Continuing our occasional series of posts with ideas and tips for new crafters, this time we’re looking at preparation for the craft fair itself. Here’s our Craft Fair Checklist.
So you’ve booked the date and the venue. A few days before the event, take some time to check that you’ve though of everything. Use our
Craft Fair Checklist
- Have you got enough waterproof boxes, clothes, covers if wet weather is forecast?
- You’ll need warm clothes if its going to be cold – and don’t forget a hat and pair of gloves.
- If we get a summer, have you got sunscreen ready.
- How will you secure your stock if it’s windy?
This may be blindingly obvious, but double check that you have enough stock to:
- Fill your table or pitch
- Reserve stock to replace all the items that you sell
- Enough to last the duration of the event
How are you going to show your products off to their best advantage?
- Try to get some height onto your table
- Use props, if appropriate
- Acrylic or wooden shelves give lots more horizontal space to show things off.
- Can you hang items from twigs?
An important part of your stall presentation is the table covering. Think about the colour, the fabric and whether it will show creases. Always ensure that your cloth reaches the floor at the front of your stall. Not only does this look neat, it allows you to hide your extra stock, your lunch box, etc out of the public’s sight.
Price Cards and Tickets
Always try to have price tickets, labels or cards for every item that you sell. Many people don’t like to ask in case they can’t afford to pay.
For some crafters, handwritten tickets are perfect, but you can always us a computer to create a consistent “brand” to your tickets and signs. It is good to laminate signs because card and paper starts to curl up at the slightest sign of damp.
Pricing and Discounting
Setting the price for each item can be agonising. The things to take into account when setting prices include:
- The cost of your materials
- The cost of tools and equipment used
- The cost of the space that use to make and store your craft materials
- The cost of your time
- At what price are your competitors selling similar items
- What you think the customers will pay
Al some point, you will get a customer asking for a discount. It is worth deciding what your discount policy is before this catches you by surprise. Some crafters never give discounts, others are willing to do so when, for example a customer buys several items or spends more than a certain sum.
Have enough change in the right coins that allow you to give change for £5, £10 and £20 notes. Keep your change (and your takings) safe at all times. Many market traders and crafters have a money belt with large pockets at the front that they never take off during an event.
Sellotape, Stapler, Scissors
It’s a great idea to have a craft fair toolkit. As an absolute minimum, you’ll need sellotape, a stapler and a pair of scissors. You might also find a use for clamps, pliers, screwdrivers, drawing pins and other things as you build up your experience.
We now always carry a bottle of bleach after a fair when our stall was over a very smelly drain.
Other items that you should keep in your toolkit:
- First Aid Kit
- Public Liability Insurance Certificate
- PAT Test Certificate if you use electric lights or appliance
- Food Hygiene Certificate – if you sell any kind of food
We give every customer a business card – and quite a lot of people who just browse too. We want repeat customers at future fairs and customers to visit our website. So our cards have our web address and we make a point of telling them about our calendar page.
Business cards are a cost before you take any money, but they are a wise investment. Our are ordered online from Vistaprint, but there are plenty of printers and other suppliers.
Over to You
What would you add to this Craft Fair Checklist. Please leave us a comment.