I made ghosts and pumpkins from bottles and some paint during my day at Bad Cat Creations Gallery and Gifts for the 2011 Studio Cruise. pictured along with some of my other re-creations.
I am always looking for ways to improve my presentation and help customers have a better experience. There are many lists out there for both festival goers and vendors on how to have the best experience that have been very helpful for me. I have learned much from other vendors at the shows I’ve done too.
Here are a few of my own tips to add:
For Festival goers:
#1 Be comfortable and take your time to see everything. Make sure to talk to the artists and really get the most out of your experience.
#2 Bring cash if you can, smaller bills are best
#3) Bring your own bag. If artists don’t have the expense (and *ehem* the big waste) of supplying bags they don’t have to include the cost of the bag in their pricing.
#4 Please don’t take offense if artists refuse to give you proprietary information. These festivals are filled with predatory crafters on the hunt for something new that they can copy and sell. It is understandable for vendors to be protective; they are trying to make money with their craft. It is a lot of hard work. If you are truly interested - a better way to approach it might be “I would love to learn to do something like that. Do you teach a class?” or take their card and contact them at another time. If you are and artist yourself, perhaps you can work out a trade of information.
#5 Use those manners!
#1 See tip # 5 above! How you treat your customers not only reflects on you but on the entire event
#2 you don’t need advice from me – I’ve only done a few of these and you can find many blogs and articles on ways to be successful and have a good time. Ok, that’s #2 Have a good time! You put a lot of time, money, blood, sweat and tears into this – you better have a good time doing it.
I know I will have good time because my sister is coming to help me and keep me company and we always have a good time. If you are in the Bemidji area this weekend, come see all of the talented artists at the Opener Art Festival. Have a little lunch, a little wine and lots of shopping. Sounds like a great way to spend a saturday.