Monday, October 29, 2012

Craft Show Basics

I love craft shows! There are so many fabulous things that people make and always way too many things I want to buy. However, I won't get a lot of time to shop since I'll be having a table at Rosemount High School on November 3. If you're in the area, stop by between 9 am and 4 pm. They're going to have about 90 vendors and there are some very talented crafters there.

Then on November 10 I'll have a table at Eagan High School and on November 17 at Faithful Shepherd Catholic School in Eagan. Please stop by!

For those of you who participate in craft shows, I wish you great shows. I've been busy getting all my stuff together and hopefully I won't forget anything. Here's a brief list of things to take with you:
change--plenty of one's and five's
a cash box
blank price tags (in case something comes off during transit and set up)
cell phone
water bottle
money to purchase food or drink at the show if needed/wanted
table covering
mannequins, jewelry stands, shelves, racks, etc needed for displaying your items
your tax id number (many shows ask you to fill out a form at the show with your
tax id #)
business cards

These are pretty much the basics. I hate hauling a bunch of stuff around, so I try to keep it to a minimum. If I didn't have to load up the car, unload the car, and set things up--craft shows would be perfect. But other than the heavy lifting, craft shows are a lot of fun. Get to know your neighbors--the vendors on each side of you, behind you and across from you. They're great people and you can learn a lot from them. Talk with the shoppers. They're great people too. Even if you're shy--just make yourself talk to people. Pretty soon you'll feel right at home. (I must admit it took me a couple of seasons before I got over my shyness and felt really comfortable.)

Here are a few of the things I'll have in my booth. I'm looking forward to seeing all the great things at shows this next month!

Early Bird Shopping Lists

I joined a blog hop at Check out her blog for some great items from some great sellers. If I knew how to post the linky link correctly, I believe I could make the list of all the items and pictures show up on my blog; but, alas, my technical skills are not that great.  So I urge you to click on the link which will take you to photos of all the great items.

Sunday, October 7, 2012

Cranfest and Ruffle Yarn

I had to share a fun travel experience we had last weekend.  We went to Cranfest in Warrens, WI. ( What is Cranfest you ask?  Well, it's the biggest craft show/flea market I've ever seen.  They say they have over 1250 booths and over 3miles of booth frontage and I believe them.  I've never seen so many vendors in one place.  And I don't think I've ever seen that many people in one place.  Think Minnesota State Fair but way bigger.  People were there from all over and some we talked to go year after year.

Even though it was crowded, we had a nice time.  It was the perfect day for it--temps in the 70s and beautiful fall colors.  There were tons of craft booths with all kinds of crafts.  Then there were flea market type booths.  There were lots of booths selling food items--cranberry cheese, cranberry sausage, cranberry jelly beans, sauce mixes, etc.  Then, of course, there were plenty of vendors selling you food to eat.  The festival lasts 3 days and on Sunday they have a big parade.  You can also go see a cranberry bog--something I'd never seen before.  We stayed in Tomah, WI overnight and rode their shuttle bus to the festival.  I highly recommend that because it avoids a lot of parking and traffic hassles.  I also recommend taking a collapsible shopping cart if you like to buy things.  Carrying stuff around gets really tiresome.

The drive back home was lovely.  There were some very pretty leaves to see and pretty countryside.  It was a perfect fall weekend getaway.

My son thinks I should have a booth there.  It's a tempting thought because there would certainly be a lot of potential customers.  But 3 days outdoors is a big commitment.  But I'll think about it.

All those craft vendors got me in the mood to get busy on my own work.  Since October is breast cancer awareness month, I'm working on some pink ruffle scarves.  Awhile back I did a post on working with Red Heart's Sashay yarn.   I mentioned that separating it and wrapping it around cardboard helped in making it easier to work with.  I've discovered the same thing applies to a couple of new yarns I've tried--Michael's Flaunt yarn and Bernat's Ruffle.  These yarns are a little different from Sashay in that they're not a mesh but actual little ruffles.  They do have the space along one edge though which is where you knit into.  I discovered that you really do need to smooth these yarns out first and wrap them around something or they're pretty hard to work with.  So far, I really like Michael's Flaunt yarn.  They have some nice colors and the quality is good.  The price is good too.  I'm really disappointed with Bernat's version.  The one skein I've used was broken and then knotted in 3 different places and there were a couple of other places where it was frayed.  I expected better from such a major yarn maker.  I'm including a picture of the scarf I made with Michael's Flaunt.  With this one I did 15 stitches and it took 3 skeins.  I think the next one I'll reduce the number of stitches to 9 and it should only take 2 skeins.  I used Size 4 needles.