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  • Maximum Stall Fee?

    This might sound like a bit of a silly question but what is the maximum you would be willing to pay for a stall at a fair.

    The fair in question is on a Saturday in August in a city centre location. Each stall is going to be an 8ft tent and is being advertised as a "Summer Festival".

    I've already decided the cost is more than I'm willing to pay but would really appreciate your thoughts on what is the maximum acceptable cost.

    Thanks
    Too many beads not enough time!!

    www.tamarjewelleryandbeads.co.uk

  • #2
    There are a lot of factors to take into consideration such as organisation, location, footfall, and reputation i.e. is it a regular fair and do the stall holders normally do well.
    Carol
    God helps them that help themselves.

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    • #3
      It is being held in the Piazza in the centre of the main shopping area. I don't think the organiser has a lot of experience of an event of this size, this is not a criticism they adverts other events really well. This is the first one of this kind but the Piazza is used for lots of different markets.
      Too many beads not enough time!!

      www.tamarjewelleryandbeads.co.uk

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      • #4
        Like Carol says there are a lot of factors to take into consideration. Sometimes these things are not only about sales on the day but also about networking, getting your name out there and getting known. It's an opportunity to give out business cards, your facebook details and web site or blog if you have one.
        I don't know the area so couldn't comment on what I'd pay for a stall there.
        Sorry, I'm not much help am I?
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        • #5
          Some of the big country fairs charge hundreds. Little local ones can cost as little as £8. It all depends on the fair, the location, the footfall etc.
          Daesul

          http://www.clairemanwani.com
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          • #6
            I agree, you could pay £10 for a stall in a Church hall or a few hundreds pounds for a popular show in an exhibition hall.

            If at all possible, it's sometimes best to attend as a visitor the first year and book for the following year if it's worth it.

            Saying that, what you describe sounds reasonably good, city centre location i.e. ''footfall ready'' (people don't have to travel to a specific location, they will be there already), and the ''summer festival'' theme, etc. The only question is ''will they spend money''.

            There was a continental market in town last year and it was empty despite the city centre location. The local papers described it a roaring success but it's not what a couple of stallholders were telling me, and what I saw! That's why I'm saying about either attending as a visitor this year, or maybe finding someone who went last year.
            Bead Shop, 91 Liverpool Road, Penwortham, Preston, PR1 0QB, Lancashire. Mon-Fri 10am-5pm, Sat 10am-4pm, Sunday 11am-3pm.

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            • #7
              It is really difficult to know whether a price is good or not however the location of this one doesn't appear to be the issue (although it depends how the 'tents' are located as to whether customers will actually come in to make purchases).

              In theory, the more the pitch costs, the more people you should expect to see there and the more advertising should be done to make sure it is busy. It doesn't always work like that and in the early days you have to take a few risks and try different things to see if they are going to work for you. Eventually you will find the 'market' for your items and be able to tailor where you spend your money.

              A good way of looking at it is - can you afford not to make the money back you would pay for the pitch? If the answer is no then it is probably too much for you at the moment. It doesn't mean that it should be crossed off the list forever but perhaps visited to get a feel for it and looked at again in the future. It is very unlucky not to take anything at a fair (although it does happen) so you should get at least some back but you have to look at what you can afford to lose. Sorry this sounds like a negative way of looking at things but if you are starting out in fairs it is very easy to get carried away and end up losing a fortune when it would have been better to pace yourself and start on the smaller, cheaper fairs first (it is much more comfortable to make the mistakes and iron out your presentation and display issues when you know you haven't paid a lot for the pitch - we all had them to start with and you never really stop learning!)

              Good luck. BTW How much are they wanting for a stall? I can compare it to my town centre market prices...
              Ali x

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              • #8
                I did a xmas market last year at a well known stately home. The organisers had done the fair several times before and the stall holders I spoke to said they had made good profits there. So I paid £350 for a stall from friday to sunday and although there were HUGE numbers of people there not very many of them were buying so I made a loss overall. I heard recently that a stall holder at the Burghley Horse Trials paid £6K for a small pitch but made huge profits on that and had to restock several times she was selling pottery.

                I have no idea what the answer is but if you ever find out please let me know
                Karen
                www.angelicfolk.co.uk
                Bespoke clothing for your little angels
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                • #9
                  I haven't done an enormous amount of craft shows but I think, as a rule, I would be inclined to pay for a 'known' event (a regular, well known event) then somewhere central but is a one-off.

                  It's a gamble but if you're relaxed about what you expect from the day, maybe you just want the experience and exposure then why not?

                  Sometimes it feels like the only person making money with these type of events are the organisers!

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                  • #10
                    I know the event you're referring to, and I have to be honest and say it's more than I'd be prepared to pay for a day's trading too.

