My first craft show ever was Art Fair about 5-6 years ago. All I sold was jewelry. I made a ton! I had no idea what to expect or what people would like so I made hundreds and hundreds of earrings, necklaces and bracelets. (I am a bit obsessive, but that is not news.) Years and a diagnosis of Carpal Tunnel later I started adding photography, cards, bowls and other items that appealed to me and weren’t so hard on the hands.
I haven’t really sold my jewelry at the Artisan Market much, mainly because I didn’t have room for it. This Art fair I clearanced out the jewelry, trying to get rid of much as I could. Next year I won’t have any at all which will be strange. Last night instead of working on new bowls I went through all the jewelry supplies and packed them up for a friend. 2 Rubber Maid containers is what I have left. (I once had a how jewelry room!) It is a little bittersweet, but I think it is the right thing to do. I can use the space for paper and other items. But I still remember the year I started making jewelry. I had gotten a free Fire Mountain Gems catalog which stunned me with the amount of supplies it contained. I ordered a small amount and of course did nothing with them. Then months later I found out I had mono so I pulled out the box of beads and started making stuff. From then on I almost always had a bead in hand. So, now 6 years later I am about to be beadless. A very strange feeling indeed.
I have set up at the Art Fair 6 years now (I think, the years just sort of run together.) and I have to say that weather wise this was the worst. Of course the week before was beautiful and this week is perfect. Which is just how it works. My mom said that she brought the weather with her from Tennessee. So, on Sunday when the Sun came out and the humidity went away I figured she had crossed the state line.
This was probably my most organized fair. I knew where everything was and could restock easily. I had a list of bowls I had on hand and as I sold one I marked it off the list. (One of my more brilliant moments!)
I was really curious as to how this year would go with a)the economy b) crazy hot and humid weather (Rain galore on Saturday) and c) the fact that jewelry wasn’t my primary focus. Turns out I didn’t need to worry. This was my best fair ever! I beat my goal by a small amount.
I haven’t done the final tally, but I sold about 75 notebooks, 40 bowls, 25 magnets and even a few photos. The only things that didn’t really sell were the coasters and the mirrors. But I think part of that is needing to work on a better display. I wish I had pictures to show, but I was too tired to take any. 🙂
This year was probably my best customer year as well. I got to talk to some great people and had a bunch of laughs. That makes it all so much easier.
Now I have to get ready for the Saline Summerfest in a few weeks.