Sometimes it just happens. The slow craft show. Even if it’s a show that has done well for you in the past, even if the weather is nice, and even if you have all of your best inventory on display. There are some people in attendance but not as many as usual and they seem to be sticking to the middle of the aisles and not venturing into very many booths.
You are set up and can’t leave. How do you make the best of the time you need to spend at your booth? Here are some ideas.
Take product photos. You are out and enjoying good light so why not take some product photos? Even cell phones can take pretty decent product photos in good light. Use the photos when you get home to list your products in your online store. Use the photos to create a blog post about the show or about your products.
Take booth photos. Did you finally get your booth set up just right? Take lots of photos of the set up so you can remember how to do it for the next show. Take photos with shots of the whole booth so that you can share them on your blog, in your printed materials, for future show juries or even in your online store.
List some product online. If you have a wi-fi connection or wi-fi hotspot use the time to list some of the items in your online store. Even if you don’t have an internet connection you can open up a word document and start writing descriptions. That way when you get back home all you’ll need to do is copy and paste your descriptions into the store.
Take inventory. Why not get a handle on how many necklaces, hats or wooden spoons you really have on hand? Count them up and see where there might be holes in your stock so that you can create more when you are back in the studio. You might find that by counting and handling your inventory you are struck with new ideas or inspiration for future pieces. Bonus!
Sketch. Use this time to sketch out new ideas for future product or new artwork that might be included in future pieces. You never know when a doodle will turn into something really fantastic. You might also use your doodles and a tag shaped paper punch to create unique hang tags for future shows.
Make new pieces. If you have some of the tools of your trade handy you can use the time to create new inventory. Just because this show is slow doesn’t mean your next one won’t be a block buster. Be ready for it!
Network. Talk to the other vendors, trade cards and stories. You never know when one of these folks will turn out to be a great new friend and a part of your support network. I’ve done shows where the vendors were so bored they traded inventory. It’s how I got one of my favorite Christmas decorations and I traded it for one of my wreaths. It’s probably 17 years old and I STILL have it.
Now all of this depends on having some supplies on hand which is why I always try to pack a “busy bag” to take with me. It usually works like this – I take my busy bag and I’m super busy the whole show – OR – I don’t take the busy bag, the show is dead and I spend a lot of time kicking myself.
Always take a bag of things to keep you occupied and if luck is with you, you may never have open it up.
Have you ever been at a slow craft fair? How did you handle it?
By: Vicki O’Dell , The Creative Goddess