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Topic: craft fair - need advice  (Read 2646 times)
sdq
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« on: December 23, 2012, 09:20:29 PM »

Hi all,

Have been busy recently. How are you all. Merry Christmas to all.

I need some advice. There is an indoor craft fair at a local library in feb. It would be for 5 days tue - sat. the fees are £11 per day i.e £55 in total. I have to take all 5 is what I have been told. Cant take few. They would provide table 10 feet.

I am new to all this. Does this seem right. I thought I will share this here and get some advice. £55 seem high to me. I dont know whether I would be able to recover.

And secondly do mp soaps sell. cp would not be ready till then.

And today in the market I saw a lady selling soaps. It looked very quiet. The lady said her soaps weren't selling. she had them priced soo reasonably £2.50 then lowered it to £2 and then now to £1.50. Hearing this it all broke my heart. Got me really depressed. Is it really that bad there.
She said she does other fairs and markets and the other soapers are not doing well at all. She said I really need to think before embarking on it.

The only positive side I can look at it is if the soaps dont sell, I would have soap supply for years.
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Mona
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« Reply #1 on: December 23, 2012, 09:24:41 PM »

I have no idea, I'v never done any markets. Sounds bad though, poor woman!!
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Iulia
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« Reply #2 on: December 23, 2012, 09:40:04 PM »

I personally wouldn't take on anything in February that committed you to five days.

£11 a day isn't a bad price, but Feb is a slow month and five days in the same place possibly the earth is not gonna move.

Just my opinion.

(but I wouldn't necessarily worry about the opinion of someone who you would be competition for. Maybe she was nice, but just bear that in mind  :mwaha:
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Alphya
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« Reply #3 on: December 23, 2012, 10:59:02 PM »

I think £55 sounds reasonable.. but doing well depends on how well it's advertised I guess..
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fiddletree
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« Reply #4 on: December 23, 2012, 11:11:55 PM »

That is insanely cheap, especially if they provide the table.  For tiny local markets in tiny out of the way villages with little foot traffic, I've payed up to 40 euros for one day, and have to provide my own table.  But I've always made a profit, as I don't have much in the way of competition.

Will there be other soapers there?  And will there be people attending, ready to spend money?  I'd be more concerned about the loss in time than money, since it doesn't cost much. 
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sdq
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« Reply #5 on: December 23, 2012, 11:32:13 PM »

Hi all,

Thanks for your responses.

No there is no competition because this lady just wants one kind of trade there. No 2 people doing the same thing. Its based at a local library at the entrance.

I was trying to make a recipe for CP soap. First I used to follow recipes. Now have to go by whats specified in assesment. And am stuck in calculating 2% of  total concentration for FO.
As to Total concentration. Is it -
total oils. x 2%
total oils +liquid+ lye then multiplying it by x 2%

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Iulia
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« Reply #6 on: December 23, 2012, 11:39:07 PM »

Can I suggest in the nicest possible way  Grin that if you are still struggling with details like this, put a hold on selling for a bit.

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fiddletree
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« Reply #7 on: December 24, 2012, 12:20:22 AM »

Iulia has a point... if you've never made CP before, it's generally best to wait at least a year or so before selling it, as a number of things can go wrong (lye heavy if you aren't careful, can develop DOS, etc).  It's best to start after you have everything ready because if something isn't quite 'right', it can damage your reputation from the start! 

That said, good luck with whatever decision you make Smiley
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sdq
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« Reply #8 on: December 24, 2012, 12:30:36 AM »

Hi

Thanks for your replies.

I have made cp and hp soaps before. I have even tried using my own combination of oils and ingredients. But now to be safe I was checking according to the requirements. Esp the fragrace and botanicals.  I could add the lower of the 2 comp. but wanted to add max fragrance allowed in some soaps.

I appreciate your straightforward approach. Its all these rules I need to get used to. Maybe you are right I need time to get settled - get my PIF, labelling and stock ready before selling.

