This day two of my Ultimate Craft Show List details of why each item is important. Yesterday we looked at the Selling Group. Today we break down the Display Group.
Tables - At most shows you will need to supply your own table(s). We use four. We have two 5 foot and two that are 6 foot. This seems to work best for the different set ups that we generally use. Maybe you only need a small table as a checkout table and the rest of your display is shelving or display racks. Whatever your needs, this is probably the second most important thing next to your product.
Props/Display Aids - This would be anything that you bring along to enhance your items and how they are displayed. I use some glass fruit in our Lathe Junkie bowls as well as some props such as an old cell phone and wallet. These show a potential customer what they can use the item for. Many crafters use items from around their home to accent their items. They can also be practical too. I have a large basket that I use to display dog toys and a big wire mesh basket holds scrubbies.
Table Cloths - If you use tables, table cloths can make a big difference in how your display looks. I used sheets for a long time. Just some plain white ones we had hanging around. They did their job going to the floor and hiding my bins under the table. I have since invested in some fitted black table cloths, which I highly recommend. You can find many options with a quick internet search. I have always used a over cloth on top of my tablecloth to accent what I am selling. I normally just get a yard of fabric and hem the edges (use fabric glue if you don’t sew). I have seasonal cloths as well as ones that work with items I sell such as a paw prints one for my dog/cat toys or a kitchen one for scrubbies. I have used as many as three on one table.
Price Signs/Extra Signs - As I have discussed before there are many options to pricing signs. Create signage that works with your display. I use laminated business card size signs that state the item name and price. These are then clipped to the basket I use to display the item with clips I found online. Our Lathe Junkie items have price tags on them but in either case I find that I always need an extra one or two. You will find that one always gets lost or or tattered or maybe you need a sign for a sale or a special.
Emergency Repair Items - What if something falls apart, tears or you loose a screw, bolt, nut or other part associated with your display? Go prepared with extras and a back up plan for repairs. Putting together a small kit with nuts, bolts, screws, needle/thread, glue or whatever you need is a great idea. This could be a lifesaver if something breaks at a show.
Tools Needed for Display - Do you need a screw driver, socket wrench, hammer or other tools to assemble your display? If so these are must haves on your packing list. Assemble a separate set of the tools you will need and keep them with your craft items. This way you will be prepared with the proper tools and not have to so searching the house for them every time you do a show.
Canopy/Side Curtains/Weights - Canopy related items are primarily for if you exhibit at outdoor shows (I have seen them used indoors too). If you do outdoor shows, a canopy is a must! Most formal art or craft shows want you to have a white one so that their exhibitors look uniform (Read my post on Indoor vs Outdoor Shows for more information). We found a great one on ECanopy. It is easy to set up and comes with sides that help block out the wind, sun and weather. This is very handy on windy days or even to block off your neighbors. It comes with a bag on wheels that stores everything away neatly. Canopy weights can be an added benefit to keep your canopy under control on windy days. Even though it comes with steaks, these can’t be used if you are set up on a street. You can find lots of great ideas on how to do this on Pinterest.
That is all for the Display Group. Tomorrow we will explore the Business Group. Remember doing a trial run setup of your display is a great way to make sure you have everything you need as well as experiment with your setup.
Whether you are seller of vendor items or you make hand crafted items; craft shows are a great place to sell your items and promote your business. If you are new to craft shows or you have done a few, there is always room for improvement. We have been selling at shows for many years and we are always looking for ways to improve on what we are doing. Over the years we have seen many things that people do that can result in an unsuccessful show.
The Bad Show…….
It had been steadily busy all morning for me and I finally had a minute to catch my breath. I looked across the aisle and there they were, the two friends who had a large pile of linens, blankets, and other items that all looked like they would sell well. Their inventory was crammed onto a table that was covered with a plastic table cloth. Their product pricing consisted of a handwritten list that was hard to read. I had heard them lose a couple of sales because they only took cash. They had obviously worked hard to have this much inventory but they were not making that many sales. They were just sitting behind the big pile gabbing between them, answering questions and communicating with customers only when asked. At lunch time they seemed more concerned with eating than working with customers at the busiest time of the show. As the day went on the smiles I had seen at the beginning of the day had changed to frowns as they sat behind the table with their arms crossed. I saw them pack up a lot of inventory to take home at the end of the day.
Here are the 5 things they could have done better to have a successful show.......
Hello! I am Linda Holton from Holton Handicrafts. I am partner to my hubby The Lathe Junkie, mother to two grown children, two fur babies, and four grandchildren. I love to craft and write and have a large variety of interests. On my blog I share with you my experiences and fun ideas for You, Your Pet, and Your Home with lots of other fun thrown in.
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