And even more…
Craft fairs: (Cost: 1-2 days of your time, ~$free-250, depending on fair) Craft fairs are great for a lot of reasons. Firstly, they average about 5% of what it costs to do a trade show. Secondly, you can sell your stuff directly to the public, allowing you to make you some cash while conducting first-hand market research in the process. Thirdly (I didn’t know this until recently), your wares often don’t have to be hand-crafted to be eligible. And fourthly, the press comes to you! Not only do writers for various publications visit craft fairs, they are often sponsored by a magazine like Craft, BUST, or Adorn, and are therefore guaranteed to get coverage.I would never apply for a craft fair that charges a non-refundable application fee because it indicates to me that they are either:
- Shady or greedy people who are okay with taking money from people who might not get anything out of the deal whatsoever.
- Such terrible businessmen/businesswomen that they need to charge application fees in addition to booth fees just to keep the venture profitable.
Here are some excellent fairs to look into that don’t charge non-refundable fees to apply:
- Bazaar Bizarre (Boston, Los Angeles, Cleveland and San Francisco)
- Renegade Craft Fair (Brooklyn and Chicago — charges an application fee which is refunded if you are not accepted to the fair)
- Craftland (Providence, RI)
- Bust Craftacular (New York City — charges an application fee which is refunded if you are not accepted to the fair)
- i heart Rummage (Seattle)
- Depart-ment (Chicago)
- Handmade Arcade (Pittsburgh, PA)
- Stitch Fashion Show and Guerilla Craft Bazaar (Austin, TX)
- Felt Club (Hollywood, CA)
- Indie Craft Experience (Atlanta, GA)
- No Coast Craft-o-rama (Minneapolis, MN)
- Most fairs sponsored by your local Craft Mafia chapter.
If you do handcraft your wares, you should definitely also have a storefront on Etsy, the biggest online craft marketplace out there.
Check back tomorrow for Inexpensive Marketing and Promotion Part 3!