Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Camberwell Markets Round Up

So as you know, last Sunday Lovely and I rented a stall at the Camberwell Sunday Market! We had a lot of fun, and we learnt a lot, but all in all we ended up spending more money there than we actually made. Oops!

Our creations did invite quite a bit of interest, and we did have lots of people stopping by our little table, but not a lot of the interest translated into sales, despite our dropping price points later in the day. Perhaps I need to work on 'closing sales' (bleugh, retail jargon), but I really hate bullying people into buying anything because that is such a huge turn off for me, especially at markets. I want people to want to buy what I'm selling, not to feel like they have to.

However on the whole, the experience was a positive one, it's a great market, and we got to meet some lovely people! And the rush of selling something you've made yourself and knowing that it's out in the world is really wonderful (even if it only happened a few times).

Here are a few things that I learnt from the day, which may come in handy if you're thinking of running your own stall in the not too distant future.

- Know your market! It had been a little while since I had been to Camberwell Market, and in truth I probably should have visited it a little closer to our stall day, because it has gotten HUGE! People really are spoiled for choice there, in terms of variety and pricing.

- Be friendly! Chat to everyone; customers, neighbours, fellow stall holders. Generally people aren't going to try to be sneaky and steal your customers, so there is no harm in being nice! And they will probably be more likely to help you out if your clothes stand happens to blow over!
No one's going to want to approach you if you're all grouchy and complainy about what time you had to get up that morning. Coffee is also defintely a good idea! We were lucky enough to have one of Lovely's work friends bring his family to visit, and he ended up bringing the coffee to us! Hooray! Thanks Claudio :)

- Don't put stuff out that you don't want to be fondeled. I brought my jewellry box to carry my goods and to use as part of my display, and seeing as I had no other place to put all of my jewellry, I thought I would just keep it inside with the lid closed. But before I had even finished setting up, a woman came over, opened it up and just started riffling through it! There was nothing very valuable inside, just costume jewellry and the things I was selling, but still it freaked the crap out of me. I had to physically take it away from her. Yeesh. That's another good point to mention; you get a lot of, how do I put this nicely, 'keen' people, who come extra early looking for a bargain, and they will harass you before you've even set up your stall so they can suss out what you're buying. Some might say they're being industrious, but I just think thats creepy, and a little rude.

- Don't give up! We didn't sell anything for the first couple of hours, but I think that's because the people who come out at 7am on a Sunday morning aren't looking for something pretty, interesting or well made; they're looking for a trash and treasure style bargain! We certainly got a lot more interest and sales later on in the day, and the waiting was certainly worth it for that first-sale-feeling!

All in all, Camberwell is a lovely market, but maybe not the right market for us! That doesn't mean either of us are giving up, in fact this has made me even more determined to find our niche! Etsy maybe?

Anyhoo, I will blog about my spectacular Camberwell market finds a little later in the week, but here are some photos I took on the day. The lighting isn't fabulous because it was so sunny (I think some of the best ones were the ones I took on instagram), but you get the idea!

 This stall was really cool; the table was full of old photographs from the 1900s

How cool is this?! This caravan belongs to the awesome Trish Hunter Finds! I love that she carts around her gorgeous vintage wares in this converted Franklin Caravan, everything has such an authentic retro feel!

This kid was playing a Tallest Man on Earth cover on his Uke! With that combination I couldn't not give him my change.

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