Monday, November 25, 2013

End of shows for 2013

We had our last show of the season last Saturday.  It was at one of the local schools {we show every spring and fall}.  It was very busy, a great turnout.  I think it's one of the quickest days I ever had when doing a show. I can always count on my regulars that stop by every show.  This year, some of them even brought friends!  What a great compliment.

I work full time and while I love creating, I admit I don't spend a lot of time on promoting my side business.  Every year, I promise myself I will work harder to get my name out there.  Then, before you know it, the year rushes by.  I've decided {again!} to work on getting to more shows next year.  I plan to start looking after Christmas and coming up with a list of potential venues.  Then, we'll see.

I did two things with this last show, that I had not done before, and hope to see some results.  I developed a tri-fold pamphlet to hand out at shows.  It tells about my work, has some pictures and hopefully will encourage customers to contact me for custom pieces.  Secondly, I had a Holiday Special give away.  Anyone spending a designated amount was able to fill out a little card for a drawing after the show.  I made 2 beaded necklace and earring sets and I had them put which one they wanted if they won.  I randomly picked the winner tonight and sent an e-mail to her, plus sent a general thank you e-mail to all the others. Here's the picture of the two sets I made.

The winner was the only one that chose the red set.  Soooo, the blue one is still up for grabs!

Til next time, I hope everyone has a great week, stay safe, be happy and... if you celebrate have a Happy Thanksgiving.

Sunday, November 17, 2013

Getting ready for the holidays

I really don't know where the time goes.  Less than two weeks until Thanksgiving, then the mad Christmas rush. 

We've been lucky with fair weather the last few weekends {until today - there is fog and drizzle!}.  In October, we did a weekend show at a local fairground.  Now, one would think that October would glide in with some cooler temps and the promise of color changes to come with wonderful fall scents and the desire to get outside.  Well, let me tell was so hot, we were sweating just standing around!  The crowds were no where to be seen and sales were low.  Even the event planners were surprised that some vendors did not show up and traffic was slow.  But, I always look at it as an opportunity to meet other artisans, network and sometimes, get good ideas for my small side business.

Somehow, the fall decorations didn't feel right with 90+ temps!

One of the yearly shows I have been doing in November is no more.  The planner indicated she just wasn't doing it any longer.  Luckily, my daughter put together a fundraiser show for my grandson's boy scout troop.  We went yesterday.  As this was the first time she did anything like this, she only had six vendors and the turnout was low {even the troops parents didn't come!}  I was able to sell some items, as I was the only handmade crafter there.  She plans to try again in April and will work on getting more vendors and a lot more advertising.

Because the weather has been so nice, I have been going out with my neighbor the past few Saturday's.  We went to some local shows and took one day to drive around taking pictures of barns.  She wants to put together a series of pictures for one of her rooms.  Well, this has lead to us talking about taking a photography class.  I realized, though I have a pretty good digital camera, I really don't know how to use all of the functions.  I've spent some time researching aperture, shutter speed, etc, but I learn better by hands on work.  We'll see.

Now, we are getting ready for our last show of the year next Saturday.  This show is usually very busy and we do well.  Then I really need to get myself organized for the holidays!

Til next time....stay safe and be happy.