These are just some things I found that have worked for me along the way. They may not necessarily work for you but you never know!

Organize everything you need

I find having this set up make setting up and taking down easier and faster.

  • Totes for your product.
  • Totes for displays and decor.
  • Tote/carrier for packaging and stationery. 
  • Carrier for money and food that small things you want to keep off to the side and have easy access to.

Create a stationary “toolbox” 

  • Pens and Sharpies - Just in case I need to make a quick note for someone or need to whip a quick sign.
  • Paper/notepad - Goes along with pen and Sharpie. Sometimes I get ideas and need to write them down. Especially when I am trying to conserve my phone battery.
  • Tape - To attach any signs I may have made to a display or where needed.
  • Washi tape - to close some shopping bags after a purchase. 
  • Twine - I keep it around just in case I need to tie something down when it gets windy or I need to reattach a price tag.
  • Scissors - Cut the twine or if I am making a sign and good to have around in general. 
  • Sticky labels - I keep these around just in case I need to cover a price tag or just add extra information to a product.
  • Extra price tags - you never know when a tag is going to fly away, fall off or completely miss tagging a product.
  • Business cards - there is always someone who wants a card to be able to get in touch with you in the future.
  • I keep my extra smaller signs in there if something sells out or I don't bring something.

Float/money

  • Have lots of change, two and one-dollar coins seem to be most the of the change given back at least for me.
  • Keep it something sturdy and easy to keep open. I find it easier to find change and sort through it if needed.
  • Charge your square reader the night before and take the charging cable with you just in case.
  • In the square app you can add your products to an inventory list with all the pricing, I suggest doing that so you don't have to add up the prices. I am still picking away at mine.

Table set up

  • Keep a spare tablecloth just in case you spill something or the table is bigger than planned.
  • Bring a comfortable chair. Some places supply a chair but might be uncomfortable. We leave ours in the car and get them if needed. I think the next chair will be one with a small table attached.
  • See if there is someone who will come sit and keep you company and someone to talk to and help where needed. I am lucky my husband and sometimes my mother-in-law will hang out with me!
  • If you can set up your table at home and play around with your setup to see what you have room for if you can make more it will help make setting up at the market faster.
  • Try to keep your displays similar it helps it flow a little better. I didn't at first but I am slowly changing it over time I didn't want to spend a ton on displays right away.
  • Don't crowd the table. I have started leaving things off and mentioning that I have the extra when needed.

Packaging

  • Have different-sized bags and tissue paper for wrapping you never know who is going to want a bag even if it’s a tiny item. 
  • I have a thank you stickers on the bags I give to the customer and little thank you papers with my information
  • Next on my list is to upgrade to better thank-you cards to pop in but I have designed anything I like yet.
  • I try to have bags that match with the season for example I try to have bags that are Christmas or Easter themed.
  • Have tissue paper to help with making the packing look a little more decorative especially if you know this might be a gift.

Signage & pricing

  • I try to have a detailed price list on the table and match it to the season, example for Christmas.
  • Small signs in front of the items just in case someone doesn't want to ask what the item is if they aren't sure. I changed the design of my signs to match the show or season.
  • I use Canva to make my bigger signs and for the smaller signs, I do it in Cricut Design Space since I use the Cricut to cut them out instead of cutting them myself.
  • If you have in your budget get a professional sign created for your setup. I designed my and had it printed through Canva and it was a reasonable price and it came fast. I have gotten so many compliments on it!

Other

  • Get there as soon as you can. So you don’t feel rushed to set up and rearrange if needed, check out other vendors, find the washrooms and have a chance to relax before the craziness begins.
  • Bring snacks and drinks or look for places before you get there for good coffee shops around the market. 
  • The venue may have garbage cans but I always bring a small bag because I may not get a chance to run over or they are just too far away it’s just convenient for you.
  • I try to use the downtime in between customers, to refill low stock, work on creations, work on my blog, and plan out my ideas. 
  • Try not to get discouraged and it's okay to be upset if it's dead and you don't break even. It's going to happen and all you can do is push through and hope your next market will be better.
  • If you have room and the tote is sturdy enough use it for a table for drinks or whatever you might need.

The most import thing to remember is to enjoy the day and have fun!

If you have tips that you would like to share with me pop them in the box below I would love to hear from you!

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