Friday, November 9, 2012

A Surprise Benefit of Selling At Festivals

We recently did a one day festival in Los Olivos, California which is a cute country town up near Solvang.  Great little antique stores and shops and restaurants. Situated in the heart of wine country, Los Olivos is a small town worth visiting -  

We didn't know quite what to expect with the street fair, but we set up our tent and jewelry displays and waited for the event to begin.

There were a few customers, mainly lookers who I call "bebacks," as that is a word one hears a lot from customers "I'll be back."  Anyway, the day started off with a parade of youngsters running and then a parade of jeeps, old tractors, and square dancers.  Colorful and fun.  

The parade didn't last too long and when it was over, we were in the business of being street vendors.  There were lots of people milling about and some came into the booth.  We had a few sales and a lot of lookers.  
As the day wore on, we realized that it would not be a great day for sales.  I think we made expenses - cost of festival, gas, and food - but that is all.  One benefit was that we'd spent the night with my sister Julia and her husband Gary in Buelton which is close to Solvang.  So we'd had a fun visit and here is a picture of them.    

As we were packing up at the end of the day, I was telling Steve that we could just cross "Day in the Country," Festival of Los Olivos off our list when a woman raced into our tent.  She grabbed a sea glass necklace, she'd eyed earlier and asked to try it on.  I helped her and got a mirror for her to look at how nice the necklace looked on her.  She bought the necklace and then turned to me and introduced herself as the director of The Los Olivos Nature Museum.  She explained that soon they would be moving to Solvang where they had acquired a bigger building and she wondered if we'd be interested in showing our jewelry in the museum.  Naturally, I jumped at the chance and we exchanged cards and phone numbers.  

Moments before the woman entered the tent, I had been bemoaning the day and suddenly, we'd made a sale and had the suprise benefit of being asked to be in a museum which was definitely a silver lining to the day.  So don't despair, if you have a slow selling day at a festival, you never know who you will meet and what opportunities lay just around the corner.    

Here are a couple of new pendants that we featured at the festival.  The red sea glass is very rare and it is wrapped in 14kt gold filled wire.

An end of the day piece of sea glass from England wrapped in sterling wire.  Note the tri levels of green.