Saturday, November 17, 2007

Experiments.

So, last night I packed up what was completed in my small world of crafts, and headed west. My sister and dad woke up early this morning to help me unload, set up, and price everything at the craft sale. The sale started at 9, we arrived about 7:30. Note to self: don't ever arrive this early again.

We set up in my spot and got things arranged. My sister and I then immediately started looking around. It became clear that there was a lot of diversity in craft (as well as quality of craft). It also became clear that this would probably not be "my crowd." In other words, we weren't sure that we would have any success because the things I had brought were very different from what others had.

Anyway, here was the set-up...

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(my sister, knitting her first hat, looking surprised (or maybe shocked and confused by the other crafts))

and the details...

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My mom's feather tree holding random and hastily arranged little girl ornaments. These sold fairly well. Frankly, I really enjoy making these, so I have a lot of them completed.

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Beer Bread Mix. Not much to say about these. I made a bunch of these last year for The Preemie Project craft sale and to give as gifts to neighbors, etc. I really like the fabric I found. These are much faster to put together now that I've perfected printing the labels.

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The Gnome rice bags. People didn't "get" these. I wasn't aware there was anything to "get," but apparently people didn't understand the concept. So, I have a few extras to donate to The Preemie Project and give as gifts. That's really what my intent was. I did drop one off with my grandma who got a new hip this past week.

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These were just regular rice bags that can be heated up. The outer shell can be removed for washing and is made from various fabrics. Here's the thing about these... there was another vendor selling a low-quality version of these at the next booth. And they were trying to make a hard sale. My version was larger and made with higher quality materials and thus resulted in a higher price. Well, this leaves me with a few extras to use as gifts, which was exactly my plan to begin with.

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The cupcake ornaments. I think that these were really cute and turned out even better than I had thought they would. I had every intent, initially, to only make enough of these to decorate my pink feather tree. However, once they were finished I decided to take them to today's sale and make some for The Preemie Project. These were a "hit," if, in fact, I had a "hit" (doubtful). This is a bad picture. These are much cuter in person. (Abby - your inbox is full and my email keeps bouncing back. I'll be mailing something to you after turkey-day.)

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The houses. I had originally purchased the raw version of these to make a little village type scene for my mantel. I'm happy to say that I still have one left.

This was my first attempt at any sort of selling of my wares (aside from small baby gifts here and there and commission type projects). I'm not sure if this is for me. I ended up making a little money (and covering my expenses) and selling more than I had imagined. I just have to wonder if I would have had better success at a different venue - maybe? I guess it is difficult to find the right venue with the right clientele looking for items in your price range. It seems like it would require a lot of luck. I may consider doing this again next year if I had more time to prepare which would allow me to create an appropriate product without killing myself over 2 weeks. I could consider a different show as well to give it at least one more try.

All in all it wasn't too bad. I think I sold more than most of the other vendors aside from the vendor selling mass manufactured (and purchased wholesale) tiny little stretchy shirts. Don't get my sister and I started on this.

7 comment(s). Tell me what you think!:

Anya said...

I love your little cupcake ornaments! You should have definitely charged more! How did you make them, they are beautiful and realistic!

Knittripps said...

It sounds like overall it was a good experience and you learned a lot. Thank you for sharing.

Jennifer said...

Your booth is adorable and I love the cute little things you made. The set up/display is awesome. How about opening an ETSY shop so we can all buy things?

Wool Winder said...

Your booth looks great! Since you covered your expenses and even made a little money, I'd say it was a success.

AndreaLea said...

Your hand-mades look so so professional. And your presentation is always perfect!

Debbie said...

Sounds like it turned out pretty well and you learned a lot.

Laura said...

Aww! Your booth is great and everything you took was awesome! Think of it like this: to sell with a peer group that matches your degree of quality and professionalism you'll be paying a lot more for the booth space and will need a lot more inventory! It's hard to make much doing the craft thing unless you spend a TON of time and energy on it which might take some of the fun out of it?

Are the rice bags the sort of thing you warm in the microwave and then use as a heat pack? I've heard of using lavender in those too. I wonder if mixing the rice with lavender would be a good idea? Hmm.

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