Saturday, September 24, 2011

The day that was...

As promised, here's an update on today's craft sale.

I got up at 5am, arrived at the venue for set up at 6:10am (it was still dark outside) and got a great parking spot in the dark empty parking lot! It made for a very quick retreat at the end of the day!

I somehow (using my Herculean muscles) managed to get all my stuff into the venue in 1 trip. I don't count moving in the card table seeing as I carried that in when I registered.

It took me about 45 minutes to set up. The pottery guy next to me arrived before me and was still tearing down when I left at 2:20pm this afternoon. He had a lot of pieces that all required wrapping and shelving he had to put up and then tear down. It made my setup look small.

As I have said, this was my "throw it all at the wall" sale and see what sticks. I started to really doubt my stock and pricing most of the day. My neighbours had done this sale before and had had really good results. Today nobody had an exceptional day unless you had a really great product that people really wanted to buy.

What was the difference today from the previous few shows? The difference today was there were a lot of other activities (Breast Cancer run etc), kids recreation activities have started up and oh yeah, the weather outside was freaking gorgeous. When the heat is over a 100F, those at the Farmers Market are all over A/C and the indoors. When its nice out, not so much.

My day started out with the lady who organized the event. The State tax folks had paid her a visit and wanted their share. Since I have filled out but not submitted my tax paperwork so having signed up as a hobbyist, I have to submit taxes somehow to the state. I was planning on using this sale as my sales test as to the frequency I suspect I will need to remit taxes so this just kinda complicates things but nothing that a call to the state capitol won't fix. And of course a cheque remitting taxes due.

Next came the clock watching. I started off thinking I might do okay. But as the clock ticked onto 10am, I started to envision a very bad day. I almost sold a matted 5x7 at one point but I am not really ready to take cheques so I lost a sale because the potential customer didn't have enough cash. Note to self, be willing to lower the price a smidge under special circumstances. And figure out a way to accept cheques without the fear of bad cheque writing....

Thankfully I had a couple of friends keep me from crying and helped put things in perspective. And loads of ohhs and ahhhs about how wonder my photos were as people stopped to look but keep their wallets firmly shut.

By about 10:30am, I got my first sale. I could barely handle it. I was speaking with a man about mats and matboard when a lady selected two cards and proceeded to the matted prints. She ended up buying two cards. Yay a sale! I stifled the urge to jump up and down screaming.

So all in all, I made my entry fees back plus a little. I learned many lessons, the first one being plug in your phone the night before so the battery doesn't run out. If I had, I would have a picture to show you of my display!

I think I'm going to limit it to one show a month or maybe two as we get closer to Christmas. Many folks took my business cards so maybe I will get some business traffic. But that's for tomorrow.

Right now, I just need a good night's sleep (I have no feeling from my mid calf down to my toes) and I have to order some more supplies. I am completely out of supplies and if I do get any orders, I have no pictures or mats/cards to make the items with. Besides, maybe I can sell some mats/mat boards sets at my next sale! I'm thinking maybe bringing a file folder with prints too just in case someone wants to buy some....oh the entrepreneurial spirit is strong but the bank account isn't too willing!

I will try to update everyone with some stories about the kids when my fatigued brain recovers!

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