Craft Fair Inspiration Kick-Off From the Jersey Shore!

In just a couple of months, I will be sitting (or more likely, standing) at my very first craft fair booth, which I will be sharing with my good friend and creator-extraordinaire, Melissa, over at Dixie West Designs. She is just starting out her blog but she’s been crafting and creating forever, and you better believe you will see amazing things from her!

SO, I am *only slightly* obsessing. I’ve been to craft fairs aplenty but I’ve never been a vendor at one and I know that so much hard work is required to make your booth a success. I am in “research” mode now, learning as much as I can about what happens before, during, and after a craft fair from a vendor’s perspective. One thing I definitely want to get RIGHT is the display of my work. I don’t just want to get it right, I want to NAIL it. I want people to do a double take as they walk by.

Where to go for my craft fair inspiration? Well, the internet, of course (and we’ll get to that), but I also happen to be at the Jersey shore right now and I needed to take a nice long walk on the Promenade in Sea Isle City in order for my summer Jersey trip to be complete.

Jersey Shore Farmers Market

First, a stop to get a smoothie – because it’s blazing hot, and I had my two little ones in tow. You would think that since I live in Texas now, I would be used to the heat, but no. One mango and one strawberry smoothie please. COLD. REFRESHING. YUM.

Baja Blend Smoothies in Sea Isle City

Okay, thirst quenched, we continued walking and what did I see? It’s farmer’s market day! The perfect place to get inspired! Folks, I did not have to go far to find my favorite vendor booth. Check this out. A lovely woman named Shelley greeted me at this booth – not too pushy, not too stand-offish – just being totally herself  (note to self for craft fair – be myself – got it).

Shelley is in the T-Shirt making business, but these are not just any old T-shirts.  You can draw on these with chalk! “Chalkboard” T-Shirts, y’all! I love this! The business name? Why, Chalk Me Up, of course! Her display was simple and to the point, yet so colorful! I loved that I could shop around inside the booth.

Chalk me up display at the Jersey Shore

Shelley let my four-year old write her name in chalk on a sample shirt and you KNOW the doodle wanted one. Of course, the doodle deliberating as to the size and color of the shirt was tedious, but Shelley was patient and friendly (note to self, be patient while customers shop and deliberate – even the four-year olds).

The Doodle settled on a blue T-shirt with a heart, and guess what! It came with a box of chalk! This is just ridiculously cute.

Chalk Me Up T-Shirt

Shelley told me that she does a birthday package for a really good “per T-shirt” deal. If your little one has a birthday coming up and you are doing a party, how awesome would this be as the “party favor” that the kids could do artwork on and take home? The T-shirts wipe clean and can be drawn on again and again. Here’s a little doodling on the doodle’s shirt for ya’:

Chalk Me Up t shirt with writing

Okay, now that I am totally amped to set up my own booth, I am scouring the internet for more craft fair inspiration and wisdom. I went straight to good old Pinterest and found some super informative articles and creative display images. Being at that Farmer’s Market today and seeing all these awesome ideas online has me buzzin’ like a cheap TV!

I created a craft fair inspiration board on my Pinterest which you are, of course, welcome to check out and follow, but here are some of my faves so far:

I love this whole post from Hand and Seek, but especially the idea to use drying racks. I’ll have a lot of items that would do well on a hanging display, and this seems like a simple and inexpensive way to do that. I also love the lighting. I don’t think I’ll have that option this time around, but it’s so pretty!

Next up, Refresh Restyle shows how to refresh a ladder to make it into cool shelving! What a great idea! I know I have a ladder somewhere…

How to reFresh a Ladder

Fabric scrap garland to spruce the place up from Lucky Star Lane!? Yes, please. You know I have tons of fabric scraps! And don’t think I didn’t notice that Kanzashi Flower (see my post about those awesome little things HERE)!

Fabric bunting at lucky star lane

And last for today, this simple clothes line display from Jennifer Rizzo would be perfect for my colorful large laundry bags!

