Crafting a Showstopper

Hey there, crafty people! It may be the beginning of April, but it's already time to prepare for the looming craft show season. Need a hand? Our helpful guide will give you everything you need to know, from getting in to setting up to selling.


Your first order of business is to apply for some shows! Research events in your area and see if there is anything that fits your vibe. Make sure you look into community festivals, antique markets, and art gallery events as well as craft fairs, and make sure you meet the show's requirements before you apply.

Download and read all of the application materials, and then make sure you fill out and send everything before the deadline. Keep in mind that juried shows are tougher to get into and will have an early deadline, so pay attention!

Meg Favreau will walk you through the research and application process.

The Display

Ok, you're in! Now what? Now you take the time until the show to prepare inventory and put together a creative, eye-catching display.

Your display should be an accurate reflection of you and your product, so do a little thinking: Does your company have a theme? Do you incorporate specific colors? What's the look and feel of your products, and what colors or display pieces would really make your items pop? Don't forget a sign or banner so shoppers can immediately know who you are!

My friend Kim is a master of show displays. She makes jewelry from recycled objects and old game pieces, so her display includes old shutters, painted metal trellises, vintage vases and lava lamps, and game boards. Her displays draw people in and show off her products spectacularly.

Want some ideas for your own space? Check out Polly Danger's traveling booth display tips and indie fixx's 14 craft show display 'do's and get those creative juices flowing.


Once you are at the show, don't forget to be friendly to your potential customers as well as your fellow makers. Your experience at the show largely depends on your own attitude and actions!

Nick Mohler from the PA Guild of Craftsmen has had a lot of experience with good and bad shows, and offers some great tips on what to do and what not to do at a craft fair.

Want More?


Not into the craft fair scene? Check out these tips for selling in alternative venues, from concerts to sidewalks.

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