Hello everyone! I have my first ever craft show in July, and I would be lying if I said I wasn’t nervous. I feel like I have a good variety right now, but I’m afraid once I get them all out on the table it won’t look like much. What advice would you guys give when it comes to set up or anything you guys wish you would have known when you got started? I know my first show won’t be perfect, but I want it to be as perfect as it can be! Thank you in advance!
Set it up in your home first to see how it looks, so you know if you need to make adjustments or make more stuff before the event you still have time to make more stuff now if you need to!
Yes I am making as much as a can before the event! And that’s a great idea I will do that, thank you!
Check your event for how much space you’ll be given. In my experience 10x10 is common and if they provide a table it’s usually one 8ft table and one or two chairs. There’s a couple ways to handle this:
If you have a 8-10 ft table at home awesome use it to practice your setup. If you don’t feel you have enough, and don’t have enough time to get it where you want, using risers or baskets to place items in can help take up space and look fancy. (Also gives you the option to sort by price) If you don’t have a table at home you may want to go get some because many events - especially outdoor ones don’t provide tables at all and you don’t want to be on the floor. People don’t like having to get to the floor to see items and it’ll kill your back. If it’s outdoor you’ll also want a canopy, it protects you from heat or rain and customers are more likely to come to you over one they’ve got to stand in weather for.
If it turns out you don’t have enough space on the table and need a way to display more, instead of leaving the table where it is when you get there (generally at the front of your space so you can hide product safely behind you) push the table to the back of your space. Bring another table or something you can hang items off of. Gridwall is common for the frequent eventers but it can be expensive to invest in so don’t resort to that right away. To make more space arrange tables like this:
So you need 3 but 2 will do just know the flow of foot traffic so you know which side to place the second table. Bring table cloths and hide any extra items or boxes you used to transport your stuff under the tables.
I’ve seen people arrange their tables so you “walk in” to their booth but this limits traffic, they get trapped in there, some more shy customers won’t come in at all, and when people walking by already see someone in there they don’t want to come in and get cramped or have to navigate around people. They get then"I’ll come back" mentality but if they’ve already spent their money or are tired by the time they come back around you lost them.
Depending on how competitive things are you’ll see people using gimmicks or hooks to attract attention. Don’t get too caught up in that, a hook for people’s attention doesn’t have to be flashy or expensive on you. (Admittedly I have used a gacha machine ) but something like a large or fancy piece placed high for people to see works too. It’s why I did my Charizard pattern. I wrote it down just in case but I price him at 350$ expecting it to never sell he’s just an eye catcher because he’s about 3ft tall and 4ft wide. Even if you feel you have nothing to show off simply saying “hi” to anyone that walks by helps boost sales because it breaks them out of whatever they’re doing and makes.them look at you, be you’re own attraction! Others use mystery bags but those seem to be waning in popularity as it didn’t take long to figure out most sellers use them to off things that have been hanging out too long.
Don’t worry too much, you’ll be nervous until it starts then it’s all go. Try not to sit too often, and greet everyone that comes by with a smile. Good luck!
I LOVE all this advice! I will have my own table and a canopy is actually a necessity at this event so I’m borrowing one. I will definitely take all this into consideration and it is super helpful, thank you!
One other heads up, always be nice to the vendors around you bit don’t be surprised if they’re snotty.
Absolutely have someone with you, you gotta eat or go to the bathroom sometime. But also when it’s slow take a chance to run around and meet the other vendors.nyaving event friends is super helpful. And you can get ideas for what will work for your booth setup by checking out other people. Typically vendors who are friendly you’ll see again and again and they may be able to give insight on what events are best to sign up for and what ones to avoid. If someone’s mean just move on and greet the next one.
Vendors that are nasty don’t tend to last long though. I find this to be more common at indoor events or if the person next to you isn’t good at attracting customers and are trying to poach yours. My first event for example was a 3day, I dressed in a bright pink kimono day 1 (totally wear something that’s eye catching it’s worth it!) and setup what I practiced at home and greeted everyone that went by but halfway through day one realized my setup was backwards to the direction people were walking so did a quick fix to move it around. (This is why greeting is important too, my setup being backwards at first if I was just sitting there instead of greeting they never would have seen me!) The lady next to me was selling hand sewn items so not really competition to each other but she came over all friendly at first and said I must be such an expert doing events and she wanted tips. When I got nervous and said it was my first one and I had no clue what I was doing she soured and gave me a mean “don’t be surprised when you don’t make table money it took me 5 events before I did”. I had already made table money by then and didn’t understand, this made her more upset with me so it was an awkward 3 days as she stink eyed me all weekend. I only saw her at 2 other events after that before she disappeared.
I’ve since learned those people are everywhere and don’t let them get to you. They’re just stuck measureing their own success by how well they’re doing based on how “pooly” others are doing. If anyone ever asks how it’s going, the answer to avoid the comparisons or people that would be mean or superior is “eh, it’s going okay.” Their prying into youroneynisnrude anyway. The answer gives them nothing to work with, some will make the assumption that means they’re doing better then you and brag about themselves, just ignore it. Seek the good people