Clothes line display

I’ll be keeping you up to date on all my craft fair research and adventures so feel free to subscribe and follow along to gather your own inspiration if craft fairs are your deal! Speaking of, do you frequent craft fairs? What are some of your favorite types of displays and crafts to check out?

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12 Comments on Craft Fair Inspiration Kick-Off From the Jersey Shore!

  1. Elizabeth
    August 4, 2015 at 11:51 PM (2 years ago)

    That is a cool shirt idea. I love that this post takes me on your adventure. I do like craft shows but haven’t been in a while. I like colorful booths that make it easy to see products. I don’t like when I have to really sift through baskets to see the different products. My kids love booths that have a little candy dish and they are invited to take one. A little peppermint makes them very happy. And I love vendors that will talk to my children, as if my kids are real people. My boy had a lovely time learning about a pressing machine at a quilt show a couple of weeks back. He asked politely how it worked and she was patient and thorough with him. Made us both very happy. If I was in the market for what she was selling, you bet I would have seriously considered her. :)

  2. Amanda
    August 15, 2015 at 7:45 AM (2 years ago)

    I don’t do craft fairs because I’d be a fish out of water, but if you ever came to my area, I’d drop everything to come see your display! Love reading your work. :) Always a pleasure seeing it at the #homemattersparty.

  3. Michelle James
    August 15, 2015 at 7:47 AM (2 years ago)

    I love that you are going to have a craft booth and that you are doing some research first. We don’t have a lot of craft fairs in Iowa. I think if I didn’t have a full time job I would love to create and sell at craft fairs. I am liking the ideas you are showing and I think yours will be amazing! I can’t wait to see it all set up and ready to sell!

  4. Jane @SustainMyCraftHabit
    August 15, 2015 at 11:37 AM (2 years ago)

    I’v never even though about the art of a good craft fair display! You’re right, it needs planning and creativity to be inviting and stand out. I’m sure your display will be spectacular.

    We’re enjoying all your posts at the #HomeMattersParty!
    Jane @SustainMyCraftHabit recently posted…Friday Five: New Purposes for Old Picture FramesMy Profile

    • notimefordiy
      August 18, 2015 at 9:27 AM (2 years ago)

      Isn’t that one great? I don’t know if I will able to use it this time around but if the craft fair thing works out and I want to do them regularly, that display or something like it is definitely happening!

  5. Shann Eva
    August 16, 2015 at 8:48 PM (2 years ago)

    Such great inspiration. I’m sure your craft fair display will look amazing. Great to be co-hosting with you again for the #HomeMattersParty :)
    Shann Eva recently posted…Sneek Peek SundayMy Profile

    • notimefordiy
      August 18, 2015 at 9:28 AM (2 years ago)

      Thank you! I sure hope it turns out well! Thanks for visiting and commenting. It’s great to be co-hosting the party with you!

  6. Sarena @ Teal Inspiration
    August 17, 2015 at 1:13 PM (2 years ago)

    What fun T-shirts! The craft fair inspiration ideas are great. Good luck with your own craft fair adventure! Great to be co-hosting the #HomeMattersParty with you again!
    Sarena @ Teal Inspiration recently posted…Home Matters Linky Party #50My Profile

    • notimefordiy
      August 18, 2015 at 9:30 AM (2 years ago)

      Thank you, Sarena! Even if it doesn’t work out to be profitable enough to do many of them, I still plan to have fun! Great co-hosting with you!

  7. Alayna @AlaynasCreations
    August 17, 2015 at 3:15 PM (2 years ago)

    Looks like you’re on the right track. I did a couple of craft fairs and decided it wasn’t my thing. Those booths seem pretty small once you start putting things in them, so add height wherever possible. And be sure to put something really cute/attention getting near the outside corners so that people notice them and want to want in to explore further. Good luck!

    I’m having fun co-hosting the #HomeMattersParty with you this month!

    • notimefordiy
      August 18, 2015 at 9:31 AM (2 years ago)

      Thanks for the tips, Alayna! I hope it becomes part of “my thing” but even if not, I’m sure it will be an adventure and I’ll have had fun and gotten to spend time with a friend, so it’s already worth it!


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