Heading to your first craft fair and no clue where to start? Relax, and read on for help is on the way!
I was so nervous! Everything had to be perfect and I spent an entire day’s worth of thorough research to compile every tip and checklist to make sure it was. I literally did not sleep the night before. My biggest tip? Don’t sign up less than a week before the fair! 😂 It was one of the most stressful weeks, but I am glad for the overall positive experience and coming out of it with a small profit after booth expenses.
For your convenience, I have compiled all those hours of poring over Google and Pinterest into one place. Giving you only the best and most important tips. Hope this helps and hope your first or next craft fair is a success! Happy crafting!
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Questions to ask the Event Coordinator
Where are the spaces being held? Indoor/outdoor? Shaded/full sun? What is the general environment like?
This will help to know things you may or may not need in setting up, and generally good to know ahead of time so you’re not wandering around the event site. Additionally, it is never fun having certain expectations and suddenly realizing your assumptions were wrong. This is the time to be prepared!
Electricity. Do you need it? Will it be provided?
Make sure all electronics are charged ahead of time. If your event is during the day, lighting and electricity in general may not be an issue.
Tent required? Any particular coloring?
Believe it or not, some craft fairs require a uniform look and will specify a certain color. Most often events that require a canopy will ask for white. On the other hand, some events will provide the tent. Be sure to ask.
***If possible, bring someone to help! Not only is setup much faster and easier, if you have to step away from your booth or tend to a “little helper”, the extra set of hands is a lifesaver.
– Make it vibrant! If possible, try to invoke all the senses. Pretty or colorful table cloths and background visuals (think curtains, photos, product, etc) go a long way in catching the eye. Lighting, good smells, and music can add extra oomph.
– Keep it tidy! Think clean not cluttered. You may have a lot of product to sell and little space, but do your best to stay organized. Replenish as needed, don’t have all your product out at once. You want the customers to easily see what is for sale, not feel overwhelmed.
– Clearly price everything or have easily visible signage in front of grouped items. Example: “Bibs 1 for $10 or 3 for $25”
– Have photos of projects and services offered. If you already have a portfolio, bring it along, but also have a few larger photos of your favorite or best selling ideas to showcase. A portfolio is great, but requires people to step into your booth. Make it visible for passerby’s.
– Flooring: rugs, tape design, chalk signage are all great ideas that add an extra special touch and go long way in being visually warm and welcoming.
– Have a mirror available if your products are wearable.
– Use what you have for decor and display furniture. If not, thrift stores are awesome. Create a uniform or branded look by giving some new life to the thrifted furniture with a little paint. And since this is not for your house, you don’t have to worry about a fast/imperfect paint job. It’s shabby chic!
– Boxes covered with table cloths or painted work great to create shelves and additional dimension on table displays. No need for expensive shelving 🙂
– Don’t be afraid to get creative. After all, its a craft fair- get crafty! I used an old tackle box with some tissue paper to display jewelry and got tons of compliments. Help customer to envision using the product or in a fun and attractive way.
– Be prepared: Have a checklist ready and check off items as you are loading into vehicle. Nothing worse than having everything ready the night before but it not finding its way out the door.
– Business cards are a must. Even if you do it yourself and only print a few, have them ready and save one for people to take a picture of if you run out. If you loose track of time, just print one and have it displayed.
– Offer free gift wrapping and have your packaging station ready/organized and preferably close to your checkout station. It’s not fun checking a customer out only to be distracted by trying to find twine.
– Have a money box and square set up ahead. No cash box? No problem. I’ve got you covered with the easiest and cheapest DIY version ever. Don’t forget to grab the change the night before, at least $50 in small bills and change. I am the worst at this and it always bites!
***Make things easier on yourself and avoid pricing things with change. Instead of $4.50, ask for $4 or $5… Instead of $18, ask for $20. Not only will you make a buck or two extra, you’ll eliminate potential problems with change for both you and customers.
– Divide display into sections if you have multiple product types you sell.
– Inventory list : Prior to the event, this is great to make a list of goals for product to make. During the the day of the event, inventory lists are helpful to keep track of product sold and theft/loss prevention.
– Signage: Shop banner, custom order forms, receipt forms, payments accepted sign, giveaway/mailing list station with pens.
It helps to know your audience and tailor accordingly, both in regards to product offering and pricing.
Help promote the event to increase traffic. More people equals more opportunity.
Try to offer sale items/freebies. Most vendors agree- it is the items with lower prices that sell most. So offer a variety of prices, not just high end.
Don’t have something that would be very helpful? Like a pop up tent… ask around! I was saved by a good friend who let me borrow theirs for the event. If this is your first craft fair, you don’t want to rack up the expenses. Make sure this is something you enjoy doing and invest once confirmed and able.
Craft Fair Success FREE Printables