Sunday, August 14, 2011

Indie Mart 2011

We learned a lot from our first outdoor craft fair: bring something heavier to weigh down the tent, always check that your name is spelled correctly and REAPPLY sunscreen every hour (I am still peeling.)

Overall, it was a big success. We got there early and had plenty of time to set up...which is a good thing because Seri and Junior put up our sign in the wrong order and it read "Three Birdies Fat." Our neighbor vendors were super nice and even gave us a discount when we bought things from them. We sold enough items to make it worth our time and saw a big jump on our Etsy site afterwards.

It was HUGE that we accepted credit cards. At first, we were nervous because the internet in Potrero was spotty and it took a minute to load, but we used our Square card readers for our iPhones and definitely made more sales because of it. Customers were impressed by the technology too (we felt like the cool kids!)

One thing I didn't anticipate was all the dogs. We had our owl and kitty pillows displayed in an old dresser, which made some of the items "dog level." A couple of pooches thought we were selling dog toys and started to reach for them. I could hear the owls' and kitties' silent cries for help and intervened just in time. Wheew!

It was great that we brought a mirror too. Lots of people tried on hats and once they saw how cute they looked, it was a done deal. Hats are tricky because everyone has a different shaped head and/or have preconceived notions about hat styles/shapes. "That style never looks good on me" "I can't wear that." Sometimes, you can! Maybe no one ever showed them how to wear it right. I think fashion tastes can change like taste buds. I never used to be a hat person. Now my closet is filled with them. I used to think berets were silly (and this coming from a theatre person who's worn all kinds of hats.) Now, I know that with the right outfit, they're super chic.

When you make something in your studio, you never know who's going to buy it. But because you spend so much time designing and making the item, you feel like it has a bit of a soul. You hope it will go to a good home. Believe me, I'm a little haunted by the thought of a bratty, destructive kid (like the one from Toy Story) buying one of my owls and dragging it off by the ear, with the poor owl's big eyes staring back at me saying, "help...me...please!" But people at craft fairs buy your things because they appreciate the work. It speaks to them somehow. And if they're like me, they take better care of it when they get it home. It was awesome to meet the people who took home our stuff. We can't wait to meet the next batch of customers!

For those who couldn't join us at the fair, here are some cute pictures Junior took.






















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