this was the start of many markets to come...
Well, let me be honest here... I didn't know the first thing about being a vendor at a market. Especially a large vendor market like Bethel Woods. Always in love with the venue and the history behind Bethel Woods, which for those of you that don't know is where the original Woodstock took place back in August, year 1969. The venue itself has beautiful property and hosts numerous of vendor markets a year, which is just amazing. Signing up for my very first market and especially at this location was a very big deal for me.
I'm going to go ahead and share some of the things that I prepared for as a first time vendor and not really knowing what the hell I was doing! First of all, all I knew was to plan, plan, plan and ahead of time. After accomplishing my first two-day vendor market, the amount of preparation was definitely more than I anticipated.
So, I started off with a checklist of what needed to be done ahead of time and boy am I glad that I kept to it! For me, it's so easy putting together a list that needs to be dont, but the part of actually getting the checklist checked off is the harder part haha! (well, duh) here's a few things I considered preparing for my first vendor market:
✿ Immediately thought of design ideas because that's the best part - you really want it to read your brand and carry a cohesive style throughout
✿ Inventory, Inventory, INVENTORY- this is so important for your market! You want to be sure you write what you have in stock and what you plan on making. I also considered in the audience/ customers- I wanted to create product that also may interest them a little more.
✿ Payment System- you need to have a type of payment system, everyone pays card nowadays and barely anyone pays cash ! I went with Square which was very easy for my first rodeo and very smooth sailing to set-up.
✿ Lastly, I put together a checklist of what to pack. There are a lot of different elements to add in there than just your product! In Moonwake Meadow's case there was tablecloths, tables, custom signs and stands, marketing material, bags, tissue paper and the list goes on. I rather be over prepared than under thats for sure.
These are a few things in mind that I did find important to include into my first experience at a vendor market. Choosing your venue as well has a lot to do with your experience. You want a venue space that fits well with your work and that you know your clientele is there. It is intimidating for sure to go ahead and do a first market with zero experience. Especially when there were literally vendors I've met that have done markets for 20+ years!
I must say there is nothing like being involved in a market. I'm sure that there can be hiccups along the way and that not every market is going to be what you imagined. Which is only situations that we can learn! I have only done two markets thus far and have one planned for this coming summer but from my experience, I love the vibe of it all. I was able to meet so many different people and discuss my love for what I do and have a connection, even during covid. So if your thinking of trying out a market, I say go for it!