From my last post, you may know that I was preparing for a very large show called the Delmont Apple N Arts Festival. The attendance was supposed to be upwards of 40k each year, and it's somewhat competitive to get into this juried Festival. Everything has to be handmade, which is very nice! If a booth is showing non-handmade items, they are asked to leave.
This was the second year I participated - last year, it started
raining on Friday (the day of set-up) and continued raining until Sunday
evening. On Saturday the festival decided to close early. On Sunday,
they didn't open at all. I decided I would give it one more try, as the
weather is not the fault of the organizers.
I have some lessons that I learned that I thought I would share! I'm sure many of you can relate, but this might help some of you for the future.
The biggest lesson I learned was - ATTEND the show before you decide to VEND at the show! Had I attended this show in the past, I would have realized that what is being sold is not the audience I am looking for. I am not putting down the people who are vending there, just saying that the audience most likely would not be interested in my items. Had I attended the show in the past, I would have realized this!
WEATHER is iffy - at any time - but especially in OCTOBER! It rained the whole weekend again this year. Doing outdoor shows in bad weather means low attendance, wet items, and cold feet!
I really admire all of you artists and designers who can do show after show, and make money at it. I did get quite discouraged at one point, and was ready to close up. But I realized that what I am selling is a luxury, and people just don't have spare money right now. I think my items are great and I do have a lady who owns a store in a trendy part of town who will be taking a lot of my merchandise, so I do have hope! Right now, this is not my gig, and I'll go back to making beads for now!