| Chloe Crisp
Even though I started getting organised for my first craft fair the moment I knew I was doing it, I still felt worried. After all, I was a total newbie! My head filled with 'what ifs' and negative thoughts as much as it filled with excitement and good vibes.
I need not have got myself in such a spin as my early planning meant I was well prepared and actually had a great time (as well as a successful first event!)
So how did I do it?
How to survive your first craft fair as a newbie crafter.
Tip 1: Buddy up!
I can't recommend this more, that's why it's at the top of my list. Find a fellow crafter with a complimentary product, team up and share a pitch/stall. Not only does it half the cost, but you also have someone to watch your spot while you take a comfort break!
I shared a stall with my beautiful sister-in-law Louise who is a Younique make-up presenter (check out Lou's Lashes Younique), and my gorgeous friend Charlotte who has her own Etsy shop selling amazing clothes (visit Mikos Wardrobe). This was the perfect combination of jewellery, accessories, make-up, skin care and fashion - what more could a girl want?
Tip 2: Stock up early
When it comes to packaging supplies you should stock up early. This is especially important if you are doing a Christmas craft fair as suppliers may hike up prices or sell out the closer you get to Christmas. Ensure you have enough bags, flyers, stickers, tissue paper, ribbon, boxes, etc... Whatever it is that you package your beautiful crafts in, stock up early.
Tip 3: Think outside the box
You need to make your stall stand out by bringing a little personality. Don't buy the obvious props for displaying your pieces. Instead, think of how you can put your brand personality across. I opted for rustic white washed wooden crates, flickering LED tea lights, mirrored picture frames and ceramic dishes.
Also do a dry run of how you want your stall to look, when you're happy take a picture - it will make the setting up process much easier on the day.
Tip 4: Fantastic plastic
If your craft costs more than a few pounds then you should definitely invest in a card reader. PayPal Here offer a great little card reader and the money goes straight into your bank (minus the processing fees).
I opted for an iZettle card reader simply because they had the best offer on at the time (PayPal Here card reader was £75 vs iZettle which was £25!).
These card readers work in tandem with your mobile phone via Bluetooth and an app so you'll need an iPhone or Android phone, plus you'll need a data plan as the payment is processed securely via the internet - make sure you have a good 4G signal at the location before the event
Tip 5: Get on the list
Now, I have to admit I didn't actually follow this one through completely. I set up a MailChimp account so I could create an email subscriber list, saved a link to my sign up form on my phone, made it look all lovely ready for people to pop their email address in - but then I didn't even mention it to people that bought from me. #EpicFail!
However, I recommend that you do ask people to join your mailing list, you can use a service such as Sign Up Anywhere which allows you to collect email addresses even if you don't have an internet connection.
Don't ask people to write their email in your special little note book, they will scribble it out quickly and you won't be able to read their writing, which means you'll get a ton of bounce backs when you try sending your newsletter. #EpicFail.
Tip 6: Banter like a pro
I struggle with this one as I'm not a natural extrovert but a friendly smile and hello can go a long way to help break the ice.
You can usually sense from some ones body language whether they're up for chit chat so roll with your intuition! Pay them a genuine compliment, ask where the nearest food stall is, find out where they traveled from to get here. Try to use open questions that require more than a simple yes/no answer. I promise they won't bite you.
Tip 7: Be social
Don't forget to promote the event on your own social media accounts. Create your own FaceBook event and link to the craft fair's official website or FaceBook page in your event description. On the day send out Instagram posts and tweets, and be sure to geo tag them so people can easily find you, as well as using any official hash tags that the event organizers have devised.
#1: Make a stock list
Tick off what sells, how many and whether you did a discount. This will make it easier for you to keep a track of what is popular as well as do a stock take later!
#2: Bring A LOT of change
You'll need plenty of change in various coin and note values - trust me!
If you're about to do your first craft fair and have stumbled across my top tips I hope you find it useful and I hope you have a successful event.
Love and light
Please note: I am not affiliated with any of the website links or businesses mentioned. Prices and website links correct at time of publishing. I'm not responsible for content on external websites that I link to.