Monday, 28 November 2011

No longer a (craft show) virgin

I had signed up for the MakeItVancouver show not knowing anything about it except that it still had space and I hadn't missed the deadline to apply. It was also appealing because on the application form, it said that the products had to be designed and made by you and in Canada.

After many weeks of madly soaping, being dazed and confused, having hubby kick my butt figuratively but help me out literally, D-day arrived. Or I guess maybe it should be called c-day for craft?). It was a mad rush right up to the end. Loading the car was a bear, but thankfully we had dad's CR-V to use rather than trying to fit everything into our Mini.

The event is a four day event, starting on Thursday and ending on Sunday. Needless to say, Thursday was a long day, what with setup and then having to work the floor. Friday was a big success, many visitors came and bought. Saturday was equally good and by then we'd also found our groove. One of the best sales I had was a little girl, probably about 3 years old who wanted a mini chocolate frogs. Her father came back later to buy another soap and he told us this is the only time he's ever seen her hold onto anything that tight and not let go.

Another wonderful customer was a little boy about 7 years old who knew exactly what he wanted. He told his mom he was fine with her going to look at other booths and he was going to pick out what he wanted. With the help of hubby, he put together a box with the LEGO blocks and LEGO men.

Our fellow artisans were also major contributors to a very positive experience. Their upbeat and friendly attitudes made the time fly by. I also have, fingers crossed, two potential wholesale clients. So all in all, it was a very successful show. I've learned so much from this show and now I can't wait for the next one.

Diana and Lianne of Little Dreambug and Ainsley of Flirty Fortunes


  1. Oh how I loved reading this blog post! Your set up looks incredible- the boxes, the staging, it certainly was made to draw attention!

    AND I LOVE the stories of the children- so very sweet. I can see the little 3 yo holding on to the soap for dear life, and sniffing it, and sniffing it. Children are certainly one of the nicest parts of doing a show. They always know exactly what they want, and what will make some happy too!

    This was fun- seeing all your creations. I hope you've had time to catch up on some very much deserved rest. It's so draining- especially the "behind the scenes" act before the show goes. Only another soaper really can totally understand this!

    I'm sure everyone will be looking for you next year! Glad it was such a success!

  2. As you know very well Carrie, trying to find the perfect packaging to show off your product is almost like looking for a needle in a haystack.

    The kids that came to the show were a lot of fun, they totally enjoyed sniffing all the different scents and then shoving the soaps at their parents so they could smell them as well.

    Thanks for the suggestion of not making people walk into the booth, it really helped with sales. I think I was still in euphoric mode last night, but I think I'm going to sleep well tonight. You're so right about the behind the scenes part, I need some elves to do all that work for me. :)

    It was certainly a fun time and I'm thinking of signing up for their spring show now.

  3. Oh my goodness...I am SOOO excited for you! Carrie is such a darling for giving you suggestions on how to have a better show. I hope you did sleep well last night. :)

    And I hope the potential wholesale customers will work out and work out great!!!

  4. I'm coming down from the initial excitement, mostly because I'm old and can't keep up for very long. Carrie's suggestion was perfect of course.

    I guess whether or not the wholesale clients work out is up to me to get them fair pricing and get it to them in a reasonable time.

  5. Wow! You've been busy making a lot of soap! Your set up looks great! I'm glad that your experience was wonderful and that it was a success. I hope the wholesale clients work out. No doubt the clientele will grow and grow and grow as people get to know your product :)

  6. It's so hard to know how much to make, esp for a first time. I had to rely on hubby who's used to merchandising to put together my booth for me since he's had experience as a merchandiser before.

    I hope the wholesale clientele work out as well, it'd be a great way to expand without having to work shows all the time.