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Kaitlyn Lawless

Medium: Pottery
Year you most recently exhibited at this Show: 2017
Your Estimated Sales at this Show: $10,000+
Price Range of your Work: $14 - $275
Number of Years You have Exhibited in this Show: 2-3 times
Number of Years You have been doing Art Fairs overall: 2-3 years
Attendance: (1 is poor, 5 is great) 5
Location: 5
Facilities: 4
Ease of Participating: 5
Sales: 5
Overall: 5
Booth Fee vs. Your Sales Ratio: Great
Estimated Attendance: 50,001+ people

Good Things about this Art Fair:
The constant foot traffic and people willing to buy. Customers travel from around the country for this show and wait all year for it.

The hours are just long enough to make it a full day without dragging on in the evening. Plus, the Guild hosts a happy hour event and breakfast for artists!

What could this Art Fair have done better?:
I would love to see the trailer style porta- potty system.

Advice to Other Artists Considering this Show:
Don't miss it, it's constantly our top show of the year.

Avril Gordon

Medium: Jewelry
Year you most recently exhibited at this Show: 2017
Your Estimated Sales at this Show: $2,001 - $5,000
Price Range of your Work: $30 - $80
Number of Years You have Exhibited in this Show:
10+ times!
Number of Years You have been doing Art Fairs overall: Forever...
Attendance: (1 is poor, 5 is great) 4
Location: 4
Facilities: 3
Ease of Participating: 2
Sales: 3
Overall: 3
Booth Fee vs. Your Sales Ratio: Okay
Estimated Attendance: Not really sure

Good Things about this Art Fair:
I am with the Guild and they do try to make life easier for the artists. This year they had many treats/coffee/light snacks at a restaurant and it was terrific, plus a place to sit and relax before or during show.

They had the usual t-shirt and cold bottled water was always coming around.

What could this Art Fair have done better?:
This is not a show for the faint of heart. It is grueling hours. Always setup/tear down is a hassle with narrow pathway and tight areas.

One never knows what kind of weather the show will have but it seems during the show it ends up being hot, hot, and humid. Did not rain hardly which was a blessing.

Having Sun.12-6pm I don't think works as attendance was not good and those that did come were not looking, just walking. Not many big pieces or small pieces were being carried.

Personally it needs to be 3 days because the last day sales are just not there. Thurs/Friday were very good sales, but went down fast on Saturday & Sunday. Seemed to be the opinion of the artists I managed to speak with.

Advice to Other Artists Considering this Show:
It is a hard show to do with very long hours and when you factor in the weather (which always seems to be hot/humid) and the cost of not only the show but hotel, gas, food one really has to consider is it worth it.

It used to be very good, but not there anymore (maybe for a few).In general when the monies are tallied and expenses taken out, one has to say ...really??

Additional Commentary on this Show:
Way too many jewelers so it seems artists are not applying and when they do not their spaces are filled with jewelry.

Avril Gordon

Medium: Jewelry
Year you most recently exhibited at this Show: 2014
Your Estimated Sales at this Show: $5001-$10,000
Number of Years You have Exhibited in this Show: 10+ times!
Attendance: (1 is poor, 5 is great) 4
Location: 4
Facilities: 3
Ease of Participating: 2
Sales: 3
Overall: 4
Booth Fee vs. Your Sales Ratio: Okay
Estimated Attendance: 50,001+ people

Good Things about this Art Fair:
I participate in the Guild's Summer Art Fair and the volunteers and staff at the Guild are terrific. They are always there to help, booth sit, and generally make the long long hours of artists at the show a little easier. For us that have been on the art circuit for too many years to count, having help with setting up, booth sitting, a little breakfast really makes a difference. They are energetic which is nice when we are not!

Bad Things about this Art Fair:
The hours, the hours...and the hours. Also, normally the heat, though this year the weather was perfect. Cool temps in the morning and never getting too hot. It was wonderful.

Advice to Other Artists Considering this Show:
This is a difficult show to do, especially by oneself. I am alone so I have to rely on booth sitters. However, because I have non precious jewelry I really have to be at my booth, so usually away no longer than 10 minutes. I drive 12 hours one way and for me between that and the very long hours it is a grueling show. When you divide the drive to the festival, setup a day before, 4 days of show and the drive back you really have to be serious about doing it. Plus the cost of all of that.

Additional Commentary on this Show (or about this form):
Seeing other artist friends and enjoying loyal customers is very nice. Re: form, glad to offer my opinion.

Nels Johnson


First, I am a photographer and am in the Guild Show on Main Street. There are four other official shows and then there are the scabs, it makes for a whole mess of arts/crafts in downtown. Seasoned fairgoers know which ones they want to go to. If they are looking for the truly one-of-a-kind art experience they go to the original show which is around the Bell Tower. They also hit some of the booths in the South University show. The rest of us depend on former customers, mailing lists and the "In the Moment" customer.

Overall, many experienced better sales than last year, which is incredible, with the way the weather was this year. Many, barely made their expenses. A great many had sales that fell between $3k-$8K.


THE WEATHER, you can sum it up in two words--It Sucked!

SALES: It just depends what you sell, what your pricepoints are. If you have pricepoints of say $25-$450 you are going to have something to sell to everybody that attends. If you have high end, you only can appeal to a very small niche audience. Face it, in most of the shows there, mediocrity sells the most.

Back to economics. You end up with at least 13-hour days to sell and setup/teardown. Saturday you get a break, the show ends at 6pm. A lot of you don't have lights or fans, you just gotta sit there, stew in your juices, yet try to be perky so you can make that sale. Considering, and this is only a seasoned-guess, that the AVERAGE EXHIBITOR only makes about $5K at this show. Is it really worth it?

(Read the rest of the review at ArtFairInsiders.com)

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