Thursday, November 17, 2016

Craft Fair Part II: Cost of Materials

I think it's important to talk about the cost of the materials I had to purchase to make all of my craft fair items.  It is true that making is not cheap and I made a lot of items that required more than my fabric stash.

My favorite purchase was the KAMSnap Setter Starter Pack, I purchased it on Amazon with 100 sets of snaps for about $18; I ended up buying more snaps after I'd used so many.  I am very happy to have this tool and would recommend it to everyone.  I will never use velcro again and have already removed the velcro off of our family bibs and applied the snaps to the older bibs.  

Also pictured below is a whole bunch of colorful ribbon.  I got a set of about 20 spools for $7.50.

I really like the Dritz "Quick Turn" set I bought at Joann's for about $5- perfect for the small tubes of fabric one uses to make the Chapstick key rings.  I also used a fair amount of 1/4" washable tape instead of pins for positioning the chalkboard fabric squares within their fabric frame.

Other items I bought for the craft fair:

  • A set of business cards printed from VistaPrint, $15 shipped.
  • a box of 150 "Thank You" shopping bags for customer purchases: $14
  • Display racks to showcase my items: my thrifting really paid off and I gathered these items now and then at yard sales over the summer.  I spent about $10 on all of them and look forward to using them repeatedly.  I'll share my displays in the next post.  
  • Essex Linen for the large pouches and Christmas fabrics for the towels and ornaments (ordered off of Hawthorne Threads and Etsy, still have quite a bit leftover)
  • PUL and Blackboard fabrics ($6.50-3.49 per yard)
  • Pocket pack tissues, which I included with the purchase of a pocket pack cover (8 for $1)
  • Dish Towels ($5.99 for 3), tea towel set (12 for $18)
  • 4" wooden embroidery hoops (I found that the Amazon ones were of much better quality than the set I ordered on eBay- the prices were approximately $14 for a dozen)
  • wool felt and red pom poms
  • thread
Items I had in my stash that I used:
  • zippers
  • interfacing
  • batting scraps
  • fabric, fabric scraps
  • ribbon
  • circular split rings
  • vintage ric rac
  • wool felt
  • thread
As you can see from these lists, I really had to buy a lot of things!  It definitely cuts into your profits.  But the old adage is true: you definitely have to spend money to make money.  

I am embarrassed to admit that I really did not do a good job at keeping track of my expenses, which is Business for Dummies 101, right?!  I just got into so much of a frenzy of trying to order my supplies in a timely manner and I grabbed things at Joanns whenever I had the chance, I ordered some things online... it was all a bit chaotic!  Going forward, I vow to do a better job at keeping track of all of this.

Now, just for fun.  I will share the items I bought at the craft fairs where I was a vendor.  At RMCA, my son's first grade teacher was selling handmade items out of wood and got this steal of a deal for $10:

At the other fair, I spied this vintage embroidery piece when I was setting up the day before.  It was $14.  It obviously needs some TLC but I couldn't even buy the vintage kit for that price!  If you have any words of wisdom regarding removing stains from vintage needlework, please share!

Thanks for reading.  I'll be back soon to share my specific experiences with selling at the two craft fairs.

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