I have mixed feelings about most craft fairs I attend, especially in the last year - many are a mixture of quality artisan crafts and (for lack of a better word) crap - buy and sell items that are usually priced so low that I can't compete when it's jewelry. There is a lot of mass produced sterling silver jewelry out there. I complain and the promoters say that they were told it was all handmade by the vendor. Hah! 50 rings in various sizes with the same gemstone is one example of pieces made elsewhere. I am sure many of you who do shows have experienced situations similar to this.
One of the things that keeps me up the night before I do a show is wondering if I remembered everything? I am not a big list maker, even though I know keeping a list would be helpful, but do I do it, nope. I guess I like the challenge better. So I thought I would try and list what I currently bring to shows. Once the season is really up and running, I leave almost all of this in my van and only need to replenish things that have been used, which makes it much easier.
busts for necklace, bracelets
credit card machine
business card holders
pine boxes to display things on
inventory list of jewelry
sterling silver "S" clasps in different sizes
signs - for earrings price; that I accept visa mastercard amex discover, sterling silver, etc.
sign up sheet for mailing list
I'm probably missing some stuff - but that's most of it.
I am going with my daughter who will stay here tonight so we can leave early. I always seem to need to be early, even though I no longer need two hours to set up like I used to. I used to put lots of wondrous little things on the tables - like rocks framed in iron from Haiti, clay goddess plaques, and wooden pieces - that used to add to the funkiness of the table but I don't bring them any more. I realize that it added time to the set up and distracted from the jewelry. I now focus on the jewelry and try not to put out too much because when I do it's difficult to take it all in.
I suspect I am not alone in this constant battle to perfect the best setup. Would love to hear what others do.