Celebration: My First Market Day

I am happy today.  Not just my usual happy, but specifically happy over the outcome of my first foray into craft fair/market sales for this year.  Yesterday, after many days of prep, Dayna and I took our wares to the Chattanooga Market (http://chattanoogamarket.com), set up our displays, and sold stuff.  Despite a setup that was quite vulnerable in the wind, less than optimal display arrangement, and an unseasonably cool day, we had a constant stream of visitors and a respectable sales total for the day.  Dayna is becoming a very effective sales partner.  She greets every person who pauses at our booth, jumps up to help anyone who has a question or lingers over an item, encourages people to bargain for prices they can handle, and points out alternatives from her knowledge of our merchandise. 

Because I am just starting at the Market, and haven’t committed for a huge number of sales dates, we had a perimeter location next to a huge open area of the wall.  We were subject to every breeze and gust of wind, and it was colder than any May day should be.  When Market staff realized it, they tied a couple of tarps over the open area, giving a good bit of relief.  Service and organization are amazing under the owners that took control last year.  I’m pleased to see weekly reports of Market income, broken down by food and nonfood venders, and comparisons of current attendance and income with previous years.  I don’t need a report to know that attendance has increased phenomenally over the past two years.  The visitors we saw in the first hour out-numbered some full days that I had two years ago.  People were still browsing and making purchases in the final hour, something that was unheard of in 2007.  The whole day we had -WooHoo!- live music.  I couldn’t tell you the names of the performers because I didn’t have time to go to the stage and get info, but I would treasure CDs from any of them.  What a great atmosphere!

I always take my work to the Market.  I crocheted two hats while I talked with customers, rearranged displays, and bonded with my next-booth neighbors.  The neighbors were making it a family affair, and they were quite a family, with two sisters selling wonderful products, and their children, husbands, and father providing company and entertainment.  I especially enjoyed Gray, a 20 month-old boy who didn’t utter a word but managed to communicate just fine when he came over to pet my yarn and share his cookie.  He took his baby cousin’s hat and slapped it on the front of his head at a crazy angle, then walked around in an amazing comic performance, fully aware that he was the center of attention. 


During the course of the day I noticed Dayna writing on a small notepad.  She finally told me that she was noting ideas for improving our market days, and that she would share with me at the end of the day.  We discussed them last night, and I can’t wait to implement them.  Her insights were great, very well thought-out and practical.  I’ve got some work to do!  Guess that means ending this celebratory writing and getting with it!



One Response

  1. Sorry I didn’t get there yesterday. Be sure to let us know in advance when you’re going to be at the Market. Glad it was a good day for you (and Dayna)!

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