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Old 05-06-2012, 02:07 PM   #1
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Default First craft show...

Hi there,
I am having my first craft show this Dec. and I would like to know if you could give me a list of the basics one needs for their first show? Also, what kind of credit card machine does one need? Do you really need one?

Thank you.
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Old 05-06-2012, 04:14 PM   #2
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I've been doing shows for YEARS and have never used one. I have been asked, but I just tell them I'm a SAHM, not a business. I do take checks, and I've never been burned yet, so.

Make sure you have your stuff visibly priced and a calculator handy. Other than that, just the stuff you plan to sell.

Good luck!
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Old 05-06-2012, 06:06 PM   #3
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I also have never taken cards. checks and cash. maybe I would make more if they didn't see the money leave their hands?
plan out a display so you know what you might need to create layers on the table. A black table cloth, I bought twin sheets from walmart - black. Change, calculator, a pad of paper I like to keep track of what sold, I make a list of all the items and place a hash mark next to each as they sell, I also use a receipt book with carbon paper for special orders (i do name frames and I write the specifics on the receipt with customer info). see if the venue is giving you a chair. wear layers, sometimes the doors are open a lot and it gets cold, sometimes they crank the heat and all the people make it unbearably hot
I bring a foldable tv table so I have a place to write up orders, have the money, eat lunch etc. It comes in really handy.
bags - i use plastic store bags, some people think it is more prfessional to have stamped gift bags (I have done that too)
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Old 05-06-2012, 06:55 PM   #4
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There is a FREE credit card reader called Square that you plug into your phone and just swipe their card. It charges a small per transaction fee and the money goes into your designated checking account. I read somewhere earlier today about another free program that is available too but I cant remember what it is called. I use the square all the time. It is a tiny little reader that you can easily carry in your purse and taking credit cards will probably improve your sales.

https://squareup.com/square

blessings.
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Old 05-07-2012, 02:09 AM   #5
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My friend & I have done a few craft stalls lately. We take: drinks, change, paper/plastic bags, chairs, tables, tablecloths, calculator, sticky tape, blu-tac, scissors, pen, paper, bum-bags for the money, plus some containers/shelving or similar to add different heights (covered with small tablecloths). We sell magnets, so we take a magnetic whiteboard as well. Snacks or meals will save you from spending money while you're there too. I do up a list of what we have, how many and the prices, and we note the sale price and who made each item sold for when we divide the cash later. We don't take cheques or credit cards, but we operate on a pretty small scale.
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Old 05-07-2012, 03:41 AM   #6
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If you are selling cards and small items, I think you will be ok without a credit card machine. I shop at a lot of craft fairs, and for small items I always pay cash or check. If you are planning to sell higher ticket times like paintings and higher priced jewelry, those are purchases i would charge if they were expensive. I normally bring enough cash with me to these kids of events, but if I see a lovely gift I may buy it to tuck away. Most important thing- Have fun!
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Old 05-07-2012, 06:24 AM   #7
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Thank you so much ladies, this can get overwhelming as it's my first show and it's the largest one our town gets. The man said last year they had over 100,00 visitors. YIKES! It's Friday, Sat. and Sun. My art is about 5x9, 5x12 and some a tad smaller. I am going to make a list of what you all have shared.

Where do you get your bags online from?

Thank you again so much!
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Old 05-07-2012, 08:03 AM   #8
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We just get the plastic grocery bags from Sam's Club or Costco. There's a box of like 1,000. They last a long time, even through home garage sales.

Also take seat cushions, those chairs get awfully hard at the end of the day.
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Old 05-07-2012, 09:00 AM   #9
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Thank you.
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Old 06-10-2012, 01:11 PM   #10
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sprtchick, that card reader sounded like just the thing I'd need but when I went to research it unfortunately it's not available in Canada. I''m now on the hunt to see if there is anything like that here. Thanks for sharing that info.
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Old 06-10-2012, 01:26 PM   #11
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I did a little investigating and so far all I have been able to find that is available in Canada is something called Intuit GoPayment (Intuit GoPayment« Canada | iPhone Credit Card Processing) ... the only downside is that it's for IPad and IPhone only with hopes of supporting android in the future.

I'll update if I find anything for the android.

*****UPDATE*****
I found this when I was browsing and thought it was very interesting. Paypal is coming out with it's own mobile card reader. The purchaser can choose whether that want to use Paypal money or credit card. It's set to launch in the U.S first, I believe, but then will be available in Canada, Australia and Hong Kong. Take a look (there's a video at the bottom that shows how it works) >> Paypal Mobile Credit Card Reader

Ok, my job here is done.
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Old 06-10-2012, 01:49 PM   #12
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Paypal is advertising that it is launching an android reader in in Canada too.
Paypal Here

I noticed it when I logged in to Paypal the other day.
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Old 06-10-2012, 01:54 PM   #13
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Yep it is >>> The Paypal Here service is not available to everyone yet. though. Taken from the paypal website > "At this time, PayPal Here is only available to a small set of merchants. Later this year, PayPal Here will be more widely offered. Please join the wait list and we will notify you as soon as PayPal Here becomes available in Canada."

It's exciting though. There is a button you can click on to be put on the wait list so that when it's released you will be notified right away.
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Last edited by ScrappingMum; 06-10-2012 at 01:55 PM.. Reason: just because i can, lol
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Old 06-12-2012, 11:51 AM   #14
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Everyone has given great advice! An aside regarding the card readers....my friend and I do shows together and she got the Intuit one (I believe) for her Blackberry. I know it wasn't the Square. We were in a school gym (solid concrete block walls) and we had a bit of trouble connecting sometimes, so keep this in mind. It can really slow down the process of checkout when you are having trouble. Make sure to do a test transaction or something before you open to make sure you can connect.

One thing to have are business cards or your name on something....we usually make up a sheet with our info on it and put it in bags before the show starts so if anyone needs more or anything, they can contact you.

Also, bring a book to read or an ipod to listen to for the down times, if there ever are any. Inevitably, we get put right next to the most annoying person in the whole place who wants to talk your ear off about something you have no interest in! LOL

We bring snacks, drinks or lunch with us usually, although if its for a school fundraiser or something like that, a lot of times we like to support the kids so we buy lunch there. But water is one of the most important things to have with you. You wont regret bringing it!

I never used to make an inventory list but did that last year and it helped a lot! I could truly see what sold well, what didnt and I plan on making one again this year.
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