Craft Fair update

6 12 2009

My feet still hurt a little, despite being able to sit much of the afternoon.

The craft fair was really busy in the morning, with lots of people around. It died off after about 1:30PM, and by 3PM there was hardly a soul. By that time it was pretty hot and most of the shops in town had closed, so it wasn’t surprising that people weren’t out and about.

Having never done a craft fair before, I don’t have any comparison for how well I did. What I do know is that I sold 30+ items to about 15 customers (I counted how many bags I had left from the initial 25 I put out) over the 7 hours.

My biggest seller was luggage tags (14) , followed closely by bookmarks (11). I also sold two sets of coasters, three  journal covers, and three miscellaneous items.

The most popular thing — based on the number of people who touched it — was my lizards and reptiles journal cover and the blue peacock feather one (not listed on Etsy yet). Everyone ‘loved them’ but no-one loved them enough to buy them! 😉 And lots of people oo-ed and ah-ed over my fabric art pieces — again, without purchasing.

Most people I spoke to were very aware that the prices of handmade items don’t reflect the reality of the labour that goes into each piece.

One observation I made was that some people just walk straight past your booth. They visit the booths next to you and the ones across the aisle, but skip yours entirely. Then it dawned on me — they’re just not into fabric stuff. I do the same with booths that have things I’ll never buy, like jewellery, smelly soaps, perfumed candles, etc. Once I realised that, I didn’t feel like it was me or my display.

Another observation was that while most kids were well-behaved, a couple seemed to think it was OK to touch stuff with a half-eaten, crumbly chocolate cookie in their grotty little hands! Fortunately, most kids (and their parents) were very good.

So, was it worth it? At face value, I did OK financially. But when I deduct the costs of the booth and the large cloth over the table, then divide the remainder by the hours (gathering together everything I thought I’d need, setting up, pulling down, plus the 7 hours manning the booth), then not so much.

There’s probably no profit in the sort of craft I do as I can’t (and don’t) charge a realistic amount for labour. But I enjoy the creative process and I enjoy working with fabric and thread. If nothing else, the proceeds will pay for more fabric! 😉

Here are some photos taken before the doors opened, while the vendors were in the final stages of setting up; my booth is the one with the purple cloth! (click on an image to see it in a larger size)