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Thursday, October 27, 2011

Preparing for my very first craft show

Ahhhhhhhhhh.  Saturday I'm vending in my very first craft show/fair/festival/whatevs.  I'm pretty scared.  I'm a pretty socially awkward/shy person, so I'm also pretty anxious about just putting myself out there and interacting with *strangers*! Haha.

As you may know, I'm an avid researcher and reader for any topic I'm unfamiliar with.  Thus, I've been scouring the blogosphere and Etsy forums and reading all about how to prepare for a craft show.  Other than just general nerves, I feel like I'm as prepared as I can be.  I've had the tables set up in my living room for about 2 weeks now.  I've set up my Square account and practiced swiping credit cards.  I've got $100 in cash change.  I've got receipt books, an inventory spreadsheet and a clip board, handheld mirrors, a vending apron, table risers....

The past month I've taken my inventory from about 45 items to 240 items (wowzers!).  I've also been diligently working on creating displays and a table setup as cheaply as possible.

Here's my practice setup thus far (I haven't ironed the table cloth yet so please ignore the wrinkles!)


Here's a summary: I've got a 4 foot table on the left with a printer's tray that my helpful husband spray painted white and screwed in tons of little half inch brass hooks.  I hung crystal earrings of various sizes on the hooks.  On that table, I also have a cheap wrought iron file folder holder and an old little shutter as earrings displays.

The table cloths are just cheap full size bed sheets I found in a neutral tone.  I bought a little cheap lace tablecloth to spice up the crystal earrings table.



My main 6 foot table has all my stud earrings on the right (hopefully I'll be listing some of these in my Etsy shop soon).  I bought the main three frames on this table from Goodwill for cheap and spraypainted them.  The one in the center is actually a memo board I covered with new beige fabric.

You can see the ring box I discussed making in this post in the center of my table.

The memo board dispays all my bunting necklaces, and the blue frame on the left has hooks on the top to hold my other necklaces.

I hope the printer's tray will grab some peoples' attention...



Bunting necklaces!

For the stud earring display, I strung twine along the back of the open frame and used tiny sized clothing pins to hang up my earrings cards.


I found the little wire ferris wheel at Goodwill and used it to hang my charm earrings.  I also got little tiny canvases, spray painted them brown, and used them as my pricing signs.  It was quite difficult grouping over 200 items into just a few price ranges, but I really did not want to price each item individually as I thought it'd just be too time consuming.

What do you think?  Give me your feedback!  My biggest worry is that I do not have a SHOP NAME anywhere on my table! I mean, I have my business cards out, and I had bought a large canvas to paint Lazy Owl Boutique on, but there's just no room to put it out on the table so I gave up....hopefully it's not too big of a deal.  I'm thinking if this whole craft fair venture is successful, I'll order some sort of professional banner with my name and logo and everything.

Wish me luck yall!



Tuesday, October 18, 2011

I survived!

Sigh of relief!  Sorry I have been MIA for the entire month of October.  Things have been busy, busy, busy since I returned from my Disney trip.  One thing at a time!



I survived my very first half marathon!  It feels like it happened so long ago, it feels like it maybe didn't even happen.  That boost of adrenaline I was expecting to get whilst running through the Disney parks definitely did NOT happen.  And I really could've used it haha. 

It was a long, tiresome journey.  We tried to take a nap that day since the race started at 10pm, but I was too anxious to fall asleep.  When the race finally started, I was just amazed at how many PEOPLE there were everywhere.  I've never run around that many people before, and it was tough navigating and winding and dodging everyone, especially since I was run-walking.  I don't think things cleared up for me until mile 5 or so.  I plodded along at my slow and steady pace til about mile 11...at this point I felt like I wanted to die.  Miles 11 to 13 seemed to take a lifetime and a half.  By the time I reached the finish line (at exactly 3 hours flat) I had tears in my eyes!  They weren't really happy tears haha, I just seemed to be overwhelmed with emotion at finally finishing.  And being slightly annoyed that I had made myself do something so painful.

As soon as I finished and stopped moving I suddenly could no longer move.  I was meeting the rest of my party in Canada (the race finished outside Epcot), and I think it took me 45 minutes to hobble over there!  Needless to say, we all passed out after that!

Since returning to Houston, I've been consumed by getting my shop ready for my very first craft fair.  I feel like a little Christmas elf.  I think I have just about TRIPLED my inventory in the past 2 weeks...not to mention creating all sorts of various displays and jewelry holders for all my items (with the help of my gracious husband of course). 

I hope to have a full post about my preparation for the craft show soon, that should be exciting to share. 

Just inputing all the new items in my inventory spreadsheet system has been overwhelming, so I am way behind on taking photos and listing new items...but I will show you a few new necklaces I've been able to add to my bunting necklaces line recently:


 
Cool tones bunting necklace
  
Maroon bunting necklace
 
Orange bunting necklace







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