I’ve taken a couple of weeks off from doing craft shows because of the Thanksgiving Holiday (and having to recover from Black Friday shopping, lol!) and I also came down with my yearly dose of bronchitis. So I needed a little rest from craft shows for a couple weeks, even though I really love doing them!
Today I did a craft show in Henrietta, NY. It was the their 9th Annual Santa’s Workshop at St. Marianne Cope on East Henrietta Road, and it was to benefit the RHYM (Rush Henrietta Youth Ministries). I had heard good things about this show so I decided to give it a go. The booth fee was very reasonable (a 14’x7′ space for just $38), and it was in a high traffic area.
I usually set up my booth in a “U” shape with three tables, where people walk around the outside of my booth. But when I emailed to verify my space size and setup (because of what happened in Brockport), I was promptly told I could not do a “U” shaped booth. I was told I could not set up like that. Which I thought was odd, because if I’m paying for a space I should be able to set up my booth whatever way I want. But I decided to just use two 6′ tables straight across. I’ve never set up this way so was interested to see how this would work out.
We got there at 7am to set up and we were promptly greeted with helping hands. They were so very nice and helped us unload our vehicle, showed us to our booth spot and even helped us set up our tables. They were a huge help and for that we were very thankful! Throughout the day, we were asked if we wanted anything for breakfast, lunch, snacks and beverages. They took orders from all the vendors and quickly delivered to us as well. When it was time to break down, more helping hands came around asking if we needed any help loading our vehicles, and picked up any trash we had. We’ve been to other shows where we were told there would be “helpers” but never saw them. I have to say, this show excelled in this category. Thank you so much to all of the helpers! It was organized very well.
So here was what my booth looked like when it was set up. I actually liked the two tables straight across.
I do have to say, I was expecting much more traffic. And I was told there were only about 23 vendors, and there were a lot of empty spots. There were names on some spots, so it appeared that some vendors just did not show up. We did the show at Holy Childhood in Henrietta last month and it was great, and had lots of traffic. The traffic in this show was just not there. It seemed that for most of the day, the only traffic was other vendors walking around.
Shortly after it opened at 9am, there was a little rush of customers, and then for hours it was dead. The only good thing about this is that we had time to chat with our fellow vendors, and once again, we met some incredibly nice people!
The very nice lady in the booth next to me, Gail, was selling these really gorgeous wine bottles that light up and they are decorated so pretty on the outside. She had all colors of wine bottles and she does special orders by request. This is what her booth looked like:
Another really nice vendor across from us, John, had a gorgeous booth (wish I had taken a pic) and he had all wood products. I believe everything in his booth was under $20. He had some really nice exotic wood pens that I was checking out, but that was just a small portion of all his wood products. Lots of keepsake stuff for kids, as well as adults.
And I met another really nice vendor who was actually selling soy candles! Her name was Debby and her candles were amazing. They weren’t just jar candles like mine, hers were in all sorts of shapes (like pies, cakes, etc) and they were completely adorable. She actually has an Etsy shop and you can check out her stuff here: https://www.etsy.com/shop/MaarvelousCreations Her stuff looks good enough to eat, and they smell good enough to eat, too!
What’s weird about this show, is that in the last hour of the show, there one was last rush of customers and we made more in the last hour than we made the rest of the day! We didn’t do great at this show, but it did end up being worth the trip.
Would I do this specific show again? Probably not. The show itself seemed to be organized really well, but I don’t think they advertised enough. There were a lot of craft shows in the area today and I think shoppers were going to the bigger shows that advertised heavily and had a lot more vendors. Would you be more likely to go to a craft show that advertised that there would be 70+ vendors, or one that had just 23 or so? Plus, I haven’t done many shows in the Rochester area and there are so many every year, I’d like to try some others and see which ones suit my products best.
I like to think that I learn something new from every show. One of the many lessons I learned from today’s show was “specifically request a booth that is NOT in a corner”. When you are in a corner, people tend to cut your booth off and walk right by. And the funny part about that, is that I have noticed that a lot of shows charge extra for corner spaces! Trust me, corners are bad. Live and learn.
So anyways, here are some more pictures of my booth and the room we were in. If you were a vendor or shopper at this show, I welcome your comments below! Let me know how you did or what you thought about this show!