Sunday, December 14, 2008

Hampton Roads Artisans Street Team presents Holiday Handmade Market

Back in July, Mary from JKCreative Designs , decided to create a local team for those of us Etsy obsessed in the Hampton Roads area of Virginia (Virginia Beach, Chesapeake, Norfolk, Suffolk, Hampton, Newport News). I have been part of this team from the beginning. What started out as us, talking about having a home show with our little team, turned into us needing to find a venue for approximately 20 vendors.

Another wonderful team member, Jodie, from Gappy Girl, , found us a place, in her church and preschool at Messiah United Methodist Church in Chesapeake. We worked hard to get all the factors to work together. Kristen from Fly Leaf Studios , was in charge of marketing this event.
I have to say I was so surprised at how beautiful the venue was, and how great the set up was. We had a really good, diverse, set of crafters, Jewelry makers, candle makers, book makers, wood work, quilting, hand bag designers, knitters, jelly makers, artists, even doggy bone wreath makers!

This was the 1st event ever for us, in a venue that had never held a craft show, with a brand new team. Oh yeah, and with only a $50 marketing budget. With that, I can honestly say it was a pretty good show! Now remember I have had 2 craft show experiences. One at a church back in March, where I literally did not sell one thing (and this before the admittal of a recession). The next was the Indian River Craft show a few weeks ago, that although made $220 in sales, was not really worth the 2 days of time, and effort, and $100 booth fee.
This show earned me $48 in sales, and costs $30 to enter into. Considering all the factors above not too bad. I would expect a 50-100% lift at our next event, just due to the experience, lessons learned, return customers, and hopefully a more optimistic economy.
I found most of my sales (like Indian River) veered towards the tarts and tealights that are $1. These are not my best sellers on Etsy, likely because it is so inexepensive, that the shipping overwhelms the sale.
Regardless of any money made, I finished my Christmas shopping, buying a wonderful blanket from Gappy Girl, for my niece (previously purchased a purse and belt for my daughter for Christmas). I also got some Jelly, from the Jelly maker. In addition, got some wonderful items (picture frame and thank you notes) from my friend at The Second Pea, who has not yet opened her Etsy shop, but it is to come!
I also really truly had a good time talking and being with other crafters and teammates. It was really fun, and felt so comfortable to be in a smaller venue with team mates. We are already brainstorming the next show in Spring. I am already excited!
To keep up to date with our team, and to see the members, please visit us at


Homemade Zen said...

I'm glad that you had a good time in the craft fair!

MayRae said...

Sounds like a fun little fair to be a part of. Good luck with the next one as well!