Craft Fairs TELL ALL – Things to Avoid when Selling Your Handmade Goods in Person

Craft Fairs TELL ALL – Things to Avoid when Selling Your Handmade Goods in Person



Craft Fairs and Trade Shows are challenging in SO MANY different ways. I go over my top 5 things to avoid when selling your handmade goods in person. These tips so apply to working any retail or customer service related job.
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Have you had any weird experiences when vending at a craft show? Do you have any words of wisdom for me? I’d love to hear your thoughts.

Please let me know if you have any questions for me! I love to hear from you. Motivates me to make more videos.

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Olivia Hayward

37 thoughts on “Craft Fairs TELL ALL – Things to Avoid when Selling Your Handmade Goods in Person

  1. Thank you for such a real and honest video, I am a little scared of my first fair on Saturday and now I know a little more what to expect I feel so much easier, thank you x

  2. I had watch this video 2 years ago when I first started doing shows and after two years I can confirm all these have happened to me. This past October I came back to one craft fair at a local church. I got my same exact spot because I registered early as a returning vendor. Last time I was there a soap vendor was in front of me, it was girl in her early twenties (around my age) and she was very quiet. Cool, alright I was hoping for another vendor like that to be across from me this past year. Nope. This past October it was another soap vender, but it was an obnoxious couple. They complained about the start (like it literally just started and they already were complaining… This was a two day event too soo… 🙄🙄) being slow. And then they would take turns looking around. And then they would loudly say how they were the cheapest, and best quality soap at this specific fair. How they put stuff like lard (which doesn't appeal to me at all) and how they were a home grown thing. Well, my sister bought one of their soaps and I just could NOT stand the smell it was too strong and horrid and made me physically sick. I never said that because I didn't want to be rude but I personally didn't buy their soap, maybe it was just that specific scent they sold but that scent and their attitude turned me off. Also, there were two other soap vendors there. One of them had amazing smelling soaps, they were also a home grown business and the couple was very sweet. I didn't buy from them but I wish I did honestly. And they were cheaper in price! This specific fair was slower than the last time I was there so on the one had I got to see vendors I had made friends with the last time, but on the other hand I didn't make much money and the obnoxious behavior of the couple across from me didn't add to the stress. I also smashed my finger nail in between the seat and wood of a broken chair (not at the event, later that night) so when I came back for day two their attitude was pissing me off. They are lucky I'm a Christian and that the Holy Spirit was holding me back and helping me to be kind and patient with them because I probably would have returned their rude behavior with more rude behavior if I wasn't saved.

    Thank you for coming to my Ted Talk.

  3. Wow. Thank you so much. I've been doing shows for years but never thought about some of these points. It's things that I kinda knew but good to hear and be reminded. Thanks 😀

  4. Thank you, thank you, thank you! I'm going to be doing my first crochet booth at our local Farmer's Market (eek! :D) and this is great advice! I've been doing a lot and I mean A LOT of research and you are the first to point out the nitty gritty things that one doesn't think about. Wish me luck and Happy Crafting, ya'll!

  5. I actually like comparing my booth to others. It motivates me to get a better stall 😂And also, what I normally do is go around the stalls and look at the booths, see what kinda setup/ things they're selling and most of the time it sparks ideas I can do for my next show.

  6. sorry, but I just want to watch this video again to listen to her voice. HER manner is absolutely lovely and calming. Thanks for posting and making this video. These words are so positive. Its true, you'll meet a lot on meanies out there, just ignore them. Lots of jealous people that just want to steal your sunshine, its not worth it.

  7. I love your channel. You are exactly what we need in the YouTube community from someone who could relate to crafters

  8. Congratulations on your marriage! Hope your honeymoon is really great. Thanks for sharing your expertise on craft fairs – I haven't done one yet and they rather intimidate me; so, it was good to hear some pointers.

  9. Thanks for the suggestions. I just wish you spoke more distinctly. At times, I couldn't understand what you were saying, as it sounded muddled.

  10. I think some times somethings that are considered negative aren’t. Like pictures. I’d take pictures of the things I think family would like and shuffle through the 5 things I found for my sister to buy only one. I know it sucks but if you buy the first thing you like you can’t buy the perfect thing at the last booth, or you get to the end and can’t remember where you saw that perfect coordinating piece. Try and stay positive people.

  11. Alot of people out there that have to cling to drama, I think that's the base of that type of behavior

  12. I love how your style is 100% babushka. As one who has sold at craft fairs, I have to say that the best way to get a sale is by engaging with the customers, aside from market research of course.

  13. Hi Olivia, My name is Debora and I am pretty new to the craft fair scene, I have only been knitting and crocheting for a couple years. I have done maybe 6 fairs in and around where I live and the things you were talking about I have ran into. I was not going to do any more but after listening to you I am going to try a few more times, I just want to thank you for this video and your help. Have a wonderful day!!

