Thank goodness we don’t sell origami! This was the thought that kept swirling around my head all morning this past Thursday during out final day of craft fair selling. We had set up a booth on Telegraph Avenue in Berkeley, and what a prime location! Shops everywhere, people all over the place, pocket bulging with money just waiting to be spent. The only problem?
We were experiencing what it might feel like to be part of a small hurricane. The flier said, selling during “rain or shine”. Ok, rain, we got rain, WIND now, WIND was Not mentioned. Not just small gusts that make you cold, oh no, I’m talking about winds that were picking up peoples’ tables and throwing them across the street, spreading their merchandize everywhere. It was very scary to watch people as their tables were lifted up and thrown, we heard numerous crashes from people who sold such items as glass, ceramics or even one table who sold giant metal statues. After about three hours of attempting to sell our crafts, we gave up, just as the table down the way upended glass bobbles all over the place, creating a horrible crash. Some times the price of selling just isn’t worth waiting it out.
Here are some tips if you plan to sell in a big city which might have wind:
1. A tent seems like a good idea, it keeps out the rain, but make sure you have blocks weighting it down or it will be picked up by the wind. One seller had a bike hook in the middle of their tent and held on to it, immobilizing their tent. Great idea.
2. Either have very heavy tables or make sure you have blocks to it down.
3. Its best to have weighty products, the seller who outlasted everyone? He sold candles, his table was going nowhere.
4. Even the heaviest items can be blown away, if you have a table cloth under them. The people selling metal statues had a very billowy table cloth on their table and the wind picked it up and sent their statues flying. Make sure if you want to decorate to tape down all edges of the cloth.
5. Try not to have banner, loose cards, paper bags or light weight signs on your table, these items will find their way to the other end of the street, make no mistake!
6. Easy set up, easy break down. Nothing more unpleasant then spending time taking down each priceless glass bowl, when the wend is picking up. Make sure you have a way to get you products to safety in a quick manner. I placed my items under our table in boxes with lids.
7. If you sell an item made from glass or ceramics, DO NOT WAIT to pack up. Don’t try to out wait the wind, it is stronger then your products. The second you feel things getting active, begin to pack up. Sure it sucks to not make any money, but better to only eat the vendors fee and not risk your merchandize.
8. Bring sunglasses, goggles, or any protective eye wear. Sure I looked a little funny with my cosplay steampunk goggles on but, I was able to protect my eyes from flying debris.
Good luck for all you crafters out there!