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Craft fairs and events - how's business?

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  • Craft fairs and events - how's business?

    I have just returned to the crafting scene and am starting to think how I'm going to go about selling my mosaics again.

    I did try doing a number of craft fairs when I started out but failed to sell - I think it was the price of my items and the fact that it's not something you would really buy on the 'sepur of the moment'.

    Howver, my curiousity is getting the beter of me and I'm wondring if it's worth another go? I have heard about a Xmas Craft Market running the week before xmas which isn't far away from me. Do I take the plunge and see what happens?

    How have craft fairs been going for everyone else? Is the fact that Xmas is coming helping or hindering sales?

    Any thoughts etc much appreciated as always!
    Last edited by Katianne; 10-11-2008, 09:17 PM.
    Katian Mosaics

    ♥ My Ebay Listings ♥

    My Facebook Page

  • #2
    OH & I don't do craft fairs but we have a regular market stall 3 days a week selling handmade jewellery, a small selection of beads and findings and we also sell rocks, crystals & gemstones.

    We had an excellent summer whilst most people here on the forum seemed to say that their takings were down. We do sell a lot of pocket money items and the kids are fascinated with the stones so they drag their parents in, spend ages trying to decide what to buy with their few pounds so the mum's get bored and start looking at the jewellery - up there for thinking, down there for dancing!

    We also do a roaring trade with cheap earrings and can easily sell up to 200 pairs a week as most women rarely buy only one pair.

    Then in Sept & Oct sales took quite a dip - not disaterously but enough to notice after the good summer we'd had.

    Last week our takings soared again and the general concensus from the customers was that they were buying for presents.

    Its quite normal for the regular markets to be poor in Sept & Oct and sometimes even early Nov but hopefully we're on the up now.

    I know several forum members have said that their fairs/parties have shown great improvements in their takings over the last few weeks.

    Just have to try and stash some of it away to see us through the worst 2-3 months after christmas.
    Auntynet

    Step-daughter's website selling hand dyed sock yarns www.knotanotherknitter.com




    ~ * ~ * ~ Of all the things I've ever lost, I miss my mind the most! ~ * ~ * ~

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    • #3
      I do the occasional Craft Fair but must admit I do better at coffee mornings and open evenings, or party plan. This way you have a captive audience and people only generally come that want to buy.

      Would elaly like a reasonably priced regular event so that customers get to know you, when you are there and come back and also commission items. The problem is finding one that is cheap enough to write off as advertising without the panic of trying to recoup your expenses, used to do a local monthly market but the rents have gone up to £35.00 not selling anything plus the petrol and 9 hours in total including travel etc was not worth it.

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      • #4
        I have found it a struggle all year to make any big amounts at craft fairs.
        I tend to have alternate good and bad sales. I have found people are a lot more careful with their money and are only buying presents rather than things for themselves at the moment.
        I think I really need to have a big push to make more 'designer' stuff rather than getting stuck on the more basic designs. I am also going to try and remake some of the stuff that hasn't sold and use up all the beads I have hanging around.
        I have 4 more sales before xmas and the stall fees are around £10 so I don't usually make a loss.

        Melanie

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        • #5
          I would like to do this market. I have done a market before and even though I didn't sell much, I did sell a few mirrors and it was really busy in terms of people looking around. I frooze though, as it was March time and we even had snow! This one is indoors though so at least I won't have to worry about being too cold (unless my stall is by a drafty door!).

          It's nice to do events I think as it gives you the opportunity to meet other crafters. As you say too, maybe if I could find a regular event I could take part in, customers may return and eventually place an order.

          I really want to make a go of things this time. Since I started crafting my hope was that I'd get to the point where I could reduce my hours at work and spend more time on crafts. So now I need some outlets!

          I need to get my website going again and revamp it. I've noticed there have been a few new websites since I was last here, such as Folksey? Something similar anyway!

          I also need to start contacting shops but I'm not really sure where to start with that. Do I call in, email, write, phone?

          I think I need to start a new thread on how to re-launch and promote my work!!!
          Katian Mosaics

          ♥ My Ebay Listings ♥

          My Facebook Page

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          • #6
            I'll let you know Saturday night, I have a church Christmas fair, so hopefully will be counting my millions (hey a girl can dream!)

            I then have a craft fair two weeks later, and then a 2 day event two weeks after that. (I'm lucky that they are all falling on the weekends that my other half is off work!).

            Haven't done one since July, and that wasn't all that rocking to be honest. Website it getting plenty of hits, just need to convert them into sales.
            www.jos-beaded-designs.com

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            • #7
              I've not done any craft fairs this year as I've been far too busy with my wedding toppers but I am trying one on the 6th December!

              Just wanted to say nice to see you back katianne!!!

              Pauline
              Personalised Wedding Cake Toppers

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              • #8
                I've never considered a craft fair before, but if I made mirrors as good as yours I would definitely give them a go. Perhaps you could make some smaller items to sell alongside the bigger ones, and remember to offer out cards! The last craft fair I went to I saw some very unusual and very beautiful clocks (that I couldn't afford!) I've kicked myself ever since for not taking a card, grrr, but then he didn't offer me one.
                Gail x

                My Blog: http://gailburtonart.blogspot.com/

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by onlyme View Post
                  I've never considered a craft fair before, but if I made mirrors as good as yours I would definitely give them a go. Perhaps you could make some smaller items to sell alongside the bigger ones, and remember to offer out cards! The last craft fair I went to I saw some very unusual and very beautiful clocks (that I couldn't afford!) I've kicked myself ever since for not taking a card, grrr, but then he didn't offer me one.
                  Thanks! I also make clocks, photo frames and coasters, although actually these don't tend to sell very well either at craft fairs!!! Mirrors sell online, I've sold a couple of photo frames and clocks online too but nothing compared t my mirrors.

                  Cards - you've just remined me! Bet get cracking with those too!

                  Pauline - thanks for the welcome back!
                  Katian Mosaics

                  ♥ My Ebay Listings ♥

                  My Facebook Page

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by auntynet View Post
                    OH & I don't do craft fairs but we have a regular market stall 3 days a week selling handmade jewellery, a small selection of beads and findings and we also sell rocks, crystals & gemstones.
                    Hi auntynet

                    I noticed your reply to the post on hows business and was very interested to hear you sell at markets.

                    We also make jewellery (we're in Hyde so over the hills from you) and would love some advice. At the moment we are selling mainly to family, friends and friends families, etc (I guess that's how most start) but we are keen to move up a gear and at the very least start to make the craft pay for itself. One of my friends suggested selling at the market but I think our pieces may not be suitable/too expensive as we tend to use expensive Sterling silver and expensive beads.

                    If it is not asking too much, can I ask what kinds of jewellery you sell at the market, and for what price range?

                    Bye the way, do you go to Burhouse Beads?

                    Yours

                    Olga


                    Further details of my jewellery can be found here
                    www.kojewellery.co.uk

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                    • #11
                      OMG - I am so sorry Olga. I only just noticed this and its 2 weeks since you asked me. I'm not ignorant - I just haven't seen it.

                      Will PM you tomorrow (its very late and I've been on the vodka )
                      Auntynet

                      Step-daughter's website selling hand dyed sock yarns www.knotanotherknitter.com




                      ~ * ~ * ~ Of all the things I've ever lost, I miss my mind the most! ~ * ~ * ~

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