Sunday, April 4, 2010

The World's Worst Craft Fair

Yikes.  Yesterday I did the WWCF.  It was grim!  Here's what happened.  My best client asked me if I'd do a craft fair at her daughter's school.  Their first one.  (my first clue and I ignored it).  Naturally, I said ok.  I borrowed a tent and tables and chairs and yesterday the big day arrived.

However, on Thursday I get an email form the coordinator of the fair saying that we could go do set up on Friday evening.  I thought, that's nice, they must have good security.  On Friday I get two emails.  one explaining that if you are going to set up early (that evening) it is at your own risk because they have....NO security! Now come on... I was raised in Catholic schools.  They have nuns!  Whaddaya mean, no security?  The second email is to tell me that she has broken her foot so someone else will be the new coordinator.

Anyway, she goes on to say that they have a gate... but no lock and absolutely nobody to watch anything you might leave there.  Now really.  WHO would take their tents and stuff and leave it overnight in an unsecured place?  Even knowing nuns are watching?  So, we nix that idea and wait until Oh dark thirty as they say in the military.

I wake up at 4Am.  WHY this happened, I don't know.  But, I am awake and up so I get up and do kitty chores.  At 5Am I drag my poor long suffering Hunnibunni out of bed.  We go to Starbucks.  It is a dark and dismal day.  Cheerful kid that I am, I sez, Self, it will get better.  I am SOOO stupid!

We get to the school and there is not one sign, no cars, no people, no activity.  No  nothing.  Now, we are veterans of craft fairs.  By 6:30AM on craft fair day, there is tons of activity.  So, I get out my paper from the school thinking, maybe I have the day wrong.  Nope.  It is the right day.  We drive around the block a few times when finally, across the street from where the fair is supposed to be, Brian spots cars and people.  Still no signs or directions.  It is now raining and the wind is picking up.  And it is still dark, dreary and nasty.  WHERE are these nuns who can talk to God to fix this weather???

A very nice person meets us at the gate and directs up to a spot that doesn't seem to be the one they said I had in my confirmation.  It is on the outside basketball court.  Ok, this is Hawaii, everything is outside.  By now, it is howling, raining, freezing (for Hawaii) and just miserable.  We finally get the tent set up but the wind is threatening to blow it away every 4 seconds.  I am unable to put my jewelry boxes out because they just blow of the table.  Swell.  Are we having fun yet?  It's now 8AM.

Finally, the nice greeter woman comes over with two kids who go to school there.  She anchors the girls to the tent legs.  I have visions of these two little girls flying through the air still attached to the tent legs.  In fact, one guy's tent did fly away.  Was awful.  :(

Anyway, I tell her this isn't going to work.  I can't display anything because it will blow away and get soaked.  She toddles off to see if she can't move us.

Now, when I was signing up for this fair, I asked She of the Broken Foot to be in a protected area, cafeteria or lanai?  She tells me there is nothing like that.  Ok.  So, Nice Greeter Woman comes back and shows me a nice under-the-awning spot on the lanai.  TONS of room.  I try to talk the guy next to us, who is selling Hawaiian cookies, to move, too.  There is lots of room.

So, about 16 people jump in to help us move.  Including the kuki guy.  (that's Hawaiian for...cookie) :D  I get all set up and the weather turns even worse.  The winds are now tropical storm force, it's raining, almost like sleet but naturally, not frozen.  :)  I know, you guys are all saying...that's what sleet IS!  I don't care.  It FELT like sleet.  :D  Buffalo girl knows about sleet.  :(

Things are blowing all over the place and there are no customers.  Time is dragging by.  It turns out that the school didn't bother to put up any signs on their fence announcing the fair until about 2 hours after the fair started.  Genius. :(  Then the sign was pink with curlycues and pale lettering which rendered it completely unreadable from a moving car.  I am sure that people driving by thought, how nice, Sacred Hearts has a pink sign.  Jeez.  :(

In the few times between sleeting attacks, I wander around talking to other vendors.  I fear a vendor uprising.  There are some seriously unhappy people here.  Nobody is selling anything.  I think that it is a good thing the other woman broke her foot or some of the vendors might have offered to do it for her.  Most people just took it all with the proverbial grain of salt.  But there were a few pretty unhappy people.

The fair is supposed to go until 3PM.  By noon people are talking about packing up.  Nobody does as a small number of people show up.  A very few sales occur and the uprising is mitigated temporarily.  But, at 2PM we all packed up to leave.

I dart over and buy kukis.  :)  Delish!  I make a few sales.  I have lovely neighbors next to me and my girlfriend shows up and B is here so we have fun.

But, I have to tell you.  The next time someone says, we are having a craft fair.  It's our first one.  I'm saying NOOOOOO! It truly was the worst craft fair in the universe.


Melobeau said...

Oh Moe, what an experience. Even with all the trials you manage to turn it in to a fun humorous essay. I'm glad that at least you got some kukis out of it. (So I'm guessing you have not reserved your space for next years craft fair.)

Jackie said...

Oh man!! This sounds bad, I'm so sorry you had to spend a day like this. I once did a Christmas show where they did little advertising and used the same sign as your Sacred Hearts did! It was crazy.

Kathi said...

well that sounded like a ton of fun.....NOT! Hugs Ipo. It can only get better. And what a wonderful hunnibunny to get up at oh dayam dark hundred with you

MoeArt said...

You're right, Anita. I most certainly did NOT reserve a space. I asked several vendors if they'd do this fair again. Everyone snarled. :D

MoeArt said...

Yep, it was pretty grim. But, it's all over with now. Thank goodness! :D

MoeArt said...

You're right, Ipo. He is the best Hunnibunni1

Cindy Lietz, Polymer Clay Tutor said...

Oh dear Moe, that does sound like it sucked! I've been to terrible craft fairs where the only sales were some trades with the vendors, but I've never had one in a tropical storm! One upside is that you most likely will never attend one that is worse and you did get to eat some yummy kukis! LOL

Gayle said...

What a nightmare. I've never done a craft fair and now I'm thinking I don't want to!

MoeArt said...

Cindy, THAT is the power of positive thinking! WTG, GF! xoxo

MoeArt said...

Nah, Gayle, most craft fairs are super. They are tons of work but fun and usually lucrative. It's just when they're bad, they are just awful. ;D The clue to craft fairs is to check out how long they've been doing them. This was a first one so it, by definition, was grim. :D