Every year our church hosts a craft fair where many students participate as vendors. Not only is it a wonderful way for kids (and adults!) to use their creative skills in making something, they are also learning entrepreneurship. The vendors donate some of their profits as well, so the craft fair is a supporting a carefully chosen ministry or charity. Furthermore, the items being sold at the holiday craft fair are perfect Christmas gifts, so shoppers love them! I’m happy to share with you today a step-by-step plan for organizing a Holiday Craft Fair.
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Find a Location
First, you’ll want to choose a location that has a large room where lots of tables can be set up for your holiday craft fair. If there is a kitchen nearby, that’s even better so you can sell food or hot drinks to keep shoppers there even longer.
Find a Date
You’ll hopefully find a date that works for your location during the shopping season of the day after Thanksgiving through about a week before Christmas. Weekend dates are ideal, but evenings will work as well.
First, you’ll need to advertise to find vendors. Then, you’ll need to advertise to get shoppers. Encourage the vendors to invite everyone they know (through social media, email, or even snail mail). Print fliers to put up wherever possible.
Here’s an example, from our Craft Fair this year. If you’re in the area (Gurnee, Illinois), come see us!
On the registration form, be sure to give details about when and where to set up and when clean-up must be completed by. Requiring a deposit (refundable after clean-up is complete and the donation has been made) is a great way to get committed vendors. Let them know exactly what size table they will be receiving (or if they need to bring their own). Also, have them specify exactly what they will be selling so you don’t get duplicate items. Finally, you’ll need to let the vendors know how payments will be made. Do they need to take care of all payments themselves? Will it be “cash only?”
Choose a Ministry or Charity to Support
Each year our church’s craft fair committee chooses a different ministry or charity to support. The vendors contribute 10% of their profits at the end of the day.
Types of “Crafts” to Sell:
There are so many different types of “crafts” that you can encourage vendors to sell.
- Baby items
- Stuffed toys
- Knit or crocheted items
- Handmade soaps, body butters, etc.
- Sewn Items
- Wooden signs
- Decorative items for the home
- Items from companies such as Young Living, Pampered Chef, Usborne, Avon, etc.
- Kits for kids (crafts, school supplies, small toys or games)
- Jarred soup, hot chocolate, or other mixes
- Baked goods (cupcakes, Christmas cookies)
- Frozen meals
Other Special Features of a Successful Craft Fair
Sell lunch so that shoppers don’t go hungry.
Have a group offer to serve by setting up a gift-wrapping station. This is a perfect ministry for the youth group to do at a church craft fair!
Have live musical entertainment throughout the day. This will bring in even more shoppers who want to hear a group perform.
Debrief and Evaluate
It’s important to do a debriefing with the holiday craft fair planning committee and get evaluations from the vendors. If you can get evaluations from some of the shoppers as well, even better. Use all the information to make the next year’s craft fair even better!
What other tips do you have for planning a holiday craft fair? Please share in the comments below.
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