Sunday, June 6, 2010

The story of my first "craft show"

Yesterday I did my first show. It was a community fest that is held on the street behind the main street of my town. This fest has been going on for 24 years and it was, up until last year, held on the Main Street. I've been going to this fest for years, but this was my first year as a vendor. ( I didn't attend last year which I am now regretting).

First off, for two days before I was panicking about the weather. It was supposed to be awful out, rain, thunder and wind was in the forecast. It rained while we were setting up right until the fest started, what luck!

The first few hours were very slow. Not too many people came by, except my mom and aunt. A sale is a sale right? So we began to make friends with the vendors around us. Almost every vendor around us sold jewelry. It all of a sudden got very hot and muggy. Still only a few sales by 11am. I did give out quite a few business cards during the whole day.

My mother in law came by around 12:30 or so and I got a chance to walk around. I walked to see the booth that some of my co workers were manning from my full time job. That booth happened to be all the way at the other end of the fest so I saw all the other tables. I noticed that they gathered all the food vendors, except one, together and all the "big businesses" and non profits together. Most the "big businesses" were giving out a ton of free stuff. One was even giving out free dog bandannas (of course!) All the people were clustered by all the free stuff.

I had a few sales during the afternoon. Around 1:30 my mother in law had just left and my husband and I were sitting behind my table. All of a sudden this gust of wind comes and my husband grabs the canopy. The vendor that was three spots done from us wasn't as quick though. His umbrella shoots up, knocks out and destroys the canopy next to him and that one hits the canopy next to us but the guy caught it before it knocked his canopy down. Meanwhile there is a kid SCREAMING because the canopy that got destroyed hit him in the head. (He was OK). For the next hour or so it was very dead.

Around 3 we got to talking to our neighbors about shows in general. I told her this was my first one and that my friend was supposed to be sharing the booth with me but something came up that morning and my awesome husband had other things planned for the day but insisted on staying with me....blah...blah...blah. I told her that I figured I would sign up for the next event this business puts on in October in a near by city if this one went well. She said, nicely but also scary, don't you judge doing other shows from this show, this is the worst show I've done in years!" Strangely that made my feel better that it wasn't me, it was everyone.

All in all the show was definitely a bust, I barely made what Ii put into it. I did get my name out there though and both my husband and I made a few new friends.