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Difficulties in getting a place at a craft fair - any advice??!

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  • Difficulties in getting a place at a craft fair - any advice??!

    Hello

    I currently make and sell my jewellery at markets and artisan fairs in France but am returning to the UK. Through the "Stallholder" website (details kindly provided by a Craftsforum member - thx) I contacted 20 fair/fete organisers in the South over the last 24 hours. They have all turned me down and advised at least one of the following:
    • no space for (even) more jewellers
    • all jewellery spaces booked for the next 12 months by regulars and no new crafts people being taken on
    • don't bother pursuing this avenue!
    Any thoughts or advice?? How early are dates for fairs posted and just how do you get a place?

    I realise I am too late for this year but "don't bother" seems a bit harsh!

    Nanci Forbes
    Designs
    Bijoux Contemporains
    Nanci Forbes
    Designs
    Bijoux Contemporains

  • #2
    What area of the south will you be returning to? I know it can be very difficult for jewellery makers as there are so many about, I make jewellery myself so I fully understand the difficulties, but I have managed to get booked in to a couple of craft markets at very short notice so there are some spaces about.

    The only thing I can suggest is to keep trying, maybe you could look a little bit further outside of your area...if it's worth it financially of course...or look into other ways of selling your pieces. Maybe you could do some jewellery parties or if you have enough stock is there a non-craft market locally that you could try? I know these can be a bit pricey but they maybe you could ask for some kind of trial deal - just thinking out loud now really so these may be rubbish ideas but you never know unless you ask!!

    Hope you get some positive responses one way or another soon
    Karly
    http://www.thesilvershack.co.uk
    http://twitter.com/thesilvershack1
    http://thesilvershack1.blogspot.com/
    https://www.facebook.com/TheSilverShack

    Comment


    • #3
      Thanks Karly. I will be living near Salisbury and will keep looking in the area and beyond. You are right, you have to weigh it up all up with cost of petrol etc. I travel a reasonable distance out here for markets but have managed to get some regular slots, it all takes time. The cost of stalls at markets and fairs here is generally less than in the UK. I might try Etsy or Ebay although I have not done so, not sure how that might be.

      Thanks!
      Nanci Forbes
      Designs
      Bijoux Contemporains

      Comment


      • #4
        Also jewellery parties - that's a good idea.......I'll need to make a few friends quite quickly when I get back tho'!
        Nanci Forbes
        Designs
        Bijoux Contemporains

        Comment


        • #5
          Are you on facebook? It's another good way of getting your work known, I know a lot of people on here have facebook pages, twitter accounts and blogs...you've then got your auction sites as well and I know it's a lot of work on the computer but as everything seems to be going virtual these days it's definitely the way to go (just read that back and realised how old I sound!!) if you can link as many of them together as possible then it will cut down on the time you spend uploading pictures and typing the same information

          I know you can't posts links yet but you can put some pictures in an album on your profile, would be lovely to see some of your work
          Karly
          http://www.thesilvershack.co.uk
          http://twitter.com/thesilvershack1
          http://thesilvershack1.blogspot.com/
          https://www.facebook.com/TheSilverShack

          Comment


          • #6
            Yes, I have some work to do I think! Just looked at your web site - beautiful - love the ear rings! Your bijoux is such a good price!
            Nanci Forbes
            Designs
            Bijoux Contemporains

            Comment


            • #7
              I have to admit not everything on my website is handmade, in fact the handmade section is looking very small at the minute as it's in desperate need of updating! I got offered a bulk lot at a very good price when I started making jewellery as a business rather than just doing it as a ,and it was quite good to fill up some space at some of my first fairs (I've never claimed I made them and always asked if it was ok to take them beforehand!) to be honest they tend to just sit on the shelf and take up room now but I don't really know what else to do with them!
              Karly
              http://www.thesilvershack.co.uk
              http://twitter.com/thesilvershack1
              http://thesilvershack1.blogspot.com/
              https://www.facebook.com/TheSilverShack

              Comment


              • #8
                Hi Nanci Sorry to go off tack a bit with this one, but this summer we are going the other way, to France, and I will be selling my goodies at artisan fairs. Do you know of a good source which lists the artisan fairs in france, as I am having trouble finding a good site for listings. I am particularly interested in Brittany.

