The Monday After

I'm so glad I don't have to work this week. I am truly tired to the bone today. All that setting up and breaking down and smiling and being friendly all weekend wears a person out. I didn't change much about my display. It was a smaller area than I had before so I didn't put out my barrette display and I just scattered a few here and there on the table. And wouldn't you know it I actually sold one of them for the first time at a show. Saturday was a very good day, not an amazing day but a very good day. Sunday was pretty dismal. I had one good sale and several nice young girls admire my things and buy some little items. Saturday I passed out over a hundred business cards mostly to people who really seemed interested in my work. In addition I made right at 4 times my booth fee. I've heard people say that they are happy if they make 3 x's the booth fee so I really have nothing to complain about. I also made a great trade for a necklace I love with Jest Studio. There were a lot of people selling very traditional crafts there which is not a bad thing at all but it was nice to talk to someone else who also sold on Etsy and did some really unique work.

It was not as profitable as Strange Folk but who knows what will come out of the contacts I made. I talked to one woman at length about her dream poncho she would like me to make her and there were others who had ideas for custom scarves they would like. I went ahead and paid for my booth for next year and I will be in my same spot. It was a very good location in the main hall. Most of the people who are in that area have had the same spot for years. I found out that there was actually over a hundred people on a waiting list for this year's show so signing up for it last year on the day of the show was actually a great investment. I was lucky to have Diane next to me this year. It was so nice to have someone to watch my booth for me while a took a little break and talk to about the customers. She won't be doing next year's show which is a bummer but I did get to know the vendors around me who will all be there again next year.

I heard other vendors who have been doing this for years complaining about the effects of the economy. They said they were making around 2/3 of what they made at the same shows last year. I really don't have anything to compare it to since I'm such a newbie. My personal observations were that I didn't see the effect on the Saturday shoppers a bit. They were the die hard shoppers who fell in love with something and bought it. Sunday I felt it. People were much more hesitant. I could see them fall in love with something and then I could see it in their eyes as they talked themselves out of it. I really don't know how to stop the backward spiral of do I really need this.

I've gotten pretty good at helping convince someone how good they look in one of my scarves but I couldn't really do the other. It is usually really easy. I can tell when they put something on that really suits them, their face lights up and they get that sparkle in their eye. It's easy to encourage that impulse and usually once I show them the look in the mirror they have to have it. I am a shopper myself and I have a friend who always says do you want me to talk you into or out of buying it. I know what cues are helpful for taking the plunge. But I also know what it feels like to want something you can't afford and I don't want one of my scarves to be a regretted purchase. So I didn't do any truly hard selling.

I did tell people who were struggling with a decision that I take credit cards which sometimes does help make the decision easier. I must say signing up for Propay was the best investment for my craft show sales I ever made. If you are undecided about it let me tell you I've made at least $400 in sales I know I would not have made with out taking credit. It is definitely worth the $40 sign up fee. Overall it was a good weekend and I'm happy with how it went.


rad-tastic said...

Sounds like you had a good time! Awesome! :D

Brandon said...

We're so glad ProPay is working out for you. It sounds like you are doing really well at the craft shows. Keep it up! :) And thanks for the shout out!

Brandon Crotts
Senior Account Manager

The Hyperlexian Aspie said...

congrats on the successful craft show! beautiful booth!


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