EJR Beads

Author Topic: Craft fairs  (Read 2026 times)

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Craft fairs
« on: November 27, 2014, 07:33:06 AM »
I have just recently joined the forum and have been reading a lot of the post on this section and it would appear that many of you attend craft fairs. Several post show disappointment at lack of sales and not enough footfall coming through the doors. I have been attending craft fairs for many years, I have a regular one I attend once a week and then I attend a lot of one off or annual events. Jewellery seems to be very dominant in the craft fair scene and there are many people making it, every week our organiser gets phone calls asking if they can have a stall for their jewellery and are dissapointed when the answer is no.

I see all manner of things being sold and I feel quite strongly that if a person attends a craft fair it should be with items they have made themselves and not bought in from China. I also see stalls that I know won't make much money because they have not given any thought on how to display, some just have a cloth over the table with everything scattered on top. I feel display is important and good lighting. Displays need to have some height to them along with colour coordination. I have one display that reaches to eye level and I have LED spotlights and I have noticed that the customers are atracted to my stall like moths to a flame.

Pricing seems to be a stumbling block for many. At one craft fair we had a lady turn up. I could not fault her set up, it was brilliant with several glass fronted cases displaying her jewellery but the prices were through the roof and at the end of the day she had failed to sell a single item. On the other side of the coin one of our regulars made over 400 at a craft fair, her stall was just perfect in every way with well thought out displays and her prices were quite reasonable.

I make things in wood and have just started to incorporate polymer clay into many of the things I make, hence me joining the forum. I would say that 80 percent of the things I sell are under 10. Many have said that my prices are very reasonable and I know if I were to put my prices up my sales would plummet. I am very happy with the profit I make. Some of the prices I see on stalls are way to high and feel the people are being a bit greedy.

At a monthly craft fair I attend we had a lady turn up for the first time last week, the organiser had rang me the week before about this lady as she thought the things she was selling might clash with my stall but they didn't. After she had set up I had a chat with her about the wooden candle holders she had on display. I did not say anything negative to her but looking at the so called candle holders I knew she would not make a sale that day. Her son, who works on a building site, had made them, he had collected off cuts from around the site, these were roughly sawn with no finish and bits and pieces had been gouged out here and there. He had drilled a series of holes along the length and put the glass candle holders in them along with tea lights. they averaged out at 25 each, for scrap wood. Needless to say she did not sell any. I was more than happy with the 320 I took along with 20 orders.

I do very well at the craft fairs, at the weekly one I attend we have lots of coaches turn up with tourist from all over the country. Doing so well does have it's drawbacks and most days at this time of the year I am spending 14 hours a day in the workshop and that's just trying to keep up with it all. After Christmas we have a 3 month break and it is at these times I concentrate on building up my stock again.

MelMcG

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Re: Craft fairs
« Reply #1 on: November 30, 2014, 10:36:53 AM »
I enjoyed reading your take on craft fairs.  I've never sold at one, but I love going to them.  My favourite ones here are the ones at National Trust properties, especially the Christmas one at Rowallane Garden, which is going up soon . I always come away with some lovely goodies!!

Mel  :)