Spirit Grooves

All’s Fair at a Craft Fair….

By on February 6, 2013

photoI did my first Craft Fair. Had a booth and laid it all out there. I also was smart enough to have a good friend by my side which made the outcome irrelevant from the start. Which was a good thing since financially it was a bust. Pretty much for everyone, I think. (Photo: I’m the roundish one in blue and my friend, Alexia, is the smiling blond.) For the record, she’s an amazing designer and her stuff can be found at OnePlanetJewelry.com (at least until she gets her Etsy store up and running.)

It turned out to be more of a family day which makes sense as it was to raise money for a local park. Somehow they just didn’t get the word out enough to bring in lots of people. So basically it was a bunch of lovely, if starving, artists admiring each others work.

I got pretty filled up on praise, though and that is something I really needed. It can be so isolating to create and create in one’s own space. I know I like what I’m doing but start to doubt I’m on the right track. So now, after experiencing people’s reactions to my stuff, I feel like I just need to work harder to get it “out there”.

flow_v2_50fc2420044b21.32261470Em made the most money with the bookmarks she’d made. So that is about what was selling. (She made it in photoshop and wrote the original poem.)

Anyway, I knew it would be a great and affordable way to figure out what I need to do for the next one. This one was only $50 for the booth which I split with my friend. I was so glad I didn’t kill myself making more stuff! I was worried about that and now it just makes me laugh. Now I know what I need to bring and what I don’t need to bring. I wish I’d had things better organized and pre-priced. But really I did pretty well. Yeah, me.

Of course, I spent money too… so that brought the expense of the day up. But it was soooo much fun. Stephen and Em and I found an artist we really liked and bought a couple of her giclee’s. I don’t know how she makes them so inexpensive but they were totally affordable. And we just love that Em wants to spend her money on art. Of course. She also wants it all hanging in her room. Art hog!

Stephen was a total trooper. Sick as a dog and hauling our stuff for set up and break down and going to fetch Em and her grandmommie halfway through.

2013-02-02 13.23.01reducedOne young boy, about 8-10, was in love with the swords I make. He was looking at them and asked me how much they were. I was so sad to tell him. The cost of silver is just insane and they’re super heavy. Still, he came back a little while later with his mom because he had to show her. Boys love them. Actually all kids seem to. I love that so much. It’s such a sweet compliment.

And several people seemed to love the dolls and want to just old them. I never knew how they’d come across and what I heard was that people felt the comfort I was hoping they’d give.

This was bliss for me.

2013-02-02 12.55.45reduced

This is part of my view from the booth. We were the first booth so I got to look out into the canyon mostly. Plus, this is my favorite Spirit Friend Doll. This guy is so odd; I love him.

Making money would have been great, but this was really a gift.

Stephen sent me a text to say that he was so proud of me and it meant a lot. He knows how hard it is for me to stand there and try to sell my things. Or even just to be out in the world for the whole day. Trapped! I hate to be trapped. I hate to commit to anything where I can’t leave if I want to. I’m a runner. (not a healthy, take a run each day runner.) I flee.

So that’s my story. In terms of motivation, and inspiration and feel-good praise… I raked it in.

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Our booth with view of the whole fair behind us.2013-02-02 13.22.50reduced

2013-02-03 11.06.07reducedI bought this pink pop-up and this is Em playing in it the next day at home. It was totally cool. She wanted to have her own fair, but we ended up setting up to wet felt out there. She was teaching me because she’s learned in school and I don’t know how to do that yet. Also, it was a gorgeous day. Life can be so sweet.

Posted in: Art, Rock Paper Tree


  1. Renae
    February 6, 2013

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    I’m glad you had a good experience. I’ve often wondered what it would be like to set up at a craft fair.

  2. Cammy@TippyToeDiet
    February 6, 2013

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    How awesome are you? “Leaning into the fear”, as Brene Brown calls it. I’m so proud of you!

  3. jan
    February 6, 2013

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    Hey you ha fun at least!! Kudos for you for going through all the work to set it up.

  4. Melissa
    February 6, 2013

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    You’re amazing! So glad you got positive feedback and time to steep in the presence of other artists. Sounds like a smashing success to me!

  5. Didi
    February 6, 2013

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    The first few times I set up a booth I ended up with the same results just about. Not a lot of people were there, because of a lack of advertising, so I didn’t make a ton of sales. However, I gained a lot out of going, so it was worth it. My first cost only seven dollars, but I sold absolutely nothing. The second cost 15, and I walked away with 80 dollars (four items sold). And the third was free, and I only sold two items.
    I think it’s better to have slow venues in the beginning, because they are great practice runs!
    We have an arts and craft fairs directory in my state (Wisconsin) so your state may have one online as well. They are extremely useful because they tell you about how many people attend (good rule of thumb is to only go to shows that have at least 3,000 in attendance), when you need to apply, how much it costs, etc. The internet is a great way to find yearly events, and most cost between 25 and 75 dollars to attend. Nearly all of the shows around here require a white ten by ten tent, but I got mine for a steal off of ebay.
    It’s great that you jumped in and got out there for your first show! I need a lot more stock before I can do another one, but I can’t wait.

  6. Ellen
    February 17, 2013

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    I’m so happy to see these pics, tree. And you should be proud of you, too. What you did was a huge commitment and it ISN’T easy to put yourself out there for people to see, sometimes. But it will get easier. The fact that you see so much positivity in the day, despite the fact that it didn’t go as you might have liked financially is a wonderful thing.

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