Thursday, May 13, 2010

Art Fair "Do's and Don'ts"

Last weekend was my second time participating in the San Juan Capistrano Art Fair. Business was slower than molasses, so I took the opportunity to take a bunch of pictures while sitting with nothing to do. I kept an account of my thoughts while taking the pictures and came up with a rather helpful "Do and Don't" list.
See what you think:

When you get to the Fair waay early, DO walk around and take pictures of the Mission. The morning light was beautiful and even though it wasn't open, I could see over the walls pretty well.

Do take yummy snacks and books and magazines to discuss with your friend.

Do put on a thick skin. It helps during the time people say, "Honey, don't you want to get that domino necklace for your mom?" And Honey replies, "Naaaaaah."

Don't expect heavy foot traffic the day before Mother's day, like we did. It just wasn't there.

Here is a good one. Don't, by any means drop the "F" bomb on the person waiting outside the bathroom at Starbucks just because she tried the door handle to see if the bathroom was occupied. Especially if you are wearing a name tag that has "San Juan Capistrano Art Fair" on it. And your name.
Because we will find you.

When we find you, we will report you to the director of the Fair. 
Just be glad we didn't buy any of your soap and wash your mouth out with it.

I thought my mother would appreciate this one. Do take a picture of how you can make your walker more festive and share those decorating ideas with someone who has one. Who needs a boring walker, anyway?

While noticing a mother and daughter interacting, do not gawk when the mother tells the daughter she is too young to wear black while the daughter is admiring children's hair bows. Especially when the mother is wearing mostly black. I know it's hard , but do not stare, it's not polite.

This next idea I thought would be especially helpful to all of you.
When you have only made $20.00 in 4 or 5 hours, it might be a good thing to rethink what you are selling. Do think about selling Italian Ices. Everyone seems to like those.

When a customer comes joyously running up to the booth next to yours and announces, "I found the BANK!!!!", do NOT be jealous. Green just isn't a pretty color on some people. Remember the thick skin? It really comes in handy.

The word "bargain" didn't seem to help, either. As in, "the price of the collage is $55.00, but I'm willing to bargain." I will say it helped in the sense that this time the woman didn't put it down and turn tail and run.

When the local musician is playing, and you can't hear your customers because their music is too loud, I'm thinking it would be a good idea to pull the plug on their equipment. WAIT!! I meant Do NOT pull the plug on their equipment. That wouldn't be nice, and you need to play nice.

I do think it's o.k. to have fun people watching. 

This gal was adorable in these sandals (?).
So was this one:

I'm not sure how old you have to be to join the Red Hat Society, but I do hear when you join, you are old enough to wear purple and spit.
Plus you get to make your own hat. How much fun would that be??!

Wendy and I were trying to figure out what sport this gal played. I voted for beach volleyball.

And don't forget our furry friends need lots of shade!

Well, friends, feel free to take any part of this list and make copies of it for your next art fair experience.
My hope is that it will get you through your day with lots of laughter and a great outlook on life!
Much love,


  1. I so want to be a red hat lady! The ladies at church said I was too young, but that I could come along with them and wear a pink hat, lol.
    Anyway, better luck next time...you'll figure out what works at what venue.

  2. Lynn~ this was so funny~ I really got the feel of your day~ I've sat through quite a few craft and antique shows myself...I hear you!

  3. oh my gosh - your sense of humor is just too wonderful. love the bathroom story & it's photo...you are ruthless! i vote for the baby toes. and is that what a suntan on that gal?? i've always wondered what a suntan looks like...
    we are heading to our daughter's graduation in oregon tomorrow, and i'm afraid if everyone down there has suntans my husband & i are going to be blinding everyone with our glow-worm skin. or maybe they will all just think we are edward & bella...hahaha.
    i'm thinking you need to pack up your goodies & come up here to sell them, your things would be flying off your tables!
    don't get discouraged.

  4. DO take wonderful candid shots of your day and blog them to your bloggy friends...complete with funny narrations..

    DON'T ever dare lose that sense of humor...

  5. LOL LOL LOL! I can only add, do have a great attitude! And I think you did and then some! Great post, lots of fun!

    yapping cat

  6. Oh boy! I should print out a copy of these dos and don'ts...I think I will need it for my show in September!!!

    Especially the part about dropping the "F-Bomb" in the bathroom. But I will be setting up on a tiny county fairgrounds in Minnesota---do you think they will do that there???

    Love the walker. I am seeing plenty of those here at my Mom's...

    Ah, Lynn, you crack me up!

  7. Lynn,
    You are too funny! You make me laugh so hard!

    Those who are in this business most often don't make a ton of money, methinks! Oh, there are some but most of us just do it for the fun. I figure when it ceases to be fun, i will stop doing it! It's still fun.

    You do beautiful work...don't forget that. I think of you as a "real artist."

    Love the F-bomb story. That is very funny. Did she really sell soap?

    Love you, friend!

  8. Hi Lynn,
    I think Brenna must get her free spirit from you. Sorry you had such a lousy sales day, but it sounds like you had a blast anyway. And your photos of the mission are lovely.

  9. Hi Lynn
    I think we all have had shows like this one and I wish I would have taken candid shots all day - it would have lifted my spirits considerably - this was too funny!
    Have a great weekend