When you change your city, state, or even country it can be intimidating to get into the new craft scene. Moving is stressful enough, and then you’ll have to find other crafters and events. I’ve been there (as have many others) and it might not even be your choice to move somewhere else. I recommend starting by looking online and talking to any connections you already have in other fields, as well as taking some classes. Let’s talk about a few ways to meet fellow artists and learn about upcoming events when you’re new!
1. Explore Any Connections
Even if the only people you know aren’t handmade business owners it doesn’t hurt to ask them if they know of any local craft fairs. In particular, creative-type people who shop at this kind of event are great resources! You can even attend together and see if they know anyone there.
2. Read Local Newspapers and Magazines
Local media like newspapers and city-focused magazines will have event listings and special profiles about the craft world. You can even get free papers that feature upcoming events in all kinds of arts and genres. Craft fairs are especially popular right now, so there are likely to be some in your new town.
3. Enroll in Classes
Classes are a great way to get to know artistic people as well as small business owners. They can be crafty courses like pottery or figure drawing or business-related workshops to improve your marketing or finances. Chat with your fellow attendees and exchange business cards! You can even ask others where the good art shows are and if there are any craft clubs in the area.
4. Join Online Groups and Check Social Media
This is one of the most important suggestions- online research! You’ll be able to join mailing lists, find out about craft events, and reach out to other artistic people. Like Facebook fan pages for craft shows and join groups that promote and encourage the local handmade scene. You can also apply for shows online, making the internet an essential tool for craft businesses all over the world.
5. Attend Some Shows
You’ll also meet local artists and craft people by attending shows and fairs. Once you’ve been online and checked the paper to find out what’s coming up, make it a point to go to a few. Bring your business cards to do some friendly networking, and also try to meet the show’s organizer if possible. This is also a fantastic way to see if a particular show is right for you and your products in the future.
6. Keep in Touch
Save business cards that people give you and follow up with some of them at a later time. You can also attend crafty gatherings and club meetings, shows, and gallery openings, and set coffee dates with those you find interesting. A friendly email can also go a long way to keep in touch with people you’ve met at craft events.
What other ways have you made friends and connections in a new craft scene?
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