Monday, July 30, 2007

hmmmmmmm...


So I have been thinking. And thinking. And thinking a bit more. However, it has finally come to a point where I have to make a decision. I have been contemplating setting up a booth at a local fall festival in my hometown. About 17,000 people mill through in a weekend's time. Now when this idea was suggested to me I thought it would be a no brainer and I would absolutely do it. Now however I am a bit more timid. Do I really have the talent to do this? Will anyone actually buy my baby blankets and quilts and magnets and bags and such? Its not like me to be timid and shy, but this is a big step. What if they walk by and say "what was she thinking?" What if I can't produce enough in that period of time (about 8 weeks)? I told myself I wouldn't make that decision until I finished the girl's bags for school. As you can see, the bags are finished. Sigh. Any help here? I know most of you guys have either gone to craft fairs and festivals or entered them yourself. What do you think?


29 comments:

Dee Light said...

I love the bags!!! If they are any indication of the kind of work you do your booth should be a hit!!

Jenn Maruska said...

The one thing I know for sure is that if you don't do it - you'll never know how it might have gone. It could go great or not so great - don't you want to find out? : )

I did my first fair awhile back and really enjoyed it. My advice: 1. invite friends and family to stop by and say hello. 2. take something with you to work on - it's great for conversation and will give you something to do if there are lulls in traffic.

You'll do fine! : )

Mary said...

Great bags!

I have done one crafty show type thing and probably won't do it again, but that's got more to do with my product/how I normally sell and general discomfort related to dealing with people in person.

madmommy said...

Go for it! I love your bags, and your magnets are so cool!

Randi said...

Hi Heidi,

I think that if you have the time to make up lots of items, go for it! I agree with Jenn---you have to take the chance in order to find out if it works.

At first I was really scared. I spent alot of time driving my family crazy by being unsure of whether or not to try it out. After jumping in, I am so glad that i did it! Having a booth is a lot of fun and it feels great to have people buy your stuff. The items that you dont sell can go on Etsy or maybe a consignment craft store or they could even be Christmas gifts.

One thing to think about is the cost. If you have to buy a tent, they cost about $200.00, and a table is about $100.00. But if you plan to keep doing it, it is money well spent.

I wish i could give you an idea of what sells best, but honestly, some of the things that I thought for sure would sell, didn't! Plus I sold a good mix of small items ($4.00 pincushions) and large items ($30.00 totebags), so you could just make what you like and call it good.

If you have any particular questions, let me know. I would love to chat with you about this!

kirsten said...

good luck with your decision. i've thought about this, too. i ended up thinking it's just too much time/stress for me to handle right now. but it could be right for you, who knows? you could always try and then learn if you like it/can handle it for the future!

Jane said...

My mom did craft fairs for many years in the 80's and loved it. It was something she worked on for many months and looked forward to each year. She loved meeting the people and talking about crafting. I think it can become a wonderful hobby.

I wouldn't worry about how much you have. Whatever you make will be enough. I think the magnets would be big sellers. They wouldn't be out of budget for most people and have so many good gifting uses (teachers, stocking stuffers, secretaries etc...)

Good luck!

jessi said...

I haven't done one, but I really want to at some point in the future. I would say, go for it!

mary said...

Do it!

kat said...

First of all your product is great. So that's a no brainer. Second, 8 weeks is enough time to get enough product done. (i think... but you're your best judge) Third, you'll never know if you don't just try it!

From reading a lot of blogs, I've learned everyone's first show is more of a learning experience than a hugely successful event. Meaning, they don't sell as much as they thought... but they totally loved doing it. So if you temper your expectations, and don't get yourself worked up about it, you should totally enjoy participating in it :)

XO :) said...

Ok, Miss Heidi. Listen up. After going to this crafts fair for many years now, I know that your products are where it's at. It always seems that the booths I'm most attracted to, are the ones that most people are also attracted to: 1) Food with samples (obvious one) 2) baby blankets/quilts and
3)Tote bags (which I think yours are cuter than any I've seen at the fair and in many retail shops).

I don't know how much you have to sell, but if you need anything to work on, I know holiday decor is huge too since it's right when fall begins. Everybody is in the mood for some cute holiday stuff and those booths are always busy.
Another plus is the fact that you have my help (I just want a few hours to walk around with my fam).

