Freebies,  Tips

5 Tips for Surviving Your First Craft Market – plus a free checklist!

So you’ve signed up for your first market. You took the leap, paid the booth fee, and now you’re kinda freaking out because you have no idea what to expect.

Don’t worry, I got you.

I recently did my first market and if it wasn’t for a few tips that I received ahead of time, I would have been a nervous wreck (I can’t just wing-it when it comes to most things. I need to be 110% prepared for all possible situations… ridiculous I know.)

Craft Market Tip #1

Prepare your display ahead of time

Set up your table and display at home ahead of time. Once you’ve got it setup how you like it, take a photo so that if you forget anything you can quickly and easily reference that photo on the day of the market.

Craft Market Tip #2

Pack everything you can the night before

If you feel safe leaving your products and supplies in your vehicle overnight, pack everything into your car the night before. That way when you wake up early on market day, you can just get ready, have breakfast, and not feel rushed.

It will also allow you some time to think of anything you may have forgotten, while trying to fall asleep the night before the market, because when else would you think of ALL the things when you really need sleep?

Craft Market Tip #3

Arrive early to set up

For my first market, the time slot I was assigned for unloading and setting up was at 7:45am. I live 90 minutes from that market (crazy, I know…), so I woke up at 5am and left the house just after 6am. I arrived around 7:30am and had plenty of time to unload, setup, eat some snacks, and make some last-minute changes to my display.

If you’re wondering: yes, it was a ridiculously long day. But it was fun!

Craft Market Tip #4

Bring all the food

I brought what I thought was a ridiculous amount of snacks. I ate everything and was starving by the end of the day. I’d say bring 2-3x as much food as you think you’ll need. It’s better to have some left over than be famished when it’s time to pack up and move your stuff.

That being said, most markets usually have food vendors, so if you have a market buddy, it’s easier to go and grab some grub. I was doing this market by myself so I couldn’t leave my booth for very long.

Craft Market Tip #5

Bring a cash float

Typically you’ll need to bring a $100 cash float so that you can give change when people pay with cash. My items are all priced evenly ($3, $4, $10, $20) so there was no need for smaller denominations of change.

This is the cash float that I brought to the market:

  • 15 Loonies
  • 10 Toonies
  • 13 Fives

Bonus Tip

Have fun!

Go into your first market with an open mind and think of it as a learning experience more than anything. If you’re not as successful as you thought you would be, that’s okay. Now you know what audience may not be your target.

Don’t give up if you’re not a raving success the first time around. Try a different market! You’ll find your people. Nobody goes into running their own business thinking it’ll be easy and every experience is an opportunity to learn. You got this!

Freebie Alert

FREE Craft Market Prep Checklist

I’ve put together a quick and easy checklist that you can use to reference for helping you prepare for your first craft market that’ll ensure you won’t forget anything important!

Get your free checklist!