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First show!


itsmejeffd
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That looks really nice! I agree, I love how it is not overwhelming with thousands of candles, but has just a big enough selection.

I wanted to mention... Something that tends to go over well is keeping a little bin of tealights under the counter and offer them with a card or even small candle scent list to anybody who has any interest in a candle. Alot of people are scared to buy homemade candles(especially because they can be a bit more spendy than a cheap walmart 50cent one), so showing that step of confidence by offering them one will give them a chance to love it and then they will be ready to place an order and tell everyone "This really nice couple gave me this cute candle to try out and it is just absolutely amazing, let me find their card because you just have to try them out for yourself".

I am amazed at how many orders I get just from people LOVING the sample tealights I offer. Its great because tealights are SO easy to make, and have just enough wax for people to get a good feel for the candle.

Sorry for the rambling, haha, again, I love the set up!

Victoria

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That looks really nice! I agree, I love how it is not overwhelming with thousands of candles, but has just a big enough selection.

I wanted to mention... Something that tends to go over well is keeping a little bin of tealights under the counter and offer them with a card or even small candle scent list to anybody who has any interest in a candle. Alot of people are scared to buy homemade candles(especially because they can be a bit more spendy than a cheap walmart 50cent one), so showing that step of confidence by offering them one will give them a chance to love it and then they will be ready to place an order and tell everyone "This really nice couple gave me this cute candle to try out and it is just absolutely amazing, let me find their card because you just have to try them out for yourself".

I am amazed at how many orders I get just from people LOVING the sample tealights I offer. Its great because tealights are SO easy to make, and have just enough wax for people to get a good feel for the candle.

Sorry for the rambling, haha, again, I love the set up!

Victoria

Good idea with the tealights. I don't make them yet and probably can't with my wax (comfort blend). I do, however, have printouts of my scents with full descriptions of each. That's what's on the table in front of the credit card signs.

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Love the displays, but if I were to walk up to your booth and only see a few candles I would have to wonder if you just "dabble" with candles. Yes it looks nice, yes its not cluttered, would I buy from you if thats all i saw.... probably not. Bruce

I never thought of it that way, Bruce. This is a display of all our scents. We have many boxes under the table full of the candles that we sell. We've been doing this since October and have 24 scents. We're slowly adding more scents but we're taking our sweet time to develop and test each one extensively. BTW, loved your afro in 1975! :rockon:

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I never thought of it that way, Bruce. This is a display of all our scents. We have many boxes under the table full of the candles that we sell. We've been doing this since October and have 24 scents. We're slowly adding more scents but we're taking our sweet time to develop and test each one extensively. BTW, loved your afro in 1975! :rockon:

I agree with Bruce.. if I walked by and saw just one table (which was set up VERY nice BTW) I would keep walking.. under the assumption you just dabble in candle making. If you have bunches more candles under the table... for goodness sake put them out!!! Get another display table/shelf to put some of your stock on.. then you capture their attention.. now they know you are serious candle makers... and there to sell. Your current set up reminds me more of a wholesale booth set up.. than a retail. ( and trust me... I go to alot of wholesale shows) Honestly I would glance, admire the set up.. and keep going.

As well as being candle makers - I also have a retail store - so another thing I would suggest to consider is the "comfort factor" of your customers. They have to walk straight up to you and face you while they check out your product with the way you have it now. This alone is enough to keep the shy/timid/non social group from coming in to take a peek... and thats a good amount of customers these days.. people want to be able to shop with some privacy... until they decide they are ready to socialize. So by adding a table/shelf on the side of what you have.. now they can smell.. don't have to face you yet... but you are still close enough for you to keep an eye on your product, answer any questions... etc.

I think you are on track.. very professional presentation! Hope I didn't offend you guys.. just seeing great potential and wanted to share.

Take care,

Chele

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Those displays are great! Very nice looking. I agree with the comment it looks like a wholesale display (which isn't a bad thing, just not as effective for a fair setting), I might have walked on by as well since with a quick look I wouldn't have been able to tell if you were selling candles or selling something else (like joining a party system or something).

I really do like those shelves - well balanced and a perfect size for those jars - I can tell they were custom made which would give me a good first impression.

Break out the tools again and make some more of those displays - put a whole set across 2 tables, with stuff in front of them - make it look like solid shelving with 2-3 of the same scent - that would draw me in..

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I really love your displays! I could use some of those...Hmm now I have to talk to my dad...lol

And I love your shirts! That's a great professional look....

I agree about having more on your table at a craft fair, I would stop and look, but there isnt much and my stop would be short (i'm one who looks at everything). Definitely put lots more on the table for people to look at...

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These are all great ideas. Absolutely no offense is taken on any of your comments. I welcome constructive criticism. It only helps to make a better product & presentation. I've always appreciated the helpful advice of everyone from the seasoned professionals to the newbies on this board. Please keep it coming.

