I’ve been told I need to get out and sell my work, rather than just hide behind a computer screen selling on Etsy and Folksy. Not that I actually sell anything on Folksy but you get my drift. A few years ago I did a couple of craft fairs and to be honest I didn’t do well at them. The first one I didn’t prepare properly for and sold one hair snood all day, it was the wrong market for them so I was very lucky to sell even one. The second craft fair I did wasn’t advertised at all well and was poorly attended, again I sold one item and that was to someone I knew. Mark that as a double failure. I do ok on Etsy, after tax and expenses I do bring in a profit every year and it is slowly building but I would really like to sell more and not just online.
Having to think about selling face to face at a craft fair is not something that fills me with joy, I think its a really expensive way to sell, the stall cost is never less than £15 add to that public liability insurance and a supply of business cards and shopping bags and you can see how its easy to lose money. Lets not even bother to factor in the time spent manning the stall. Plus you have to be pretty thick skinned and I’m just not. Its the thickening up of the skin that I need most and craft fairs would help me with that enormously. I’m much more drawn to approaching independent shops and asking them to stock my wares and perhaps that is the best option for me. My other big issue is that I refuse to drive so I’d have to lug my stock to any craft fair on public transport which would be a bit limiting to say the least. I have signed up to do one craft fair this summer at the local carnival, they have a makers market on the second day which is usually pretty good. I’m having to think hard about what I will make to sell there as my usual stock of 1940s style hair snoods are not going to cut it at a non-vintage event. I do have a short list of things to make for a stall and that will be another skill I will develop – a bit of discipline to make things I need to make rather than just making things I fancy making from one moment to another.
Quite a while ago I had a piece of goldwork embroidery framed locally and got lots of really good advice and guidance from the woman working there, she did say at the time that I should make more of them and come back to have them framed there and they would sell them for me. Of course I did nothing about it but now I’m thinking I should pop back in there and see if the offer still stands. I’ve got two weeks off work so maybe I’ll bite the bullet and pop in there this week to talk to them about it.