Saturday, May 28, 2011

It's Getting Hot In Here

Here is the time to get moving.  Winter is dead and the summer time is hear to stay( at least until the fall).  This is the time for summer festivals, events and shows.  I love doing outside shows.  The crowds are large and you get to meet other vendors from other states and other venues.  My absolute favorite is the large shows where there are at least 200 vendors.  The more the merrier I say.   Not only do you get to check out the competition, but you get to exchange ideas, information, and chit chat.   I have learned more from other vendors at these large shows than poking around on my own.  I love the way they set the stage for whatever merchandise they are selling.  Every vendor is milling around checking out prices, techniques and displays.   We are all there for one reason.  To sell, sell, and sell some more.   Meeting people, and other vendors is the bonus.

I just adore the outdoor shows. People are in a better mood, even it is real hot, they will still come by the table and chat, maybe buy a few things, maybe not.  The sun is shining and a hopefully slight breeze.  It makes for a perfect day.
Summer shows brings all walks of life. People will come out of their offices(this is street fairs) for lunch, stroll by, look, buy or browse.   Most shows are on the weekends.  The crowds of people will stop by your table and oh and ah over what you have slaved over for the past few months. It is almost like a picnic. You bring out the lawn chairs, table, tent, food, drink, umbrella and sit and wait. And the night shows are even better. Turn your light on, putting a shine on your items as you sail into the last hours of what has turned out to be a fun, relaxed and hopefully a profitable day.  I try to cram as many shows in as possible in the summer.

The outdoors shows also bring about its headaches as well.  Wind, water and the sun, just to name a few.   For me it is the wind and sun.  The wind, if any there is any,  will blow my things all over the place.  The sun, if I don't invest in a tent this year. will discolor my jewelry. 

I have come up  with ways to combat the wind.  I have made earring boards, used a fire place screen, put them in decorative bowls on the table.  You name I have done it all.   One of my best effort was to make earring holders with pieces of material and embroidery hoops.  But even those kept flying away.  I used a peg board to hold the hoops in place with S hooks, but the board kept falling down.   I use to own a tall black carrying case which was lined with black felt and cushioned.   I lost the case during a move and have not been able to find one again.  It was light weight and I could carry it everywhere.   At one show, I pinned my earring to the skirt I was using on the table.  It worked for a little while, until the skirt fell from the table and took all my other merchandise with it.  The mishaps of a vendor.  

The only way to block the sun is to use a tent.  I have brought the EZ up, the one without the flaps(it cost more and sometimes there is not enough to around the tent.).  I will then purchase 2 blue tarp and using shower hooks, make my own flaps.  To secure them to the legs of the tent, I will punch holes and tie with a rope.   A lot of my materials can be found at Dollar General and the dollar store.   I will also position my merchandise toward the back of the tent.

I prefer grass shows than concrete or ground.  It is easy on the feet, no dust to speak of and if you pick the right patch of grass, you have even ground to set up your tent. 

Other annoyances  are the blood suckers, and the army.  Some people prefer to call them ants, mosquitoes and  flies.  I call them a menace to society.   Not only will they bite you but they will nibble on your customer, driving them into the arms of another vendor.   I will usually not eat around my tent and anything sweet is washed away with water.  I always bring plenty of water with me.   To help wipe off dust, scare away some ants and to wash away the dust from your feet.   Who wants to buy something from someone with dusty feet?

Who can argue about summer shows?  They bring their own magic and mystery.  I seem to sell differently in the summer than in the winter.  Maybe it is because I sell jewelry and this a chance to show your individual style and grace with the items I make.   What ever the reason, I hope they continue forever and ever.  So come and enjoy.  You might see me there.

****** My hometown is Chi-town.   I have just posted a list of some of the Summer Events in Chicago  If you are in the are, you might want to take a look. ********

******To check out what shows I will be doing, click on the link for Shows and Events**********

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