Remember those crap…. I mean craft shows that I talked about last blog? Boy, have I learned that just because crafts aren’t my thing (probably because I am not talented enough to make anything), boy oh boy, do crafters have amazing talents! If you have any type of artistic ability, use it! Whether you have mastered the perfect cheesecake or taken those old wooden pallets and added your own artistic expression to it, there is probably a venue for you to sell, sell, sell every.single.weekend!
I told you before that I don’t make crafts but I sell $5 jewelry (paparazziaccessories.com) and I have been invited to a vendor/craft show every weekend the month of November and December. If I was really ambitious, I would certainly do it but honestly, I don’t want to be away from my family on the weekends. I picked 2 of the “big” ones and padded my pockets with enough cash to buy ALL my Christmas gifts (Vikings tickets are not cheap!)
You have no talent? What? Not true! EVERYONE can sell something! I’ll tell you some of the things I have seen at the vendor/craft shows I have been at.
There are beaded spoons, scarves, candy grams, oils, soaps, handmade headbands/hairclips, finger knitting, homemade salsa/sauces, baked goods, dog beds, dog treats. That is just icing on the cake (hey, I bet if you knew how to make icing for cakes, you can sell that!!). My mom just bought a vase filled with sand with a styrofoam circle attached with a bunch of lollipops stuck to it. Could she have made it herself? Of course! But someone made it FOR her and her boss that loves sweet treats will think it is an awesome gift! I know someone who asks people for their cards and she cuts off the front cover (you know…the side that NO ONE EVER WRITES ON) and adds them to other cards and charges $3-4 a card! They sell like hotcakes! People LOVE recycled stuff! You name it-it probably sells at a craft show. In fact, the more “creative” or unique your items are, the better they will sell!
I also have lots of “vendor besties” and you couldn’t even imagine how many direct sales (cash and carry) there out there. I honestly couldn’t even give you an estimate! There is something FOR EVERYONE! Here are SOME of the vendors that I personally know: Scentsy, ThirtyOne bags, Younique 3D fibers, Appetite Control and Energy, Jewelry, Damsel in Defense, doTERRA-essential oils, Dove Chocolate, Jamberry Nails, Norwex, Pampered Chef, and Pink Zebra. That was literally off the top of my head.
Go to a social media site and type in “vendor” or “craft” shows and you will be directed to hundreds of small businesses! Find something that you are interested in (for me, I loved the jewelry and I always thought to myself “if I don’t end up selling it, the worse case scenario~I get to keep some awesome jewelry!”) But if it is healthy living you are interested in or cooking supplies or CHOCOLATE, look into that! Usually the start up fees are VERY cheap so you can get your toes wet. I never thought I would be a small business owner (as a full time teacher with 3 kids all in different activities, where would I find the time???) but the world of small business owning has opened up doors for me! Moral of the story, be creative and confident of your talents! You never know when an ad for $5 jewelry might open up the door for you!
Kristi Reinke, 7th and 8th grade social studies teacher in Minot, North Dakota