Sunday, October 17, 2010

Lame Blog Post (Sorry)

Today I bring you one of my lamest blog posts ever. Since I am all stamped out and have nothing new of the crafty variety to show you, I thought I'd do an expose (ex-po-zay) of what I go through to set up for a craft show, and why it is so different from my weekly farmers market gigs.

Let's begin with "normal". This is the back of my car from May-Dec:

The numbers:

1. Post for my spinner rack
2. Base for my spinner rack
3 & 4. Two Plexiglas/plastic card racks. These will come back to haunt me later.

There's two black tables on top of the blanket, too. That blanket is not to hide anything; it's to keep the sun from fading the cards while they live in my car all summer. ;)

Let's take a peek under that blankie:

We have boxes of cards, my small table, my chair, and over on the right - my tent. To the right of the tent are some nylon straps that everyone should have handy. You'll see them again later.

This is my back seat:

Those are the 4 hangers for my card rack and they don't collapse down any smaller than that. Lucky for me they JUST fit this way in my back seat.

Under the wire racks is a towel (always have a towel in your car), my red Olympic mittens, and in that box under the towel are some purple napkins I use for my holiday shows. Under all that is a box with a display thingie I got last year for my shows.

The front seat:

For market days, my big bag (sales slips, change, calculator, signage, and I think a 10-lb brick) sits there along with one or two fabric shopping bags with other stuff - my flower vase, dog water bowl, 1/2 gallon container of water, etc., etc.

Oh, those things on the floor? Those are tent weights - empty cat litter bottles full of water. They are sporting handsome covers made for me by MB. She is a sweetie.

I drove to my storage unit (I told you my condo is teeny tiny) to pick up the rest of my stuff. Here are 4 more wire hanger parts for my second spinner rack:

I just stacked them on top of the first 4 already there.

In the back, I added two more tables to the top of the pile and moved the spinner rack bases to the center of the car:

Then I looked at the rest of this stuff that still needed to go in:

I had to take the plexi card racks out to put in those extra tables, and I KNEW they wouldn't fit back in. So I just put the walls in, and here's what it looked like at that point:

1. The wall sections
2. Wall supports
3. A bazillion table cloths
4. I've added a second set of pipes that make up the center pole for my second spinner rack.
5. Those nylon straps again.

Then I needed to deal with those Plexiglas racks. I ended up wedging them in from the front:

They don't nest, so this was truly a challenge!

Since I didn't want to die on the way home, I decided to secure the Plexiglas racks with ... the red nylon straps!

I secured the ends to the tables in the back of the car:

Nice, huh? And no, I can't see out of the back of the car when it's packed like this. There is no end to the excitement in a crafter's life.

Since I packed the car early in the day on Friday, I had the rest of the time to color all those City cards! OMG, what was I thinking?

I finally got them all colored except for the outline shading. Then I had to make an executive decision. I was so tired, I decided they looked just fine without the shading. What do you think:

Can you tell the difference? The bottom one is shaded all around the buildings, and the top one is not. I am okay without it, so I called this DONE!

I had agreed to run over to the venue late Friday night. Most of you think I was probably smoking something, but I wasn't. Normally I don't go out once I get home from work, but I offered to help mark the spaces in exchange for the privilege of unloading my car the night before the show. In case you haven't ever done this, if the place is close enough - do it! It is sooooo nice to arrive Saturday morning and be all done!

Friday night all I had time for was the unloading. No set-up time. This was my spot when I left Friday night:

Yeah, I had to undo all that packing and empty out the car. I got the walls up to save floor space so I could move around without stepping on them.

Then I went home and crashed.

The next morning I headed over with my 50-lb bag o-crap and a few more boxes of cards, making sure to fit it all on the front passenger seat. It HAD to fit there, because I'd be bringing everything home after the show, and there wasn't one spare inch of space left in the BACK anywhere.

After I got done setting up, this was my space:

I was going to get real table cloths this year, but obviously I failed. These are okay; I just can't transport them in a way they don't looks like this. Oh, well, no one cares.

And yes, a few people set up their tents inside. Don't ask me why. But it gave me a nice wall. ;)

This is the stuff I don't normally have with me for my markets:

I used the purple napkins as contrast and to fill the space of the largely NOTHING I have on this table. That rack on the right is a fun way to display magnets and bookmarks so people can see them better. The extras are in those baskets. I did sell a few bookmarks, but not one magnet. And I didn't sell the butterfly frame, either.

Traffic was pretty slow, so I had a lot of time to take pics. Too bad for you I took them with my phone, so they are blurry, but hopefully they'll be fun anyway.

The woman across from me had a nekkid bust to display her necklaces:

She really should have put a t-shirt on that. Seriously. I was going to say something to her at the end of the show, but I forgot. ;(

These piggies were so cute:

Pretty much one for any occasion or decor!

One of the vendors had tri-colored hair:

Yellow + orange + red, with a little pink in there somewhere. I think it was in support of some charity, but still ... it was a bit stark. I know, it's ART!

The booth next to me finally rolled back one of their sides a little bit. They were selling doggie clothing, and I got to look at this guy's butt the rest of the day:

Near the end of the show, this guy came by:

He's 6 years old, and he had a blankie in there. He mostly curled up, but we'd coaxed him out so we could see him. ;)

After the show, which was okay, but soooo not worth the effort of set-up, I started to break everything down and MB's entire family came over to offer their help. I finally caved and let them haul all my stuff out to the curb while I got my car. Then I packed it all back in, secured the plexi card racks, and drove home.

Then I UNLOADED all the extra stuff again so I'm able to do 3 more market weekends - don't need to unload and reload all that extra stuff every weekend. Now it's back to "normal", and I'm all set for next weekend.

Every inch of my body hurt last night. This is what happens when you go from couch potato to craft show junkie. Ow, my back. I took a long soak in an Epsom salt bath and finally started to un-hurt.

The end.

Today is glorious, and I think I'll get off my butt and go for a walk. I will! I hope to have SOMEthing crafty to show you soon.

Thanks for stopping by (and for reading...)!


  1. Thank you for this post! Not lame at all, in my opinion...

    You have summed up for me in one post why I DO NOT do craft shows or markets! I could possibly be convinced to teach a class or something along those lines, but to do all that prep work and hauling and setting up and tearing down for a "maybe, possibly" sale is waaaay more than I'm willing to do!

    Bless you for soldiering on, though, and it looks l like you've got the packing thing down to a science at this point!

    Glad you're feeling better today, too...

  2. OMG, I'm exhausted! It was so nice of your friends to come help with the load-out. So you got everything back in your car? Because wasn't it full Friday night, then you brought more stuff Saturday morning?

    Your set-up looks great!


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