Yep. IF you’ve got yourself a little craft business, and participate in craft shows as the key way to reach your markets and sell your craft products, then right now is the time to start preparing.
You may need to apply up to half a year in advance for major Christmas craft shows. Plus, in order to have enough handmade merchandise to sell, most of us must start begin July to begin productions. And at least create samples of new designs to use in our show applications.
Many craft boutiques / artisans use July to be creative, and decide on this year’s designs. The next step is to buy craft supplies to make many of these. And what happens to be a nice coincidence, is that summer time is often a great time to get craft supply deals. ‘Summer Sales’ ~ I love them. (as are btw. the September ‘back to school’ coupons and discounts to stock up some more….).
Usually, when you have come pu with some lovely designs in July, you will want to be productive in August, and make many variations on a theme. Chances are, after making 3 or 4 or 10, you don’t like your initial creation any longer and figure out something new and better, that is kind of like it, but improved all over. And then, as I said, in September there are these lovely Back-to-School supplies sales on and you can find yourself a nice new batch of craft supplies for a nice price. I like to have the packaging ideas also completely resolved by that time so that there is really ample time to order packaging materials, make them crafty and unique, and … be able to take advantage of some earlier shows.
There may be some local craft shows in Summer and Fall which you might like to participate in, as a trial. Provided of course that you make things that do not say ‘Winter’, because it is hard to sell handmade thick woolen socks in the heat of the summer, obviously.
Anyhow, back to preparing for Christmas Art Shows / Winter Craft Fairs: no matter what anyone who is not in the business might think, the summer is the ideal time to prepare for it.
As well, if you have a website or catalog to support your winter artfair participation, then making good photos of your work and getting the web page layouts ready, you will have time for that in September – October.
How to Organize your Craft Shows
Trust me, and I say this from experience along with a whole host of other artisans who have participated in Christmas craft shows, creating your designs, craft wares, packaging and promotion materials at the last minute is asking for disaster and cost unnecessary stress. And stress is sure to take ALL the fun out of you, so that you might as well have worked for someone else at a boring job and earn a pension while you’re at it.
In contrast, when you’re all prepared early, you can do some last minute finishing touches with a delightful ease and you’ll be so pleasant to deal with at the art show (cause you slept) that you will make all the sales. And so it must be.