When I first began blogging, I thought I’d blog every Sunday but show season is underway, which means lots of prep work.
This is our 2nd spring here in Central Oregon and there are considerations to being a vendor that I didn’t have to contend with in California… mostly rain and distance to shows.
I got in with an amazing local group through Etsy. The Salem Etsy Team. They are amazing. They’re really active on Facebook and are the kindest, sweetest, most helpful and smartest group of gals I have ever met. Seriously. They’re also fun.
There’s an old saying “Choose a job you love and you’ll never work a day in your life.” and they make it a job to love.
So, my first show is in 2 weeks. I’ll be showing at the Ike Box in Salem (great coffee if you’re interested in coming down to see us!) It’s an old mortuary turned coffeehouse. The atmosphere is cool….there’s this huge room in the middle of the building with cozy tables scattered. Again, the coffee…divine!!
Anyway, we’ll be at the Ike box in 2 weeks on May 2nd. Can’t wait.
So, to get ready, I’ve had to order a table. I wanted to keep my display small. I mostly have spinner rings …small and compact works for me.
Several months ago I found a display case that is perfect for my needs and I painted it, replaced the knobs and made it mine.
I have a fitted tablecloth, which is perfect for me as well. No more balancing act with the table cloth! Yay <kicks heels in the air>
My riser is a plastic spice rack that I covered with material. I want all wood risers eventually but this will do for now. I picked it up at a yard sale for 1.00. It expands and is lightweight. If you’ve ever done shows…these matter!
There was a display store going out of sale so I picked up some display pieces there a few weekends ago.
I found some “I love you to the moon and back” signs and put those at the top of the display pieces. Then attached tiny chalkboard signs to the top of those.
I wanted to add height. The table is adjustable in height. I have had a back surgery and have a little arthritis in my hips. Bending over is the last thing I want to do when I’m setting up a display. This is a win/win in that department. I think when people are at a farmers market or a show….bending over gets old. If I’m bent over and the pain strikes…I’m less apt to stop and look if I’m a customer… I’ll be looking for a place to sit!
I have tiny lights I nabbed off Amazon awhile back. They’re magnets and clip on. I love magnets!
Speaking of magnets. I glued some strong magnets onto the back of my banner and drilled some screws into my table carefully spacing the screws evenly apart so the banner will a.) hang straight and b.) the magnet and screw will grab and hold. These are neodymium magnets. Super strong. Snaps on and stays on. I couldn’t find a way to keep the banner on without a string/rope/bungee cord/tape or those stupid clamps.
I’m VERY happy with the magnets! I wonder if anyone will find themselves stuck to my table? 😀 lol
My canopy arrives today. I’m off to find a waterproofing spray. I found it on e-canopy online. Comes with sidewalls and weight bags. Last time I had an EZ up and filled the bags up with sand…40-50 lbs each and my back was hurting. I wish I could find weights that are 10-15 lbs each. I would rather have many little weights… than one giant one. It’s all good though! It’s coming together pretty nicely!
Here’s my display
Displays are sort of like having a living room…we’re constantly changing the furniture around. I liken it to “nesting” ~ and I’m always moving my living room around. I don’t know if it’s because I’m never happy with the configuration or if I’m bored with my couch.
I wanted/needed a display that will fit into the back of my tiny 1997 Rav4 with the seat folded down. I know if I fold the seat down I can get a canopy in there as well as a bunch of other stuff. I needed to have it compact, easy to set up and high for my customers.
As a vendor, we want customers to come by and look over our wares and buy our jewelry and art. After we moved and I was so sick for months, it gave me the opportunity to be a customer at shows and slow down and take it in from another perspective. It was hard for me to bend over so I found myself avoiding the lower tables…or, if they had wonderful items, being a little grumpy because I couldn’t “reach them” by bending over. (I had abdominal pain) I passed many tables because of this and I couldn’t help but wonder…as vendors, how much do we think of the customer?
I know recently I went to a rock and mineral show (new addiction folks!) and I hadn’t eaten and could feel myself flagging into low sugar zombie land. I was EVER so grateful for the candy dish someone had so thoughtfully laid out.
It’s the little things folks…the simplest things that can make or break a show.
I can deal with the sales not being 100%, I can deal with the customers that say “oh, I can make THAT” (or the “don’t you think your prices are too high?”) and I can deal with long stretches on my feet.
What I don’t like doing is having pain because I didn’t think things through.
We spend hours making our pretties. We spend hours snapping photos to sell our wares online. Why not spend hours planning a booth, making it simple for ourselves (and others!)
Vending is hard work but it’s so much fun and rewarding!
Have fun vending!