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retropants
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« Reply #9 on: December 24, 2012, 12:06:11 PM »

Also, just checking, you do have an SA?

I am not marketing until March. I did my last one yesterday, so January doing bugger all, and Feb restocking for March.

£55 for 5 days is indeed insanely cheap! I wish you the best with whatever you decide to do, but I wouldn't start a new recipe for that soon, I would use one you have tried and tested.  :buttrf:
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Tanya
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« Reply #10 on: December 24, 2012, 12:33:42 PM »

I would also agree to hold off a wee while before selling. If you are not 100% confident that your soaps etc are not to the highest standard and worrying if you have done x & y properly well then that sort of 'lack of confidence' will be felt by the customer - it is hard at the moment but if you really are passionate about this then you will sell. You also have to push sales now - well that is what I found from my craft fairs so far. You cannot just sit there an expect people to walk up and buy from you. Not nowadays!!
That table price is excellent - I have been at fairs too that cost €40 per day with no table and with other soapers!! If you feel that you can sell the  M&P soap well go ahead and try it out. But you must keep in mind that Feb is going to be probably one of the slowest months. Another thing - yes listen to other peoples advice etc but don't listen to 'don't embark on this' kind of thing!! If you want to sell soap - then sell soap - let nothing stand in your way. But everyone who sells soap here will tell you it is not an 'easy' job!! The amount of work you put in buying ingredients, making the soap, curing the soap, making labels for the soap, allergen calculations, packaging the soap, making and updating websites, FB, PIF's and then the selling which is a whole other job in itself, well no money could ever pay you for the work you will put in. But it is about a love for the making of soap that keeps me going. If you make enough at the beginning to buy more ingredients to make more soap well that's excellent - that is what it is all about.  Grin Yes money can be made from it - but it is going to take a whole lot of time.
Make soap because you love it - sell it because you need money to make more!
My SA btw says 3% - is your SA with Scott??
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fireweed
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« Reply #11 on: December 24, 2012, 01:14:00 PM »

Tanya, that is such a wonderful reply!  I also think there will be those who say "don't bother" in any industry, soaping as well. 

I too, have a 3% FO limit...
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sdq
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« Reply #12 on: December 24, 2012, 02:25:18 PM »

Hi

Oh Thankyou for your replies and support. Esp when you all must be super busy. Thanks.  Smiley

yes my FO is 3%. I wanted to check whether its on total oils or oils +lye + liquid. Well nobody has answered that yet.  Huh?

You are right Tanya.  I thought about that till late night is why do I really want to do it. Its because I enjoy and love. Its not to make money instantly. But yes I do want to recover my investment/costs to keep me going. And secondly is to try to reach those people who would like to use natural soaps - people with skin conditions. I have a few friends who like it and use just my soap.


« Last Edit: December 24, 2012, 02:46:04 PM by sdq » Logged
Mona
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« Reply #13 on: December 28, 2012, 06:49:52 PM »

Hi,
 It is 3% of the totals eg, oil + lye + H20 weight. But be sure to adhere to the stated % of the restricted Essential Oils like Clove, Cinnamon, Rose etc - it will state their limits on your SA  Smiley Good luck and enjoy your new venture!
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sdq
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« Reply #14 on: December 28, 2012, 07:44:38 PM »

Thankyou Mona, :buttrf: big hug  :buttrf: I have use much less than that maybe a 1/4 and it smells great.

When I couldnt figure out what it would be I took the lesser of the 2 to be on the safe side.

You know when you make things for yourself you can play around with things. Not lye ratio definitely. but other ingredients like colour, fragrance and botanicals. Just realised doesnt say natural colours on my SA. I would need to get turmeric added, since its a healer. but not a big problem since micas colour well. I have started thinking out of the box, things others would like, not me. I like natural stuff.

Now I am looking for good fragrance oils. I used up my bottle of lavender and orange blossom. Most of the shops like GF, SP are closed and their stock is low.  Huh?
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