with your new strategy. It is more appealing making sales without having to step out of the front door.

    Enjoy whats left of this sunny day.
    Amanda
    xx

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    • #3
      Originally posted by Sommerwood View Post
      I have just come back from doing a summer fair in Wivenhoe just outside Colchester, and have to say it was lovely, did it last year too and it is a nice fair to do. Did pretty well too, took just under £80 and stall was £15 so was pleased with that, was only for a few hours too. Has been a gorgeous day and people were out in hoardes....but.....

      ....have decided I have really had enough of craft fairs!! Even though it did well, I just don't enjoy them anymore at all. I hate the setting up of them, the dismantling, watching people spend money on tat and then try to haggle with you on a beautiful handcrafted item and walk away as £12 is just far too much for a lovely unique handcrafted peg rail but then watch them spend £'s and £'s on a tombola opposite to win a can of pineapple!!!!!!! They leave me so disheartened, mainly by the fact that people just do not appreciate hand crafted things anymore! So am going to concentrate on my websales from now on as whilst I was at the fair had a couple more good orders come through which I would have got anyway without stepping out of my front door at stupid o clock this morning!!

      I am not knocking anybody for doing them, some people really enjoy them, for the social side as much as anything, but am afraid they just aren't for me anymore!

      ...also, as a result will now be putting a lot of items onto my website at a sale price to clear stock (But before anybody gets too excited it won;t be the boxes or the clocks or the peg rails!!! )
      Know just how you feel. The two we have organised ourselves were really successful for us. Partly I think because we only allowed hand Crafted items. The last one we did was due to someone taking our card and then contacting us to see if we would like to do one at the local school/nursery. Which given our target audience should have been great but with no advertising and others just selling total "tat" (had better use that word lol) was a total disaster. Then I'm such a soft touch a little girl came up wanting to buy mummy something special for Mothers day and Guess what old softy here let her take her pick for a quid lol. I really should not be aloud out.....

      Your crafts are wonderful, and im sure if you can get enough traffic to your site you will do great. People just do not appreciate the time and work that goes into these things. grrrrrrrr
      Wishing you loads of success
      http://butterbeandesigns.co.uk/

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      • #4
        A friend of mine was saying the same thing this week about giving it all up she no longer enjoys doing craft fayres and markets. All your stuff is lovely



        I Love My Computer Because My Friends Live In It

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        • #5
          I find that my mosaics just don't sell at craft fairs. This is nothing to do with the fairs themselves as others have done really well at fairs I have attended, but for some reason people don't seem to by my crafts .

          I get a lot of positive feedback 'oh aren't they gorgeous', 'you are so talented' but that's usually followed by ' oh what a shame I bought a mirror last week' or 'we haven't decorated yet so don't know what colout to have'. or there are those that walk passed my stall without a glance (sob!!!).

          So I have decided to stick to doing fairs near xmas, as I hope that people might think ' oh what a great gift that would make for...'. I must say, I've had the most success through Ebay (so far, tnd to jinx myself when I say things like that!!). I know people have their thoughts on Ebay but it has worked well for me so far.

          Sommerwood - well done on the fair today, it sounds like you did really well. Your craft are lovely so it doesn't surprise me. nd good luck selling through your site!
          Katian Mosaics

          ♥ My Ebay Listings ♥

          My Facebook Page

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          • #6
            Having just got back from a fair at Trentham and sold just £3.80 worth of items I feel like quitting craft fairs at the moment!!

            I totally agree about hand crafted items. I too have lovely hand made peg racks, and signs, and jigsaws and coat hooks. People today just seemed to walk past. Maybe I should grab thier arm and shake it saying 'I made this... it's hand crafted don't you know...' Or maybe not!

            It's a frustrating time!

            Good luck with your web sales. I'm trying to work on that area too. Let's hope we both have lots of success.

            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
              Because I didn't do the folk festival last weekend (illness) and lost my table money I thought I'd have a go at selling at a local boot-sale tomorrow.

