Hello September! It's always an exciting month as it marks the beginning of the school year and the fall season. It is also the start of the busy craft show season. I have participated in quite a few craft shows over the years with my previous shop Momomints and wanted to share some tips that I've learned that would be useful for anyone that is preparing for craft shows this season. Below are 5 helpful tips on preparing for a craft show.
1. Plan how much stock is needed
This one can be a bit tricky and may take several craft shows before you are familiar with how much stock to prepare for each show. Bringing too little and you are left with a bare table but bringing too much and you may have extra items that you are unnecessarily bringing. The time you spent preparing this extra stock could be spent on somewhere else in your business. Especially during the busy craft show season it is very important to spend you time wisely and efficiently. To start off try making enough stock such that you can cover the booth fees and bring your more popular products.
2. Design a simple craft booth display
What I've found over the years for craft show displays is the simpler the better. That doesn't necessarily mean just laying your products on the table but rather having booth displays that are compact and easy to transport. You could try shelves that fold down or crates that doubles up as both a booth display and holds your products when you're transporting them. A few weeks leading up to the event create a mock display set up to find what fits and test out display options so that you're ready to go on that day.
3. Transportation and venue details
Planning out your route ahead of time and where to park will help save you from a headache the morning of when that might be the last thing on your mind. Most craft shows will send you reminders and an email letting you know about the venue and parking info before the show. Make note of things like loading times, where to park, booth number and vendor layout. Another important thing to check is to make sure everything fits in your vehicle.
4. Pack an emergency craft kit
Taking into account Murphy's Law - "Anything that can go wrong will go wrong", so best to be prepared. I like to pack the following in my craft show kit:
- safety pins
- snacks i.e./granola bars, cookies
5. Prepare a good float
Depending on the craft show, the price of your products and whether or not you have other payment options available such as Square will determine how much float you will need to bring with you. I like to have a good amount of $1 and $2 coins and very few larger bills on hand. If you have prices that end in $0.50 then I would suggest rounding your prices to make float money easier for you.
Bonus Tip! Ask for help.
Something to keep in mind during craft show season or a busy time for your business is to ask for help. It could be something simple like helping with packaging or labelling. You will be surprised by how much extra time you will have when someone is helping with these simple tasks. As a thank you you could treat them out for dinner or create a gift basket. Be creative after all we are creative individuals.
Thanks for reading and I hope these tips will be useful for you when preparing for your next craft show! Please leave a comment below if you would like to share any of your tips on preparing for craft shows.
Also speaking of craft shows, Mint & Woolly will be at its very first craft show this month at the Etsy: Made in Canada Market in Vancouver, BC !! Taking place on Sept 23 - 24 at the Rocky Mountaineer Station. More details to come!