Thursday, September 23, 2010

{ the creative connection event -- part 2 -- the handmade market }

The next part of our adventure at The Creative Connection Event that I want to share with you was my booth in the HandMade Market. I don't usually do craft shows, and in fact, this was only the second one that I've ever done. I worked all summer building inventory, which was a challenge with the volume of sales in my etsy shop, but I wanted to have a strong presence there. I actually brought my sewing machine to Minneapolis because I needed it for one of my classes, but I was glad to have it because I ended up doing some last minute work in my mobile Olive and Ollie studio. Or, in other words, my hotel room.

My sister Kate and I did a lot of prep work in our hotel room, tagging the clothes, and ironing things that needed it, so when we went down to the exhibit hall, all we really needed to do was set up. She was such a great help, and even ran to the Target up the street on a last minute trip to buy a second clothing rack. Here's what the booth looked like on Wednesday evening, for the preview.

In addition to my standard designs, I made some modern patchwork scarves and hung them from a vintage quilt rack. I loved the pop of color that they provided on the white table top. This project is really simple and quick and I'm thinking of making a tutorial for them later this fall.

I thought my booth looked ok, but I really felt that it was lacking something. So, I decided to pull the curtains back on the side. Since I was on a corner, there wasn't another booth directly to my right, so I opened up the curtain on that side, which helped a bit.

Then, like I often do, I had an idea pop into my head about 6 am the following morning, to run a clothes line on the two open sides of the booth, and hang some garments from it with clothes pins. Great idea, right? Of course, I didn't have any of those supplies with me, but thank goodness for the Target up the road. After the meet and greet coffee in the morning, I ran up the street and luckily found just what I was looking for. I really think that simple change added so much to my booth.

All in all, I had a great experience at the HandMade Market. I met some amazing people there, including so many talented artisans and designers. But the highlight of the event was when Nancy Soriano, one of the creators of The Creative Connection, and a personal hero of mine, interviewed me for F&W Media's new website, which is scheduled to go live next month. Can you believe it? I couldn't, and in fact I'm still kind of pinching myself. Nancy was so gracious and kind, and had even chosen some of my designs to be featured on her appearance on the local Minneapolis NBC affiliate. You can see the video here by clicking on the icon to the right in the link.

Honestly, as I said before, I'm still pinching myself about everything that happened last week. And I'm so honored to have had such an amazing experience at The Creative Connection Event.
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