Art Markets, Festivals, and Craft Fairs!
In the early days of selling my art part-time, I had an Etsy shop, and I would also sell at small local craft fairs. I wasn’t selling original art at the time, but mainly greeting cards and prints. Small and affordable items. I realized early on though that in-person markets were a great source of extra income! I started small and kept selling at local bazaars/holiday fairs, and after a couple of years, I was ready to make the leap to selling at 2-day art festivals. I asked a ZILLION questions (sorry, neighbor booth mates!) and learned from trial and error.
My first few craft fairs/markets were about figuring out how to display tea towels and greeting cards. Finding things in my house to make cute displays!
As I got more comfortable selling at the local markets, I applied to some 1-day art festivals that required a tent and a bigger display! This was when I realized it's ok to ask for help. I borrowed a tent from a friend with over 50 pieces to put together. I didn't know there was such a thing as a pop-up tent!
I will always be grateful to my friends and family for supporting me with these markets. I could not do this alone! Plus, they sell my work way better than I do! Lol.
Always ask your friends to come out and visit - they can help break up the day, bring you food, watch your booth - anything you need! That's what friends are for,
I love this photo of my sister Susannah - my first 2-day art festival was in her hometown, a few hours from me. I stayed the weekend at her house, and she came and helped me sell. I was nervous, definitely not as comfortable as I am now. But Susannah was awesome - she sold probably half my booth that day!
These days when I sell at 2-day Art Festivals, I have more stuff - products and displays. I still ask for help though, and luckily my boys are growing and getting nice and strong (and my mom kept her eye on things while I grabbed the car!)
Whenever I set up my booth, I give myself at least 2 hours (I usually need 3!), then tweak it throughout the day. I love doing art markets and will continue to do a couple each year. I know some artisans and makers who sell every weekend, but I soon realized that it's a very physical job - standing all day, the setup and taking down, and then being "on" energetically.
Art markets, craft fairs, art festivals, makers markets - all of these events are a great way to earn money as a little side hustle to your art hobby! And I am excited to share that I just launched my new Creative Side Hustle Course: 10 Places to Sell - from Etsy to Art Markets. In just the art market module alone, I have over 70 tips, plus checklists, set-up advice, resources, etc.
For more info - here is the link: https://www.andreagarvey.com/creative-side-hustle-10-places-to-sell