              Can only try - I'm not going to drop my prices - but I shall have my cards there to give out so may generate interest that way.....
              Blog Website Flickr

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              • #8
                Well I've not done my first craft fair yet but I'll not get my hopes up yet!!! Such a shame as your stuff is gorgeous Jo - hopefully though you will get sales through the website
                Visit my Etsy store http://swirlyarts.etsy.com
                My daily thoughts! http://swirlyarts.blogspot.com
                My blog of cute stuff http://cuteable.com


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                • #9
                  I went through this a few years ago - we were selling somebody else's stuff then, the most original pottery you ever saw, but all we did was punter spotting all day............you know, trying to guess whether they would even stop etc. We've done craft fairs, market stalls, party plans, I used to sell photocopiers and typewriters - so I should be able to take it, but I'm afraid the general public leave a lot to be desired! Me? Bitter? Damn right!

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                  • #10
                    Hmmm.....

                    ....... As an organiser, I'd love to be able to add something positive to this, but I can't.

                    I don't know what this compulsion the public have to buy rubbishy imports when there is such a wealth of handcrafted items at reasonable prices out there.

                    Do craft fairs have that old fashioned ring to them? Do they conjure up dreadful images of toilet roll holders and oven mitts which put people off buying or even walking through the door?

                    I just wish I knew where the perfect venue was........I agree that I think the Christmas run up is a better time for selling. Mr & Mrs Public are more geared up for buying then.

                    Are crafters the only ones who really appreciate what goes in to other crafts?

                    Jules
                    Apple Tree Crafts
                    www.appletreecraftfairs.com

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                    • #11
                      Sorry to hear you didn't enjoy the fair. I'm just curious as to where you heard about it? I'm in Clacton and I can never find craft events that are fairly local (althought I have been to a couple at the Town Hall which were very much "tombola and toilet roll holder" affairs ) Aaaanyway yes...

                      First post, eeek.
                      http://smurfpop.wordpress.com/
                      http://smurfpop.etsy.com

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                      • #12
                        I have just read this thread and I have to say I don't blame you. I have done 4 fairs so far this year and covered my table on 1 but only just - forget the other expenses like buying the materials to start with!!

                        My hubby has said we should see what the situation is at the end of this year to see if it is worth us continuing with the fairs.

                        One of the main problems for us is that you spend ages making up the stuff to sell at these fairs to ensure you have enough stock - just in case - whereas you can make to order on the web so you don't end up with loads of items made and nowhere to keep it and then have to sell it later on at a knock down price so get rid of it.

                        It is really disheartening but it does seem that it is affecting everyone and it has nothing to do with location or what your craft is.

                        I am trying more Country Fairs and School Fairs this year to see if it is any better as people are there for another reason and will perhaps "splash out" and buy something handcrafted.

                        Here's hoping that the long hot summer that is forecast this year will knock some sense into the public that handcrafted goods are best.
                        Willowmax
                        Handcrafted Cards for Special Occassions
                        www.willowmaxdesign.com

                        email - [email protected]

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by willowmax View Post
                          Here's hoping that the long hot summer that is forecast this year will knock some sense into the public that handcrafted goods are best.
                          Or if that fails, keep topping up their glasses and hope that does the trick...I always buy more when I've had one..or two.....!!!!
                          Katian Mosaics

                          ♥ My Ebay Listings ♥

                          My Facebook Page

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                          • #14
                            This thread isnt good news for me, someone who is considering starting on the craft fair circuit.

                            I do understand what you mean about people buying imported *tat* though and this must be very frustrating to all of you very talented people.

                            I may re-think this option now myself
                            Maz

                            Preserving yesterdays memories for Tomorrow at www.willow-crafts.com

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                            • #15
                              I still plan to do fairs, but feel I am better sticking to fairs at Christmas, as my items don't tend to sell very well elsewhere. One of the big things seems to be that people don't come to craft fairs to spend money. It's the three Ps more often than not .

                              I do enjoy craft fairs - I have met some great people and had a really good day, even though I haven't sold a thing, so am not going to stop doing them. I also love attending fairs - and I'm not a 3 P - if I like it (and I appreciate how much work goes into crafts) I buy it!!!

                              I think it would be a shame if craft fairs disappaired altogether...I agree that the big threat is the imported rubbish...even people with money seem tight (sometimes they are the worst actually!) and are happier to pay a quid for a bit of tact rather than a bit more for handmade British quality.

                              Don't be put off WillowC - I think their is still a market for craft fairs, you just need to accept that you are not always going to profit from each. Often it can be more of a social thing (in my experience), which is just as valuable in my opinion.
                              Katian Mosaics

                              ♥ My Ebay Listings ♥

                              My Facebook Page

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