Monday, July 19, 2010

Tales from the Trove - Ocean City Summer Indoor and Outdoor Fine Arts and Crafts Extravaganza

In the wee hours of Saturday morning, as the bf and I were loading the truck, it was raining. And thundering. (No lightning.) I thought, "This doesn't bode well." But by the time we arrived at Carey Stadium next to Ocean City High School, it was hot and sunny. We were set up on the football field, and each tent was an island, set up so that shoppers could enter through either side. This was different from all the other shows I'd done, when the tents had been arranged side-by-side with no route out the back. Once we were set up, the bf had to go to work, so I settled in with Cosmopolitan and my much-loved copy of Downtown by Anne Rivers Siddons. And so the waiting began.
It was a slow, gauzy-hot sort of day. Sometimes a soothing breeze would whip through. At one point it uprooted one of the tents, sending it wheeling across the football field. I sold a few things. Among them were my Medium Midnight Jungle Tote, which was one of the first I painted, and my French Fry Fanatic Necklace and Tiny French Fry Love Tote. These last two went to a three-year-old girl who happily donned the necklace immediately. I heard a lot of nice comments about my work, others not so nice. Such is the gamble of presenting to the public.
Popo Flannigan, my neighbor, stopped by to say hello. You may recall that she is a landscape painter and dubs her body of work "Smileville." It was nice to see a friendly face.
Incredibly, a couple of first-time craft fair vendors asked me for advice. They wanted to know which shows to do, and what sort of earnings constituted a good show. Although I've done about a dozen shows and have a dozen more on deck, I still haven't a clue as to the secret of craft show success. But I smiled and said I could email them lists of shows I'd done, along with contact info and entrance fees.
My parents came once again. Always my champions, they made a purchase before circling the grounds to browse the other vendors. They found a charming painted gourd birdhouse to hang in their garden.
Five o' clock eventually rolled around, and I began to pack up my wares. Then the bf came to break down the tent, and we headed home to clean up before going out to dinner. There is nothing as nice as being clean and eating a delicious, civilized restaurant meal after a grueling day beneath the big top.
Next stop, Brigantine Funfest at the Presbyterian Church next Saturday. I hear they have a dunk tank.


Anonymous said...

This looks like lots of fun! I need to visit some of these craft fairs in N.J. soon. Thanks for stopping by my blog awhile back. :) I am digging your googly eye barrettes on your Etsy. FUN!

redlinc said...

your setup is amazing! can you come and teach me? mine never look that appealing for some reason.

sue114 said...

Tracy, Love your set-up!! It looks great :) Mine never even comes close. I only do a few shows a year so I don't fret too much about it. But I am still green w/envy :)

SuZ Stuff said...

Tracy, your set-up looks awesome! thanks for the up-dates on your summer adventure as a vendor at these shows-I really enjoy reading your blog-you have a special talent in both your writing & your art---
you go girl!

The Tote Trove said...

Thanks for the kind words, everyone! I really appreciate you reading!