I’ve always had an affinity for craft fairs.
I remember walking through holiday markets as a little girl, just soaking in all of the handmade creations that surrounded me. It never really occurred to me that I would one day be one of those people behind those creations. But here I am, decades later, giving tips on how to be a craft fair vendor.
This past weekend I got the chance to have a table at Greensgrow’s Holiday Bazaar in Philly. It was my very first time being a vendor, and while I won’t be able to offer you expert advice, I can tell you this: It’s a lot of work, but it isn’t hard. And it’s so much fun. Any of you seasoned vendors out there, please share your own tips in the comments!
Bring a friend. As much as I like to be an independent person, I was so happy to have Naomi and Jana to help me set up and break down my table. Six hands are just so much more productive than one. If possible, it’s great to have someone stay with you the whole time. This way, you have an extra set of hands if you get a rush of customers – and someone to hold down the fort if you need to use the restroom! Plus, it’ll be more fun with a buddy.
Get creative with your table. My favorite part of the entire experience had to be setting up my table. It was so fun to arrange my items in different ways, and it was so nice to hear people say they loved the vibe. I would advise to bring extra materials like wood slabs, twine spools, scissors, tape, and even a hammer and nails. This way, once you see your space in person, you can let the creativity flow as you set up.
Accept credit cards. While many shoppers will come prepared with cash in hand, the truth is we live in an electronic world – accepting credit cards will result in more happy customers. If you have an Etsy shop, you can actually get one of their credit card readers for free! It plugs right into your phone or iPad, and you’re ready to swipe! So easy. If you don’t have an Etsy shop, there are other companies that sell similar products, as well!
Pack food. I’m the type who eats about 16 times a day – and I also happen to have a restricted diet, so I can never be too sure if there will be something I can eat. Take a quick trip to the supermarket before setup time, and stock up on snacks and water. This way, you know you’re set no matter which food vendors are (or aren’t) there.
Dress in layers. You can never be too sure what the temperature of the space will be. I was in a greenhouse, which ranged from warm and sunny to pretty darn cold throughout the day. If you dress in layers, you can add or remove as needed, and you’ll always be comfortable.
Smile! Maybe you’ll sell out of everything, maybe you won’t. It can be disheartening when people pass your table without so much as glancing in its direction, but the important part is that you stay positive throughout. Always have fun with it – you’ve just created your own mini shop! As long as you radiate positive energy, you’re bound to feel like the day was a success, no matter what the outcome.
Please share your own tips below – and I hope to see you all at the next one! Something in Brooklyn, perhaps?