Secrets of Selling at Craft Fairs: How to Get In, Make Sales, and Grow Your Business

Lesson 13 of 39

Writing About Your Business

 

Secrets of Selling at Craft Fairs: How to Get In, Make Sales, and Grow Your Business

Lesson 13 of 39

Writing About Your Business

 

Lesson Info

Writing About Your Business

We're going to go into writing about your business okay, we have captain coming out captain if you could just tell us your name your full name and name of your business katherine hedges and my business is splendid colors I make laser cut hand color jewelry also makes souvenir boxes that I left outside and during the christmas season the steampunk laser cut christmas ornaments perfect tree toppers so welcome, katherine we're going to talk a little bit about writing we already heard that this is something that people have a hard time with is writing writing about yourself I've heard that already a few times in here but this is really your chance to celebrate our awesome this uh and if you don't feel like you can celebrate yourself this is another great time to ask for help and uh the first thing you might be you might be asked for is a business description so this communicates the who what when why when the basic stuff of your business and it should be fairly short. I love tio I don't wa...

nt to read this I want to concentrate on katherine. I want to read this whole business description but I would love to encourage you guys to check out the pf candle company I think they have a great business description on you could just google that pf candle company they're one of our former patrick fenders and I love what they did with their description, and then your product description is everything that a customer needs. It would want to know about your product, so I will pause for a second on this on this one. This is from one of our vendors maiden voyage, and they make this. This is a t shirt. Anyway, I just I love about their product description how they started out it's a telling a story, you know, they're telling this story telekinesis was at the height of a modern day popularity in the late seventies and eighties because their shirt is about mind games, you know? And then they go into the but they keep it short, it's like a one sentence story, so they're really keeping it short there, and then they go into okay here's here's the nitty gritty that you want to know about it. Here's what it's made out of here's here's, the cut here's how it feels, so they're really kind of given that. So I encourage you to look them up and kind of review their product descriptions, and I think they do a great job and it's made in voyage. Yeah, okay, I really I really want to focus on the bio this is what we have such a hard time with his writing about ourselves, but I don't know we need to learn how to embrace your awesomeness right? I mean, here are some tips I have for writing about for writing about yourself as I said, this is a chance to talk about your awesomeness and it's usually written in the first or third person that's up to you that's either I am nicole or nicole does this so it's up to you what you feel comfortable with their schools of thought that go both ways you're gonna hear me talking a lot about asking for help so trading you know there's always payment there's trade there's offering services there is cooking dinner for your friend and having them come over and saying like he told me my three best best part of qualities are like how would you describe me in one sentence and then when you're thinking about what information you want to put in there this is kind of like it's almost an exercise of how I get my juices flowing to start bio writing so all right like a list of my professional accomplishments a list of my personal accomplishments I look at an old resume you know and see like what have I done? Who am I like what's what's up with me and think about like what do I do in my free time? What what am I getting inspired by um also you want to include interest I want to include interesting stuff in there and I want to read bios that have interesting stuff in there so thinking about you know what? What is interesting and different you know about your business about you about your story what inspired you? What is surprising? You know what is going to draw people in there? And then like I said howto friends describe you and then the information to include in your bio you know, this is just the basic stuff your name what you do with the name of your business where you're from, what your what your business is about like I said, the interesting fax you know, a timeline, a history, your accomplishments, your interests, your hobbies and then this is where I get a little like writing teacher e I guess uh you want to be clear, concise and interesting you wantto sit down and set a timer say I'm gonna write my bio for five minutes ten minutes ten minutes spurt twenty minutes, whatever it is, sit down to make yourself do it, just start typing start moving that pen nobody's going to read it until you're done just keep it going and then at some point you're going to need added and prue frieda so every bit of information does not need to you need to stay in there and then another great typist to read it out loud um and don't leave out the juicy stuff you guys were creative people you want this to reflect that creativity? Another thing is if this whole like paragraph thing is totally bumming a bumming you out you can use a formula like an index so I don't know if anybody's read harper's magazine but they have harper's index in the back which is like number of times no cold drinks out of her water bottle in a day five hundred you know number of boyfriends cool hat who played guitar all you know whatever whatever it would be so you can write your bio and like kind of a creative way like that you could I mean, you guys are incredible you can even do like that little timeline drawing thing that I did you know get creative so let's talk about katherine's by all right now this is catherine hedges of splendid colors you want to give us a brief like how do how do you do about what you do? Well I'm a member tuck shop by you and I create original designs in adobe illustrator that are laser cut and of writing materials for different products and people kind of booze you know, what do you want this princess sleep? Well it's because it's all stuff from making a laser cutter so there's that thing that kind of holds it together uh we're going to read you guys all have katherine's bio thanks so we're gonna have catherine reader so go ahead whenever you're ready, george you comfortable? Really you're okay? Yeah you're comfortable katherine's a california native who create splendid colors designs based on her love of nature funds for history and appreciation of many cultures and sub cultures represented in sf bay area and pacific northwest hey dj credits her mother for encouraging her r and d I y projects will gramp in santa ana, calif as well assyrian christian science all those who plan to pursue a career in science and an art minor to a masters in biology at humboldt state university wow, my sentences are really long prepared er found spent splendid colors when she graduated during a dry spot on the job market a friend commensurate joined tech shop in san jose in twenty eleven an interest in her laser cut painted cardboard steampunk christmas ornaments you made for club project inspired her to list um on at sea christine pong quality armaments and tree toppers are still hurst top sellers on etsy both retail and wholesale have inspired larger commission such as reese she started zion laser cut acrylic jewelry in twenty twelve and created her extremely popular sugar skull. The signs in twenty thirteen inspired