                For your question, I think you have to book well in advance for any jewellery stalls at craft fairs here. All the organisers I speak to, say they could fill a hall with jewellery makers every week.
                The jewellery makers I know, all seem to have managed to get in with one or 2 organisers, and stick with them, to ensure they get the the bookings

                Stallfinder I think is one of the best for finding events, although you could also look at the whats on section of net mums.

                Good luck
                regards
                John
                www.jbwoodcraft.co.uk

                Comment


                • #9
                  I make jewellery too so know how hard it is to find fairs. The only thing I would say is to get involved with all the forums on craft sites as you sometimes hear that way about craft fairs. Also as well as etsy and ebay you could try folksy which is for UK based sellers only. Also as someone else said try stallfinder. Above all best of luck

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    As organisers, we always try to ensure a diverse selection of jewellery exhibitors, who are representative of different styles and techniques, so for example, if you are a silversmith, or make your own lampwork beads, or have a particularly quirky style, etc. then you are in a good position to find an exhibitor space. You don't say what type of jewellery you make, but perhaps tastefully "thinking out of the box" might be an idea!
                    www.tempopromotes.co.uk
                    www.folksy.com/shops/TempoDesigns
                    www.elena-alice.co.uk
                    http://www.facebook.com/pages/Time-f...86878804715983

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      hi, not sure if someone has said this already as ive got my 20 week old daughter on my lap but its well worth asking organisers to put you on a waiting list for any of the events this year. I organise fairs with a friend and we have over 70 jewellers on our mailing list, however there is always a cancellation through childcare problems, ill health etc so we are always using our waiting list for each fair. Hope the move back to the UK goes well for you. Victoria x

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        This summer we are going the other way, to France, and I will be selling my goodies at artisan fairs. Do you know of a good source which lists the artisan fairs in france, as I am having trouble finding a good site for listings. I am particularly interested in Brittany. John JB Woodcraft

                        I know from past experience that St Marlo in Brittany have a lot of street sales of jewelry, atifacts, and artists work. This would be one place I would certainly try.

                        Roger
                        Last edited by Removed content; 28-06-2011, 10:38 AM.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Another option may be farmers' markets which are very polular in this area, and they often have handmade crafts alongside the fruit 'n' veg. Check out the website for your local District Council as you should be able to find information on there.
                          Last edited by iBeads; 28-06-2011, 11:40 AM. Reason: typos
                          Annie

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Hi John

                            Here in France you tend to find artisan fairs (mainly run by French communes) by word of mouth, posters on roads, tourist offices, local mairies and local networks often operated by English folk living here. Same source for Christmas fairs. I did find a website that lists vide-greniers through to Noel marches and will see if I can find the link and email it to you. I never found it in time to book any!

                            French people like "nocturne marches" which are often, but not always, just for "artisans" and these are best found by driving around and seeing posters. Once you get to talk to people at them they let you know of others.

                            I live in the Dordogne area (quite arty and LOTs of jewellery stalls around) and have 4 permanent pitches at markets in the area. I sell there mainly to the tourist trade but no-one has much money to spend so often visitors are looking for little bits and pieces. To do this you need to register with your local Chamber of Commerce and get a trading pass. You will need to register and get a siret number for this. You should also have insurance, so all similar to home.

                            I do have to say that there is little "monitoring" of markets out here so you do get quite a mix at many of the events.

                            Bonne Chance!
                            Nanci Forbes
                            Designs
                            Bijoux Contemporains

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Thanks eveyone for your advice.

                              My jewellery won't qualify for quirky or unusual I'm afraid so will need to do some more thinking! I'm going to put some photos on this site if the broad band in rural France will allow!
                              Nanci Forbes
                              Designs
                              Bijoux Contemporains

                              Comment

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