Our initial idea was to keep it simple so as to not overwhelm the customer. We took the advice from a friend to put the table at the front of the tent because many people would feel intimidated if they had to walk into it. I will definitely look into getting another table and making more displays when money permits. I hadn't thought about putting more than one of each scent on display.

Chele, are you suggesting adding another table to make an "L" shape or put them parallel to eachother?

Again, thank you everyone!

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Guest EMercier

I love the way everything looks, it's not cluttered. I got that compliment on my show this past weekend. My problem I had was that people would see one of everything and think that's all I had. I then went to the shelves (the ones I posted the other day) and put everything that I had out. That way people were able to get what they wanted. I had a few extras ad put it up like a store shelf. I got a much better response than I ever have.

I love the shirts as well. I just didn't have the time to get one made, but I think I can do a little something for my next show to look better. I've been wanting to learn how to silk screen.

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Chele, are you suggesting adding another table to make an "L" shape or put them parallel to eachother?

Again, thank you everyone!

Back in my craft show days.. we had great success with the "L" or "U" shaped layout. I think you could get by just fine with an "L". Your work space is behind the back table.. similar to what you are doing now.. just pull it farther back in the booth and add a table.

I disagree with the put the table in the front because people won't come in.. theory... if your booth is appealing.. they WILL come on in! I had the best success when I created my booth/tent like it was my own little store. Be sure to get a list of rules for your show... if they didn't say I couldn't.. I assumed I could. :) I set up my tent even at indoor shows.. I think you can set the mood of your space better if you control the boundaries. I even put out a big rug or floor mats when the space permitted. Needless to say I did much better at crafts shows that lots of my neighbor - vendors. If you are allowed to burn a candle... do it.. if not make a linen spray with one of your best FO's and spray the air when your booth is empty... smell will draw them in. Bring a boom box (and batteries if no electricity) .. and play a cd of oldies tunes (like 50-60's.. is what we've had the best success with) ... set the mood... they will come :) (Be sure the music is light hearted.. not too fast.. not too loud... this makes the customer relax.. and SHOP SHOP SHOP)

I did the big craft shows (juried shows) for years.. lots of fun.. but very tiring. I would literally sell thousands of dollars of merchandise in one weekend.. it can be done. Good luck :)

Take care,

Chele

PS. One neat thing we did was make folding lattice "screens" .. I would set them up behind our tables and back of the booth (to create "walls") .. you can get "S" hooks from the hardware store and hang things on them.. in your case thats where I'd put my signage... and perhaps a sign/banner with your name & logo.

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I shared a booth with a soaper friend of mine once and we made a "U" shaped booth, it worked out really well...

Sometimes we coordinate candles and soaps and so in the middle we put the "matching sets" and on the sides we put the rest of our items. I wish I had a picture....It looked really nice!

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Guest EMercier
PS. One neat thing we did was make folding lattice "screens" .. I would set them up behind our tables and back of the booth (to create "walls") .. you can get "S" hooks from the hardware store and hang things on them.. in your case thats where I'd put my signage... and perhaps a sign/banner with your name & logo.

This is a good idea and wanted to do this, but didn't know of another material to use for this. Thanks for posting that!

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Jeff,

I feel that if you group your scents into two clusters, like the way you have them on your display stands, you limit the space that people have to check out your candles. Am I making sense? If you have them spread out on the table, people can check out the candles from the left, right or center. If you arrange them in neat rows, I don't think they would look cluttered. Or maybe you could make some tiered stands?

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I'm always a bit behind but eventually show up :) I agree with almost everything said.... you have a great product presentation but not enough of it out....but I don't mean in the scent category. There is such a thing as having too many scents. For craft shows I would limit the number of scents to take...people get confused when you offer too many and they usually want to move on to take in more of the show. Get 'em in, get 'em to buy and move 'em on...that's my motto :) 24 scents is a lot to take, IMO. People usually want to sniff the candle to see how it smells. You might want to have smaller jars for people to smell set out in front with a sign that says "smell me" or something.

I have been doing craft shows for more years than you are old, most likely LOL. I own my own shop and now do one juried show a year. I have found that people do not want to walk into a booth or tent...unless a tent is the only option. What has worked best for me is to set my tables up at the front of the space, leaving enough room for people to come up to the table and still have enough room for people to walk by. Most people will not stop if your space is 2 or 3 people deep but they will probably come back to see what the attraction is.

I do not know of a single show that will allow you to burn a candle. These are fire marshall regulations.....that doesn't mean people won't do it but I advise against it. If you have electricity, take an electric melter.

My best advice is to try something different at your next show and see what happens....then try something else the next time. After several shows you will know what will work best, not only for you, but also for your customer base. We can give suggestions and tell you what works best for us, but it all comes down to what is best for you and your area.

Also, I only noticed one size of candle.....I would also suggest you do an 8oz size or even a 4oz size that you can price really well. A lot of people won't take a chance on a larger sized candle, but once they buy and burn one of yours (because they are wonderful, right?) they will come back and buy more and the larger sizes. It's all marketing strategy and you have to find yours. Wishing you great success.

Francie

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