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  1. #1
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    Default Dipping my toes in the water - bit of help please

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    I and some fellow crafters in the Enfield area feel that the craft groups currently opperating are not all that they could be. Some are 'closed' groups so no new members can join and others never actually meet but only run events and charge for stalls but then fail to advertise adequately or sign post, as a result I am looking into formulating some sort of craft group, which I hope would cover not just jewellery but knitwear, doll/bear making, wood turning and many other things because I feel that an opportunity is being missed here, not only for us all to get to know each other but also to offer our goods to sale to the public.

    Throughout history when there is a recession there is a rise in craft, not only because people cannot afford to go out and therefore look for things to occupy them in the home, but also because the public (fed up with fat cat companies) look for handmade and unique items they can purchase off individuals.

    I have a feel that we could meet once a month, initially for people to introduce themselves, what they do, how they got started and then for people to showcase their new projects or work. Then I feel we could find out how much it costs to rent one of the local halls so that goods could be offered to the public for sale - and here is where I need a bit of help please. As the group would be non-profit making, am I right in the following points:

    1. With regard to the meeting we only need to charge for things like tea/coffee/bickies if people want them and that would be a basic 10p for tea or coffee and whatever for biscuits.
    2. With regard to the rental of the hall, presumably the more people who want to take a stall the cheaper the stall for each person becomes?
    3. Why is there a charge at the door for going in - I have been charged up to a 1 for entering one of these events (if people are paying for the stalls and thus covering the hall rental, what is the charge on the door for?
    4. What makes a craft fair successful in peoples opinion.

    I realise I am probably being somewhat naive and would appreciate any help I can get on this matter.

    And, finally, are there any crafters in or around the Enfield area who would be intersted in joining such a group?


  2. #2
    Critchley's Avatar
    Critchley is offline Super Moderator Super mega humungous crafter with too much time on their hands and chats too much!
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    What you mean is that you would like to have your own Crafters Association. I think the term 'Craft Group' can indicate a far more relaxed meeting of crafters who meet to carry out their craft work in a congenial atmosphere each week and have nothing more important to organise than the next weeks meeting. lol. Yours would have to be on a more formal footing, Exactly how you would go about it I haven't a clue but would like to wish you great success with it.
    Carol
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  3. #3
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    Thanks Carole,

    Yes, I think you have hit the nail on the head precisely, A Crafters Association, I think that is exactly what is needed and we could call it just that Enfield Craft Association, its perfect. But as you can see, this sort of thing is so new to me that I didn't even know what to call it. I think it could take some time, but I am willing to give it a go if there are enough people who want it and also I think people within the group will help as well.


  4. #4
    Critchley's Avatar
    Critchley is offline Super Moderator Super mega humungous crafter with too much time on their hands and chats too much!
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    Mmm. Food for thought. Fortunately we do have a lot of members with just the right experience to advise you so sit tight and I am sure you will get all the help you need.
    Carol
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  5. #5
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    Sounds like a great idea and I wish you well with it.

    I don't have any real experience with this, but I do have a couple of pointers which might help:

    Most craft fairs are run to make a profit for the organiser - this is why there's a charge for entry as well as for tables. Any successful craft fair will need to be advertised too, which can cost a hefty chunk - do look into advertising costs before deciding on a table price.

    Charging a nominal cost per person per meeting would give you a small fund to work with. I'm not sure how a not-for-profit organisation works financially, but you should be able to open a bank account for it (the bank will probably advise). You'll need a bit of money upfront to book your first fair venue and advertising.

    Good luck!
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  6. #6
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    I see what you mean, even if we flyer the area ourselves, there is still the cost of the printing - but I think I would prefer to have it the other way round, I would ask any joining the association to pay a nominal fee so that entry at the door of any event is free, because I think charging at the door would put people off, the crafters want to they could then factor the cost of subscription into the sales they make. Thanks for this, because it is really good to have a heads up on these things. Its a good point as well, a bank account would give a clear and transparent way of showing people where the money is spent. Also

    From peoples experience does advertising in the local paper really work? The craft fair on last Saturday in the Town was practically empty and the only advertising she did was in the local paper - I think I am prefering to ask the crafters who join to flyer their local neighbourhood, stick a notice round lamposts and stuff like that - or do we think that is just naff? Does advertising the local rag normally turn up quite good attendance?


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  8. #8
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    Thanks for the link and the info, much appreciated. Yep, I agree we are going to need to advertise to build up the group because we need it to be broad.


  9. #9
    Christa is offline Senior Member Mega Crafter
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    I am in North London and if you are open to those outside of Enfield, I would be interested in learning more about your plans

  10. #10
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    I felt this warranted an update. The craft fair is running well. Having initially started it up I handed it over the group and they are now running it on a monthly basis. I am assuming, and I hope, that it still runs for the benefit of the group and not one single individual and I am told that there is good attendance.

    All it needed was a push to get it going.


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