                    I tend to think about how much I'd have to sell in order to cover the costs for a particular event, and then think about how feasible that is given the specifics of the event - where, when, how much advertising etc. But we all know that sometimes people just don't seem to part with their money, so high-cost events are, for me, just too much of a risk at the moment.

                    I'd consider £50 as my upper limit for an event at the moment. Have a lot of work to do to get my stall display up-to-scratch, which I think would make me more confident to book costlier, or weekend-long, events.

                    Sarah Gail Designs
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                    • #11
                      Thanks for all your replies. The event doesn't appear to be limited to handmade only and having been to other events she doesn't ensure a fair spread of crafts but when I'm only paying £15-£20 it's not such a problem.

                      Alicat that makes really good sense, I'm going to go along for a look anyway. The stalls are £150 which is an awful lot of stock and I would have to get a lot of future business to make it worthwhile. I've done village fairs where the stall has cost £5 and a raffle prize and done really well so the thought of paying £150 seems too much at the moment.

                      Muffin789 I thought you might see this, as a crafter yourself I think the event you are involved in organising will be a lot better as you have a better idea of what you don't want there (ie fake handmade jewellery!!!!) I don't know that much about the experience of the organiser for an event this big. A market in the local church hall is one thing. I'm glad I'm not the only one who thinks it is too much.
                      Too many beads not enough time!!

                      www.tamarjewelleryandbeads.co.uk

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                      • #12
                        That is one hell of a lot of money for what effectively is a half day show (if I read their advert right). I would never pay that for a one day show - two days this is a common price for me but bearing in mind that I am in one of the most expensive parts of the country, I would expect other areas to be less.

                        Personally, I think this is too much to pay for not many hours - you may make the pitch fee back but if you only break even (when adding in petrol, food, etc) you are no better off than keeping hold of the money and staying at home for the day!

                        One to go to look at first I would think - see exactly what you get for your money, where the stalls are positioned and perhaps sit somewhere for a while and check out how many people are passing through and actually how many seem to be taking the time to visit the stalls and buy something.
                        Ali x

                        Etsy Shop: aliscraftstudio.etsy.com
                        Facebook: AlisCraftStudio
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                        • #13
                          That's definitely too much in my opinion. Like yourself I've done small village hall craft fairs and have done well there. The most I've paid is £35 and it seemed well advertised, but noone did well. My limit is now £20, for the time being anyway.
                          Sensible Animation


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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Westcountry Lass View Post
                            Thanks for all your replies. The event doesn't appear to be limited to handmade only and having been to other events she doesn't ensure a fair spread of crafts but when I'm only paying £15-£20 it's not such a problem.

                            Alicat that makes really good sense, I'm going to go along for a look anyway. The stalls are £150 which is an awful lot of stock and I would have to get a lot of future business to make it worthwhile. I've done village fairs where the stall has cost £5 and a raffle prize and done really well so the thought of paying £150 seems too much at the moment.

                            Muffin789 I thought you might see this, as a crafter yourself I think the event you are involved in organising will be a lot better as you have a better idea of what you don't want there (ie fake handmade jewellery!!!!) I don't know that much about the experience of the organiser for an event this big. A market in the local church hall is one thing. I'm glad I'm not the only one who thinks it is too much.
                            I can honestly say I don't understand how come it's so expensive an event. The little stalls that are being used are being provided by the City Council, who until recently made use of them every couple of weeks for the Farmers' Market which cost £20 per stall on some of the streets in town. That's now been shelved as the council sidelined it so much the traders lost all their trade.

                            All I can guess is that the fee for the use of the Piazza, and event insurance, is astronomical. Nothing like being able to rely on your local council to support small businesses!!!! But don't get me started on that it's one of my soapboxes!!

                            Considering the Piazza is just a big open space in the middle of town, you'd think the powers that be would want to encourage it being used!!

                            <insert head scratching smiley here!>

                            And thanks for your support for our little event. I have been very careful to consider things like facilites, cost and so on from the point of view of a crafter/trader, and have done my best to charge what I myself would see as a reasonable cost.

                            If we can get these things off the ground, and need to look for larger scale venues and so on, then prices may change - but I'd never charge so much that the thought of paying it, if I was trading, would make me wince! And with the buying public not spending so much, I'd hate to see a trader lose that much money - I know how hard it is to find event fees in the first place!!

                            I do wish the organiser in question lots of luck, though, and hope she manages to sell all her pitches. We're finding it difficult to get the number of crafters we want to make our first event a real success, and our stalls are only £20!!!

                            We will get there though! Off on another promotional push tomorrow!!
                            Last edited by muffin789; 27-05-2011, 09:58 PM.

                            Sarah Gail Designs
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