The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #105488   Message #2171705
Posted By: Bee-dubya-ell
15-Oct-07 - 02:00 PM
Thread Name: BS: Craft stalls at festivals
Subject: RE: BS: Craft stalls at festivals
I recommend against trying to sell arts & crafts at music festivals unless you've attended the festival yourself and have seen decent sales activity in the arts & crafts area, or you've spoken with someone who has done well at a particular festival.

My wife and I make our livings selling at festivals, mostly of the art/craft variety, not music festivals. We've tried a few music festivals and generally wished we'd stayed home. If the main draw is anything other than the art/crafts being exhibited, the attendees aren't coming to the show with buying coffee mugs foremost in their minds.

The one exception to our "No music festivals" rule is The Florida Folk Festival, at which we do exhibit every year. We generally sell about half of what we'd sell at a similarly attended art festival of the same three-day length, but if we weren't participating as crafters we'd be taking the weekend off and attending the festival anyway. Participating as crafters gets us free admission and camping and we do wind up with some profit. It's sort of a "working vacation".

We've also considered participating in a couple of other big music festivals, The Philadelphia Folk Festival and The Walnut Valley Festival (Winfield, KS). In bth cases, we've met other artists who've exhibited at them and done well.

If you're just starting out selling craft items, church festivals are a good way to get your feet wet. Their booth fees are usually quite reasonable and a festival at a good-sized church is almost guaranteed good attendance.