by they have spent in cultural icon and has crossed over apart culture in california original laser cut me tonight souvenir de que planter line because expanded from a san jose design to include san francisco italy season the signs and custom orders she makes him packages all the items in silicon valley california the occasional local assistance she sells in person and house half a bay area craft fairs and pop ups asshole asshole so consignment and custom commissions worldwide how shows include any handmade emporiums sf bizarre urban air market yesterday made luna part shot guard sub zero clockwork alchemy and the trite museum no upcoming shows include the temescal street fair and berkeley spark current past retailers includes san jose museum quilts and tar sales petite galleria studio bon journo ideas meal and discover san jose in silicon valley as well as a steel beam and the nutcracker on the east coast and other worlds in the seattle area okay great thank you for reading your bio thank you yeah it takes really brave people to get up here and be in these workshops so I'm really grateful for all of you the first thing so I got to spend some time with katherine's bio and the first thing that I noticed right off the bat is it catherine did you write this? Okay, so katherine is a talented writer obviously like she knows how to put put words together it's it's well written so that was that was awesome and I love that you talk about your influences you know you mentioned your mom and your your schooling and I really loved that moment when you talk about the dry spell in the job market. You know, I feel like that kind of drew me drew me into your story. Good. Yeah, no, I thought that that was great. And and then you mentioned, like, specifically, what you make, like, okay, make steampunk ornament, I make you use your killjoy and make this I make that them one of the things I think catherine noticed this issue was reading it is, wow, this is a really long sentence, you know? So that's one of things when I said, read it out loud, that's something you're definitely gonna get from it. And I think the other thing is thinking about this is really hard for me because I'm a long winded person and and I also write so I'm definitely in need of always a good editor, but to think, what is the information? What is the minimal amount of information I can say so that the person gets my point here, the minimal amount of information. So just in those three paragraphs, you mentioned california, the bay area of the pacific northwest, santa anna, san jose, silicon valley, italy, in seattle, so they're eight places mentioned in three paragraphs, and I was just like you know, it just it was just too much for me, you know? It kind of reminds me of is it gabriel garcia marquez in the beginning is book they introduced, like, five hundred characters or something, and then they need to have this, like, map in the front or, like, game of thrones, if anybody watches that it's just like, who is this person, but I can't stop watching, so you really need to think about, like, what is relevant, what people need to know, and then that goes along with lengthy end part with those past shows, we all care about that, you know, because we might know what those shows are, but the general person that's reading this is just going to stop right there. I don't I don't know any of this is actually written as the target market is show jury that totally makes totally makes sense. But even as I mean, I guess every show jury's different and it's going to depend on who's on who's on who's reading your bio what what your bios for but for me, I would just pick out the top two, okay? You know, if you're going to list him, just pick out the top two hour three, you know, um, and then, you know, I mentioned how I really love that story about your mom but I kind of wanted to be there a little bit more I kind of wanted to like be in the kitchen with you while you were like making homemade pop rock it's in like or whatever I'm making this up because I obviously don't know your childhood but where she like married like art and d I y and science together and you like never forgot that or something it's like I love that I think like that mother moment keeping that in there and then um the dry spell you know of having like that's like the storytelling part of it uh and then just kind of like condensing in cutting so I I rewrote katherine's bio it's only three sentences long katherine's probably not coming back after this thing it's actually it's actually like four five senses so I did a short version in a long version and just going tio yeah this is this is perfect the one that's up so splendid colors creates laser cut jewelry d I y craft kits and homegoods featuring a mix of iconic travel science and cultural imagery splendid color started in two thousand eleven when founder designer catherine hedges create her first piece of laser cut julia tech shop in san jose I felt like that detail was very important to katherine katherine's passion for industry and craft emerge when she put her postmasters biology job on on hold and open an etsy shop and has never looked back from her mexican full cart sugar school earings inspired by her southern california childhood to who our innate steampunk inspired snowflake holiday ornaments influenced by I'm kind of making stuff up by her love of nineteenth century vintage us that excite odo spending close okay well this one did colors foundered and designer catherine hedges attention to detail in passion for creating modern pieces with an affection from vintage whimsy nostalgia is embodied in every piece she creates shop correspondent colors online of area craft shows or in west coast independent shops a museum stores so are you guys missing anything from this one? You might be the mom yeah I didn't want to make up that mom's story but I think like a sentence of mom's story would be great yeah basically what I was trying to show here is editing and how andi I think I know this so well because it's something I struggle with personally that I've had to learn but you know we think we need more information than we dio with everything with everything so you can take this if you want you khun burnett you khun switch things around you can throw in that story about your mom that we want so much you can do whatever you'd like but my I guess my objective of this lesson was editing okay, well I'm way think um the last part of your bios tohave a great headshot so you want to be flattering and professional and natural and on brand you want to be you know, like walking in there you don't have like a picture of you and your husband in a bar back up there yeah, the bottom the bottom picture there I actually did uses my headshot for a while because I didn't have one but luckily I mean you know, like it would fit for me but it was fine seeking help from a professional photographer a student of friend and doing you know again cash or trade trade for product trade for services paint baby suit whatever it is maybe your you know partner is an accountant and you're trading your accountant's time is so you're going to cook dinner for a week for your partner and then your partner is going to do two hours of accounting for this photographer or review their taxes or something get you don't have money get creative so here the one on the right you may have seen before is my current had shot that's professional guess what I traded for that okay? I traded a patrick should booth for that so that one on the left I took with my iphone and I still use that as a headshot sometimes it breaks all the rules and wearing sunglasses you can't even see my face but you know, like I said, we are lucky to be in an industry where we can break the rules.

