Note: This post contains affiliate links. At no additional cost to you, whiteowlcrochetco. will receive a little monetary kick-back, helping to pay off student loans a few dollars and cents at a time!
For me, markets were the scariest thing about beginning a knitwear business. How does one even begin to prepare for putting oneself out into the world FOR THE FIRST TIME? I kept picturing standing behind my humble table, eyes glistening with desperation, for people to buy my handmade items, to not fail.
I panicked. A lot. I still do. But I find the best way to combat the panic and anxiety is to create a checklist of things to bring and things to do! In order to help you prepare for your next (maybe even your first) market, I've dumped my brain onto this post for you to peruse!
I typically begin with an "administrative" bin - things absolutely necessary in order to function - perhaps the most important bin of all. In this I place and check off:
- Square Reader (Get yours here: https://squareup.com/i/WHITEOWLC2)
- Cash Box with Float - I include approx. $200 in 50's (1), 10's (2-3), 5's (majority), toonies, loonies, and quarters. I personally make my market prices in a multiple of 5, rendering coin unnecessary unless I run out of 5's!
- Tablecloth - the first thing to go on your table!
- Business cards (I purchase mine from Vistaprint.ca)
- Mints or other attractive candy (seasonal)
- Banner or logo tablecloth runner (I purchased mine from Buzzfeed.com)
- Battery operated lights
- Portable battery chargers - I bring 2-3, one for my phone, one for my square reader (tap platform), and one back-up
- Needle & Thread
- Back-up batteries
- Measuring tape
- Pens & Notebook - keeping track of inventory in the case that you prefer not to use square for inventory purposes. Also for writing down any customer comments, questions, or requests.
- Snacks! You never know when you're going to be able to leave to check out that local food truck, or the canteen down the hallway. I like to bring a small cooler of drinks (water!!) as well!
- Medication. I personally am prone to headaches, especially in extroverted situations such as these. I bring a peppermint roller (cools you down, even if you don't have a headache!), ibuprofen/acetaminophen, any prescriptions.
- Yarn, hooks, and knitting needles! Perfect for lulls, or in situations where you'd like to give your customers some space to decide on their favourite item!
- Packing tape - you never know when you're going to need to tape the shit out of something! This year, I've already taped the shit out of some crates (wind, outdoor event) and a mirror (my fat butt kept knocking it off the table - oops)!
- Price List
I'm likely forgetting something on this long list (forever feeling like I'm forgetting something), but you get the jist! Next up, inventory packing list.