How to Prepare for Your First Ever Craft Fair [Instagram LIVE Replay]

first craft fair

I remember those “first fair jitters” before setting up a booth for TL Yarn Crafts back in 2014. I had so many doubts about how much product to bring, how to set everything up, and whether I was even cut out for this. Fast forward 4 years, and I’ve got craft shows down to a science, using a tried-and-true timeline that I shared in my recent Instagram LIVE broadcast.

Truth time: my very first craft show was an absolute bomb. Maybe one day, after my 4th glass of wine, I’ll show you the photo of my set-up. For now, just envision two round tables (*facepalm*) covered with every crocheted item you can think of in every color with no cohesion or second thoughts about merchandising. In the photo, I’m standing next to my best friend and we’re both beaming like we’d just hit the lottery. By the end of the show, I realized that I’d not only picked the wrong show, but I was woefully unprepared to be successful.

These days, I use a timeline of tasks to help prepare for craft shows. It’s broken down in categories so I don’t drop the ball on anything. I’m constantly on top of making product, preparing my display, covering my legal and financial bases, promoting my attendance to my audience, and taking care of my personal needs.

I cover my full 6 month timeline in my latest Instagram LIVE broadcast, as well as these points:

  • How to set your income goals before the first show
  • Ways to get past your “first fair jitters”
  • Why craft shows are a great way to build your email list
  • How to determine if a show was “successful” for you and your business


Have you tried craft shows before? Leave a comment and let me know if you think craft fairs are a good idea for your business. Catch my Instagram LIVE streams every Tuesday at 7pm EST for more advice and knowledge about being a handmade biz. 

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  1. AvatarAngela says

    Thank you so. Much. For this video. You got me thinking about better planning, realistic financial goals, and balance in preparation. Thanks to you and everyone who shares on your live feeds!

    • Toni L.Toni L. says

      I’m so very glad it’s helpful. I’ve learned a lot along the way and get so excited to share it with others 🙂

  2. AvatarJen Kronewitter says

    This was fantastic. There are so many things I don’t think I’ve thought about and might need to push my 1st show back a bit. I want to get one under my belt but I want to be prepared! I didn’t think about the impulse purchases. So much to do! Thanks so much. You are awesome!

    • Toni L.Toni L. says

      I’m so glad it was helpful, Jen! There always feels like there’s more you can be doing, but the best education about shows is by just getting one over with, lol. You learn a lot by how your day goes and by chatting with your neighbors, the customers, and the show organizers. Best of luck! I would love to hear how it goes!

  3. AvatarRegi Cruz says

    Hi Toni.. I’ve been following and watching all of your ig live reply on youtube and I’ve learned a lot. It is really imformative and helpful. I actually watched this video a day before my craft show and made an impulse items the last minute and it was the best seller and almost sold out. Your tips and tricks really worked! Thanks for sharing. Kee it coming! 😊

    • Toni L.Toni L. says

      I’m so glad that tip worked for you! It’s the little things we do to cultivate our businesses that really take us to the next level. Happy crafting, and good luck at your next show!

  4. AvatarImani- The Knotty Buffalo says

    I’m a little late on this blog as my first craft show is next weekend :O !! But these tips are soo helpful. I’ve made a list of things like charge my phone and stuff for Square but I didn’t even think of bringing petty cash or mints and extra water; which I should know cause I talk a lot! Can’t wait to see how it goes and adjust for the next one in November!

    • Toni L.Toni L. says

      I’m so glad these tips were helpful! It’s always the little things that make our break an experience like a craft show. Wishing you all the luck in November!

  5. AvatarLenore DeLitizia says

    I’m here in North Carolina, and my daughter-in-law and I are preparing for a craft show at the end of September. I’m so glad I found you because you gave some information I hadn’t even thought of. After the show, I’ll be sure to get back to you with an update.
    Keep up the good work.

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