After a few short weeks to build up our inventory and create new critters for adoption, we've officially started the SPRING Show Season!
It's funny that most people don't realize what goes into a craft show, but let's break it down into a few bite-sized pieces so you can get the gist (leaving out all the gory business-y details like permits, accounting, and finding the "perfect" venues for selling):
1. Come up with a mega-super-awesome idea and pray that nobody else on the planet (or at least in your neighborhood or crafting community) is doing this same thing.
2. Buy waaaayyy too many supplies, and figure out how to justify purchasing 20 yards of super-cool fabric that MAY take you 20 years to use. Be sure to visit at least 20 stores, and dig up 20 coupons to try to get the best deal. But when you get home, be sure to hide your buyer's remorse, and then facepalm because you realize you forgot the thread, glue, or buttons you actually WENT to the store for.
3. Make stuff. Then make more stuff. Then stress out and get no sleep the night before the show because you forgot other stuff, and aren't sure you are bringing the RIGHT stuff. And other stuff. Oh, and don't forget you WILL need lots of caffeine in the A.M. to deal with all this stuff.
4. Pack your vehicle as tightly as you can. Then realize you can't fit it all, and unpack some of it, rearrange it, and squish as much as you can into bags instead of boxes so you can squish it all in. Forget about seeing out of the car...that's what side mirrors are for, right? Then remember that you didn't fit the DOLLY in the car, and start again.
5. Drive to the venue, praying you didn't forget anything, and wonder to yourself what that weird rattling in the back of the car could be. Did you stop for coffee yet?
6. If you didn't hire teamsters or a small mob of teenagers to do the heavy lifting, it's time to unload your vehicle into the venue. And guaranteed, no matter how carefully you may have measured and planned out your booth or "space", know it is NOT going to work out that way! Did you remember your table, tablecloths, crates, shelves, baskets, display pieces, chair, etc? Here's where the greatest creativity comes in...how to make do with what you brought, when they thing you MOST NEEDED is sitting at home.
7. Wave your magic wand to have your goods fly into a perfectly arranged booth to display your goods to their best advantage, remembering to have multiple levels, clear focus, and places for the eye to "rest". Wait...you don't HAVE a Magic Wand? Guess you'll have to do that the hard way!
8. Now sell! And pray. And cross your fingers, do a little dance, and make a wish. (I won't mention the process of tear-down, clean-up, go home, unpack, inventory, and then do it all again next weekend!) And hopefully, you will make 3 times the amount you paid for your space, or at the very least, enough money to pay for the supplies you still have to buy for NEXT WEEK'S shows!
Okay, so if you're NOT a crafter, you probably think this is an exaggeration. You probably think it's a matter of "Make, then Sell". Nope.
I hope this simple little set of instructions will help you greater appreciate the true MAGIC that goes into setting up one of the many AMAZING Arts & Craft Shows that happen around the World EVERY WEEKEND!
Bless you, all of my lovely and dedicated Craft Friends, who do this on a regular basis! You are not only ARTISTS, you are SAINTS!