Do you enjoy art and craft shows?

@2004cqui (2823)
United States
January 5, 2013 2:36pm CST
I've been making candles now for about 6 months. I have a website and letting neighborhood gift shops know about what I do. My first craft sales I'll be doing are in the summer an fall this year. Do you think it takes repetitive participation in specific shows in the same spot every year to gain more customers? Do you go to specific shows knowing before you get there what booths you'll want to go see? I've suspicioned this for a while and wonder if I'm right?
4 responses
@13tyates (1610)
• United States
6 Jan 13
My mom has done craft shows, craft malls for many many years now. For a long time there was always 3 or 4 shows she would go to because she knew she could make money there due to the huge volume of people that went. I think it is good when you can get a following, but also just a huge volume of people can be your best friend. Sometimes it costs more to go to a show that has tons of people, but in most cases it pays off. Now, these days, she does more selling on online marketplaces specializing in crafts. There are many good ones out there and she enjoys doing it as a hobby and makes some pretty good side money for movies, books, etc. You may want to look at it!
@2004cqui (2823)
• United States
6 Jan 13
You are so correct on this one! I still have to find them! I know the products I have sell. I've found a couple craft shows that may have a high volume of people coming and going. I'm checking out the casino 10 miles from our summer place. I'm just trying to find as many tricks and tips I can find before I dive into this thing!
@13tyates (1610)
• United States
6 Jan 13
That's great that you have been able to find so many worthwhile venues! The more good ones you can find the better luck you will have finding the heavy buyers! My mom would always be so happy when she found a new show that had some great buyers that kept coming back. Many became long term customers through email etc!
• United States
5 Jan 13
I love arts and crafts shows. I myself make objects out of polymer clay. But I don't know any local store that would buy them from me. I am not actually sure how to approach them. I thought of opening a store through etsy. But again, I feel it will not earn me much because of the shipping price.
@2004cqui (2823)
• United States
5 Jan 13
Oh, you need some tips and tricks! Here they are: Go to Vista Print (the choice for new business owners) and get some business cards. Just walk into a gift shop, tell them who you are and show them what you do. Be ready for a yes, we will. Do your math. Take the cost it takes to make them by 3. 1/3 to replace product, 1/3 for you and 1/3 goes to your overhead. Tell them that you need to get this amount after their cut and sales tax, if any. I always charge shipping over and above the price. Ebay will nickle and dime you. I don't use them to sell anything. Start a website. Limit shipping to the lower 48 states. Try to come up with a shipping charge you can use for everything. Just dive in and learn!
• United States
5 Jan 13
I will go to them occasionally. Usually if they are part of another event I am attending. Have you tried selling on Etsy? Most of the merchandise sold on that site is home made crafts.
@2004cqui (2823)
• United States
5 Jan 13
I bookmarked Etsy and I looked around the site a lot but at this point I'm focusing on creating my website and getting the search engines to notice it. I'm also creating inventory. These are not the easiest candles to make and I won't be happy until I've created at least two different candles for each holiday, season and have two ideas for birthdays, weddings and anniversaries. So then I will consider selling on Etsy. Thanks for the idea.
@jillhill (37383)
• United States
6 Jan 13
Yes..you build a customer base that way. I would love to see photos of your candles! I really really would! Also pm me your website!