Posts Tagged: business tips

biz tip :: craft fair applications


As makers, a part of our income comes from craft fairs and to do that, you will need to put together a top notch application to shine above the rest and show us why you are Got Craft? (or any event) material!

tip one: Submit a well rounded application with better photography

“The first thing I look at when reviewing applications are the images. If they don’t catch my eye, I’m hesitant to read the rest of the application no matter how good it may be.”

Got Craft? requests that you submit 3 images that best represent your handmade products.  Take a few moments to clean up your photos, invest in a professional photographer to shoot your work, or take a photography class. You don’t need a fancy camera or mad photography skills, but make sure you show your work properly.

  • Find a spot with natural light and play around with it to avoid shadows. No flash please!
  • A little styling will go along way, but too much will distract away from your products. Be aware of your background and remove any clutter.
  • Avoid using the camera on your phone and editing them with a filter.
  • Show your range of products by creating a collage.
  • Make sure your photos are low res unless otherwise requested.
  • Don’t have photoshop? I use PicMonkey, a free online photo editing website.

tip two: Check it twice!

We are all guilty of a misplaced word, but do your best to proof read your application before hitting submit! Make sure you answer the question asked. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve received a question in the “Please describe your product here. If accepted, this description will be used on the website”. Have you participated at Got Craft before? Tell us what new items you are working on!

tip three: Update your website and online links.

“It’s always disappointing when people submit a dead link or a link to a blog that hasn’t been updated since 2009”.

We don’t expect you to be a social media queen or king, but if you submit a link to your etsy shop, please make sure that your shop has at least a few products listed! If you don’t blog anymore, just let us know. Love facebook and twitter!? Share your updates with us! Your online presence shows us how active you are and in turn, how much you will help spread the word.


Online applications to the Got Craft? 2013 Spring Edition on Saturday, April 27th and Sunday, April 28th at the Maritime Labour Centre are now open. Click here for details!

image via sassy contessa

soa session :: craft fair applications pt1

photo by the seventy tree | Hazel Stark

Robert and I presented a session about craft fair applications along with Rachel at SOA last week in Baltimore and here are our long awaited notes from the workshop! note: these are speaking notes, so most of it will be in bullet form

Learn how to prepare a craft fair application to help your company stand out from the crowd including choosing the right fair for you, what juries are looking for and how to handle rejection.

topic: photos
For Got Craft?, we request three images as part of your application that best represent your products. I can not stress how important these three photos are, yet, I often receive blurry images with distracting backgrounds that often have me scrolling back to the description to double check what exactly I should be looking at. I have a short attention span and most likely, if your first picture doesn’t make an impression, I may not take the time to read your description and visit the additional links you posted. I know that it may sound harsh, but if there are two vendors that make similar items and one has clear, bright photos of their product versus somebody that took a few quick photos from their phone, you can easily guess who we are going to go with.

no –
  • blurry, dark and using flash
  • distracting backgrounds (no dust balls please!)
  • too many props
  • thumbnails (make sure your items are properly sized!)
  • large files (Grrrrrr – nobody wants to wait for an 8MB photo)
  • wrinkly linens
good –
  • clear, clean and simple photos
  • appropriately sized (check application for details as they may vary)
  • if you sell many different items, try a photo collage
  • styling can be your friend – see Just Noey
  • properly lit (use natural light whenever possible)
  • have a fancy table display? include a picture of it
helpful websites:
pugly pixel – love this site! great resource for photos in general, but she has some fab photo templates + picnik – free resources to retouch and resize photos

stay tuned for part two!

biz notes :: marketing

The Rice Babies | photo by Studio Jeanie

I’m not usually somebody that spouts off business notes, but as I was typing out my marketing email to send out to Got Craft? vendors this afternoon, I thought that this may be something that others may be interested in.

As part of our Got Craft? marketing campaign, we rely heavily on our vendors. In my opinion, this show is as much theirs as it is ours and to make it a success, it truly does take a village. Since spending more of the past seven months living in London, UK, I can’t even begin to explain how thankful I am to the people that are helping us with the Vancouver event (K, I, B, M, C, to name a few!). Although, not a requirement, when confirming vendors we do consider your online presence and how well you market yourselves, or if you are a past participant, how well you helped us spread the word. Most likely, if you don’t use social media or have an active blog / website, you won’t help market our show. *

Here are some ways that I  encourage people to talk about the event:

  • Post the event on your website
  • Talk about the event on your blog (some ideas: talk about the swag you are making, talk about the products you are creating, sneak peek some photos of your table display, etc.)
  • Post the event under your shop announcement in your Etsy shop listing to where they can find you this holiday season.
  • Twitter
  • Facebook
  • Mailing list
  • Newsletter
  • Post the event details on the forums you visit
  • Pitch the show to any media that you may know and invite them to the show
  • Tell your co-workers, friends, church, neighbours, roommates, stitch and bitch groups, your barista at the local coffee shop, your hairdresser, classmates, you get the idea!
  • Add the event details to your email signature
  • Distribute postcards at places you shop, craft supply stores, stores that sell handmade, stores that already have an area for flyers, stores that you sell your goods at, your apartment building, places you eat at, your school, with shop owners you know…
  • Have flyers displayed at your table / booth when participating in other shows leading up to the event
Have something to add to the list? We would love to hear from you!
*We do not solely base our decision on this.