  14. I found when I had a garage sale that people would pretend not to notice when their kids took stuff without paying and walked off with it. Of course they acted as though I were the one in the wrong which is what to expect from those low types. I would speak up loudly no problems doing that.

    Trading would be fun

  15. thanks for sharing these tips, Olivia. I am also introverted, and it's refreshing to see a fellow "youtuber" who is successful without having to be super dramatic and outgoing. I'm glad God created such a variety of personalities. We are all needed

  16. I loved doing craft shows but never did well on them. On ebay I did very very well and even had people collecting my stuff. It was a lot of fun selling to people all over the world. Isle of Man, Singapore, sweden, and even russia!

  17. Thank you for this very informative and approachable video!! I’m hoping to rent a booth for the first time in a few months though I know nothing about craft fairs… I’m going into it blindly but I’m extremely enthusiastic about it

  18. Your way of dealing with nasty, obnoxious customers is spot on… of course your “art” is personal and your “babies” it’s difficult when someone criticizes them…I would only think as time goes on, an artist, designer, crafter, grows a “thick” skin and learns to deflect that negativity…

  19. I find that some of the best advice comes from the timeless cliches. Such as, "if you don't have anything nice to say, don't say anything at all." That way you never get yourself involved in anyone's drama and you never have to worry about what others might be saying about you. Small talk gossip about movie stars or other public figures as in what they wear or their latest fling, etc., might be okay but to talk about others directly around you is cruel and hurtful. You never know what someone has been through to cause them to behave in a way that doesn't necessarily fall into what you've typically experienced. I've been through so much myself that my jump to thought is more often than not a consideration of another's life, situation, or circumstance. For all you know, the person acting out of sorts may have just suffered the loss of a loved one (which includes pets 😊) or undergone a serious break up. The fact of the matter is, don't judge or make assumptions. Here we are again, "do unto others." So simple yet full of the only wisdom you'll ever need.

  20. Nice video.. I had an incident right when we opened at a Flea MKT. Two women came up to my tables. I'm a quilter and a painter. Hubby would cut things out for me. I quilted table runners, wall hangings, placemats,stockings and etc… The one lady picked up a runner.she was inspecting it like # 9 operator !! I ask if I could help her?? She returned saying, I'm looking for the tag that you cut off!!!! Omg!!! Her friend said lets go! She said,No! I hate to see someone say they made something they didn't !!! Wow! My hubby stood up n told her I made everything here! People were starting to look, even the other vendors…. I took a deep breadth and looked her straight in the eyes and thanked her soooo much for the compliment.. That was the best thing anyone has ever said !!! Her friend grabbed her ,apologized to me and started walking. I did yell, thanks for the compliment , again… Come back anytime!!! The other vendors came over afterwards and said that was the best ever !!! Kill them with kindness…😁😁😁

  21. I am an artist and have done a few Art Fairs which include jewellry makers. They always seem to do well regardless of anything! lol I just wanted to add to the issue of people asking how long did it take you to make this…or being shocked at the price. I learned this from another artist. That is that the client is paying for your experience as a creative person too. All the workshops, training, experimenting, failing… over the years…they are paying for that too! And in my case, they are paying for a one-of-a-kind item. It seems people don't value that anymore…at least in my experience. Just thought I'd add that because I didn't really see it mentioned (sorry if I've repeated something already said). I did not read all 364 comments 😉

  22. Wow, thank you so much for posting this video! I am a new crafter. I've been in 2 shows, and out of 25-27 wreaths I've only sold like 4. This 2nd show, I made small things also like sock snow people and also Mason jar candle holders, those did good. This video gave me hope! God bless you, Merry Christmas!

  23. Your number one advice about staying out of drama is absolutely key because I’ve had a fair share of people coming up to me being nice but FAKE at the same time.

  24. Thank you for your advice and experience! I was wondering, do you know where I can find local fairs around me? I tried googling it but im not sure if perhaps there is a website for them hopefully? (I dont know, they have them for farmers markets).

  25. I think it's also important to know that's it's not your fault when you don't sell many things, often it's the fair itself and the slowness/people just being in the buying mood. Don't take things personally. I did a fair just yesterday and though I had so much positive feedback I only made 1 sale. It was really disheartening but realizing it was the same for most of the vendors made me feel better!

  26. I had my first theft last month! I had always just sold quilts and crocheted hats, but had recently added some smaller items. A woman was asking about one thing when she shoved another item in her hoodie pocket. I was flabbergasted and didn’t say anything. It happened early and put a damper on the whole event. I told the event organizer. Ugh, the drawback of smaller items!
    allsquaredup.blogspot.com

  27. Good advice. Thanks for sharing your realistic and objective experience. You could have just said it is all fun and roses but you were honest and explained what to be prepared about – and it never hurts to go into a craft fair prepared.

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