Amber is back with part 2 of her craft fair guest-post and this time her focus is on what sells and display ideas. This is great information because Amber is quite familiar with the craft fair world and I know her advice is from lots of experience!
Here is what she has to say:
OK so now you’ve signed up for the craft fair – what do you make?
Here’s a list of items I usually have at craft fairs and that sell pretty good:
- covered button ponytail holders
- coin purses
- small quilts (although these normally don’t sell well because they are a big ticket item but you can get custom orders if you have some quilts available to look at – and you never know, you might sell some too!)
- tote bags
- oilcloth box bags
- zip pouches/pencil cases
- iPad covers
- camera straps
- little skirts/dresses
- crayon wallets
- pillow covers
- baby items – bibs, receiving blankets, burp cloths
- any other items you’ve been wanting to try!!
You want to make things that you enjoy making – if you make 10 of one item by the 4th or 5th (or sometimes 2nd) you start feeling a little burnt out! Just plan ahead, make a list and then work towards making an inventory.
There are a number of GREAT patterns on Etsy and the web that let you purchase their patterns and sell the finished product in small quantities. Always check tutorials and patterns to make sure they allow you to sell items made from their pattern – you want to make sure you have their permission.
A few pattern sites I use are:
Keyka Lou – amazing bag patterns
Spoonful of Sugar – their tutorials are so cute!
JCasa – bib pattern, list taker pattern, coloring wallet pattern
My own tutorials! Lol!
I usually make about 10 of each item - unless it something big like a tote bag, an apron or a quilt - then I just take a few of those. It’s nice to have a variety of items in different price ranges too.
I price all my items the week day before the craft fair – that makes everything look cohesive and you can make price tags that have your email or shop address on there in case people need to contact you and have lost your business card.
I won’t go in to pricing here – there are lots of different opinions on the subject but I follow this philosophy – price your items so that you pay for your materials and pay yourself for your time plus a little more.
And don’t be discouraged if the craft fair doesn’t go as well as you had planned – it happens! Weather, conflicting fairs, economy – all these things come in to play. But think on the bright side – you’ll have lots of items to add to an online store or for your next craft fair.
A bench makes a great shelf on top of a table – or a cute display for pillows or blankets.
We have a great shoe rack that folds up flat that I take to every craft fair. I stand it on top of a table and have instant shelving.
I’ve also repurposed a crib I bought on Craigslist. I use the bottom wire support for a display on one side of the tent (I use zip ties - a crafters best friend!! – to secure it to the tent) and the side rail is used as a quilt display rack on the other side of the tent.
I also use a coat rack to hold and display tote bags. A dowel with holes on each end is a great way to hang skirts or dresses.
I have three folding tables that I take as the main part of my display. Two I use to put items on and the third I use as a cashier station. I keep a few items on this table but mostly it’s used for my business cards and to wrap and package sold items.
Chairs are also important since you don’t want to be standing all day – this last craft fair I took a bench we keep outside, threw a quilt over it, and we had a cute little sitting area.
Most of all – have fun and talk to people!
OK – I hope I’ve given you some great ideas and some motivation to try a craft fair! Thanks for having me Randi!!
Thank you so much, Amber!
PLEASE LEAVE COMMENTS FOR AMBER HERE IN THIS POST
***All photographs are Amber's and are used with her permission.