Thursday, June 6, 2013

::Craft Show Mini Series:: What To Bring

So I thought I would finish up the Mini Series that I started a while back about what I learned doing my first craft show.  I put in SO many hours of preparation and I would love it if you are able to benefit from some of my research.  Here's where we've been so far in this series... click on these for the full post:

Today I'm going to hit on "What to bring" and then I'll finish out this mini series with my tips on how to prepare.  Let's do this!!

There are a gazillion and one lists out there for what to bring to a craft show and you'll probably want to check those out if you're doing an outdoor show, but most of this will cross over.  Mine was an indoor show with the option of electricity provided.  I opted out (dumb!)  Lighting is so key to creating warmth and highlighting certain items.  I didn't think I needed it, but looking back I would definitely get it next time.

I had a giant clear plastic tub with my supplies, this made things easy to find when it got busy.
Inside my big tub I had two smaller containers... one for personal items:
-Mouth wash or gum
-Advil (You'll thank me after you've been standing for hours!)
-Small mirror (What if that salad you ate for lunch is still stuck in your teeth.  The horror!)
-Hair tie
-Protein bar (or meal replacement bar)
-Hand Sanitizer
One for "office supplies":
-Glue (for fixing any merchandise that breaks!)
-White out
-Duct tape
-Rubber Band
-Calculator (even if you have one on your phone, still bring a hand held... trust me!)
-Business cards!!!
-Price tags
-Square credit card reader
-Sharpie marker

I also brought a roll of paper towels and a trash bag for spills.
-Custom Order Forms
-Picture album for custom order ideas
-Inventory List
-Cash Box
-Gift bags
-Sales Receipt book
And I brought a project to work on during the slow parts of the show.  It was fun for me to be able to demonstrate how I make my scarves and it got people involved.
Wear a name tag with your logo!  It's a great way for people to associate you with your brand and to make you look professional!  I also recommend making a credit card sign so people will know that you'll take plastic!  That was a HUGE selling point for me!
And on the credit card front, I would highly recommend using the Square credit card reader.  They will send you one for free, it is easy to use, there is no up front fee and they just charge you a small fee per transaction.  Read all about it here.

This is my little sales station.  I have my cash box, calculator, Square, inventory list, receipt book and my gift wrap stuff all together.  It was a life saver to have all of this stuff in one place and quickly accessible.
This was my custom order form.  My customers liked being able to flip through a small photo album of the things I made to get ideas for different color combinations if something had already sold out.
What am I forgetting?  Is there anything you can't live without at your shows?  Please share!

UPDATE:  Here are the links to all five posts in this mini series:


Unknown said...

I am really enjoying your craft show series. I will be embarking on my first shows this fall. I have learned so much from all of your blogs!

I like that you had order forms available for custom orders and for colors that had sold out.
Can you please share any insight or tips about how you offered/secured custom orders and how you worked out the payment for these orders would be great insight for me. Also, what kind of turn around time did you offer and how did folks respond to the wait?

Thank you!

Anonymous said...

Loved this series! I had some really helpful info!

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