Class Description


Selling at craft fairs is a big investment of time, money, and resources – it’s also one of the most powerful venues a crafter has for getting products in front of people. In Secrets of Selling at Craft Fairs: How to Get In, Make Sales, and Grow Your Business, Nicole Stevenson teaches you everything you need to know about working the craft fair circuit.

Craft shows are complex affairs. From the application, to the preparation, to the actual hustle there are many variables to plan and prepare for. Nicole has been a vendor at over 300 craft shows and produced over 40 – in this class she'll help crafters make informed, strategic decisions about where to invest their time and effort. You’ll learn how to:

  • Find and apply to the right show
  • Develop your “look” using basic branding
  • Prepare for shows with products, checklists, staff, and a pitch
  • Merchandise and display products for maximum effect
  • Deal with pricing, permits, and taxes

Nicole will offer insights on troubleshooting common challenges so you aren’t left in the lurch without the equipment or information you need to do a great job. You’ll also learn strategies for keeping in touch with customers and building relationships with event producers that last long after the show ends.

The world of craft fairs is complex and it is not always easy finding the right match.  Secrets of Selling at Craft Fairs: How to Get In, Make Sales, and Grow Your Business makes the process of finding your perfect fit as stress-free and fun as possible.

Reviews

a Creativelive Student
 

I've been growing my business successfully online for the last six years, but hadn't shown my work in person for a decade. As a refresher, I took Nicole's craft show class to be sure that I made the most of the time I would have in front of my customers. Because of the preparedness and mindset that I gained from Nicole's teaching, my show was a huge success. My interactions with the customers, producers, and other vendors were genuine and joyful, building a stronger foundation for future business and relationships. This course took the worry and stress off my shoulders so I could enjoy the opportunity that I had. Thanks, Nicole! Tamara Kraft Pithitude