So, I can't give you the advice from the crafty person point of view, but as a consumer who attends this fair annually, I'm your gal. Also, I totally agree with the fact that you'll never know unless you try. If anything, do it this year and learn from it. Then you can decide if you want to do it again, or if you're better off using etsy.
By the way, just to push you in the direction of selling at the fair, I always have people asking me where I got my bag (the one you made for my S.Sis gift). They always assume it's from a retail shop, but I always have the pleasure of telling them that it's from a good, crafty friend.
So keep thinking, but I think you already know what you really want to do.

Katie Jean said...

I swear you are taking words from my own head!!! hee hee


I think you should just go for it! You have the talent and you'll never know if you don't do it!

lera said...

The bags are great.

I think you should go for it!!!! Get to work and get a booth.

capello said...

do it!

actually, i was thinking about bringing it up at our blogger meetup about having a booth(s) next year and coming up with some name for all of us. that way, each of us could make some stuff but we wouldn't be overwhelemed? i dunno. it was a thought.

but yeah, you should totally do it!

The King said...

Goodness. First I thought you were hanging up the blogging.

Once past that I thought, that is a big step. As organized as you apppear to be and as nice and useful everything you make looks, I think you would do fine.

The real sign, my verification word is gogal!

laeroport said...

Those bags are wonderful. I wimped out and bought one for my daughter. Such plans to make one - I even bought two patterns. Maybe in a a year or two.

As for the craft fair, go for it! What have you got to lose? And let me know when and where and I'll put it on my calendar!

Stacy said...

I haven't had the guts to do it myself...but I think it sounds like a most fabulous idea for you! Do it.

erin said...

Lacking guts here, too. But I think if you don't do it, you might wonder....

Chara Michele said...

I have not had the guts here yet either. Although I plan on doing this at some point! I really think you should go ahead and have a booth. Otherwise you might wonder what it would have been like... Plus those bags are lovely!

Mirre said...

Those bags are totally worth being sold!! Go for it and start sewing right away!!

Anonymous said...

I think you should ask Wil...he has a LOT of experience in this kind of thing. In fact, you might be able to go out on the road together. He could drive the motorhome. :)

Sounds like fun...glad you don't have the scars I have. I like your stuff.

will said...

Oh yes we can go to all the swap meets and play gospel music at a ear deafening level for the kids on our way there. we can live in the motor home and have a few dogs and all the kids in there. Hey you think your Mom and Dad would like to go along with us. This is funny if you know the whole story.

Di said...

I love the bags and I tihnk that you should try! It may not be the greatest experience ever but on the otherhand it could be fantastic!!

Ragged Roses said...

I think the bags are lovely. What's the saying ... nothing ventured, nothing gained. From what you've shown us on your blog, your work is gorgeous and I think you've got nothing to worry about. Say yes and enjoy!!!
Kim x

mommy to four j's said...

I say go for it what do you have to loose. Maybe you could get a friend or teenager to sit with you so your not all alone. Char

Tracy said...

Hi Heidi - my opinion:

We grow and accomplish great things by going out on that limb. Give it a try! Swim out into those unknown waters and see what you find. Because, later you might sit and wonder about not taking this risk. Stretch your wings and give it a go, girl! You DEFINITELY have creative talent as well - along with a charming personality others are drawn to - two ingredients in the recipe of success!

Blessings. :)

melissa said...

good for you, heidi, i reckon you should give it a try.
i've been doing a weekly market stall for 2 years now. it started off pretty slow, then got better, and i've grown lots as a person (in confidence, 'people skills', etc) AND made lots of crafty/arty new friends in my community.
your bags and baby blankets (i have first-hand experience about those) are lovely and i think they'd be a hit. good luck!

Mrs.Kwitty said...

OMGosh--are you kidding me?? YOur work is fabulous and I wouldn't think you would have any trouble at all selling it! REALLY.

And I agree with JennMaruska--you will never know if you don't try and then you'll drive yourself crazy with the don't knows.

Go for it!
Smiles, Karen

Stacey said...

You found me and now I have found you and YES I WOULD BUY YOUR ADORABLE BAGS!!!
(me shouting at you incredulously because you are tremendously talented my new friend!!!)

good luck with the booth. I am thinking of doing something similar next summer at our local farmer's market. :)