grandma thunderpants

5

I forgot to do an acknowledgement post for all the wonderful gifts we got after Vader’s passing. From the top:
1. A wonderful bouquet from Melanie, who owns Penny the fox.
2. A bouquet from Amanda of DacaRose Farms, and a personal friend.
3. A fox locket containing images of Vader from rollingdownshadylane.
4. A Vader bracelet crafted by the master zooophagous
5. An adorable Vader and Athena sculpt by grandma-thunderpants.

We also got several pieces of FanArt and about 1,400 messages of condolence. 
I am so, so SOOOOO grateful for everything we received- You all truly showed me that there are wonderful people on the internet. I feel as if I know you all in real life- and if I could, I would give you all a hug!

hydronymphus-blog  asked:

Hello :) I'm preparing for my first convention (as a vendor) and it's starting to make me really nervous. Do you have any advice? I do little clay/resin sculptures like yours, so I thought you might be a good person to ask. Thank you!

If your show isn’t for a few more weeks, I do plan on doing a blog post entirely on this subject. It’ll be a bit more in depth than this one, as this is just a quick bullet point list. :)

  • Make a checklist before you leave! There’s nothing worse than realizing you’ve left something important back home…like I did at ShadoCon by forgetting all my business cards. >.<
  • Bring extras of everything - extra business cards, extra packaging, extra jewelry findings. Better to have to lug a few more things in than run out during the show.
  • Bring glue! You’ll be surprised how much you might end up using it. Also packing tape.
  • Make sure you have a cash box and appropriate change. A locking cash box is what I use. Just use something so your money isn’t in plain sight. Also make sure to bring plenty of change - especially $1’s and $5’s. I usually bring $30-50 in $1’s (depends on the size of the show) and $30 in $5’s.
  • Mark your prices on your pieces. I used to let customers ask if they wanted to know. Turns out, most will walk away if they don’t see a price right away.
  • Bring water and food. Convention food is really pricey. Usually I can spend $40 easily on just two people, and it’s nothing remotely fancy! Water is for staying hydrated throughout the show. Also, when you bring food, don’t bring anything too messy. You’ll more than likely have to make a sale while eating, and you don’t want to leave food residue on your pieces.
  • Invest in hand sanitizer. A lot of it. And vitamins/Airborne. Con crud is the worst type of crud, and it’s always running rampant at big shows. Nothing sucks more than to come home after a long, exhausting weekend, and then spend the next few days completely out of it. Get a big thing of hand sanitizer and abuse it - use it after handling cash, touching people in any way, after using the restroom (yes, even after you’ve washed your hands! You still have to grab the door handle on the way out, and think of how many people have touched that), before you eat, after you eat, touching the table/chairs….basically, be a germaphobe for the weekend and you’ll be fine!
  • Get organized. Buy some plastic tubs/ziplock bags for your stuff. Separate them into groups of how you will display them. This cut my display set up time nearly in half. It also lets you keep a good idea of what your inventory is.
  • Keep a record of your purchases I’m not sure if you have a business license/tax certificate or not, but even then this is a good idea. It will let you know just what your profit really is for the weekend. Did you rent a room? Buy gas? How much was the table? And food? A lot of these can be written off in your taxes, so keep details and receipts on hand for then. If not keep details anyways. You’ll be surprised just how much of what you make was actual profit.
  • Get a card reader. PayPal or Square both work great - just make sure you have cellphone/internet service. I find people will buy more when they don’t have to use cash. You will have to pay a percentage of these sales to those companies, so factor that into your prices.
  • Find a way to record your sales. Super, super important if you have to file your sales tax as a business. Don’t report the right amounts? You might be in hot water at some point. If you don’t, it’s a good idea because you’ll see how much you’re making per day, what’s selling well, and what the price range of the show is - all invaluable information for the next time you do go back.
  • Get a booth buddy. I know not everyone can have a booth buddy for each show, but I find this to be really important. Even if they can’t be there all the time, at least have someone you can call on to watch your table for bathroom breaks. I rely on my husband for this. grandma-thunderpants will also watch my table for me in a pinch (when bribed by candy :P). The more shows you go to, the more artists you will befriend and the easier this gets.
  • Always, always pay attention to your goods. Theft is a pretty big issue at conventions. It’s easy to take advantage of an overwhelmed seller (this is also another giant plus for a booth buddy - two sets of eyes is better than one!). Don’t let someone distract you when there’s a group of people at your table. Handle sales quickly (and still professionally!) while keeping an eye on all your other merchandise. If you do catch someone stealing and they take off do not run after them! Get a description to con security and they will handle it.

I think that’s a pretty good start. If anyone wants to add anything, go for it! Like I said, I’ll have a better blog post on this later. :)

Oh yes, the most important note - have fun! Take time to look at the other artist tables. Talk to your neighboring booths. It doesn’t have to be just work all weekend. Good luck! :D