For the past 6 months or so, I have been tossing the idea around in my head of hosting workshops. Either informational classes on herbs and incorporating them into your life or DIY classes on how to make something. I thought that it would be fun to get out into my community and share my knowledge and skills with others.
Fast forward to 2017. After meeting with the owner of Conflicted Pixie, the idea of hosting a workshop came up again. As the weeks passed, we began to set up a tentative plan.
I’m pleased to say that our tentative plan has evolved into something concrete!
Though the turnout for some of the other events hosted at CP hasn’t been high, I’m optimistic and have already written out my list of supplies that I will need to bring for the workshop. To be honest, my need to go ahead and write that out was spurred by an early morning, half-conscious nightmare where I showed up and realized that I was missing half of my supplies! Not being prepared is more terrifying to me than dreaming that I was naked teaching it.
Interested in registering? Check out the Conflicted Pixie website!
Whew. I am glad that this weekend is over with! I had a show Friday evening (after working at my regular job all day), then a show on Saturday and Sunday. This weekend flew by faster than I would have liked. I have this upcoming weekend off from any shows, but after that, it is a show every Saturday for the next 4 weeks!
As someone who makes all of her own products, I am sometimes conflicted with a bit of self-doubt. I stand by my products. I know they are good, but sometimes, especially when I’m doing shows, I worry. I have quite a few journal entries that I have written during the first 30 minutes of a show, when panic grips at my chest. What if nobody buys my items? What if nobody even stops at my booth? What if they wrinkle their nose up at everything I have? I’ve had quite a few years of experience in retail. I know that not everybody will like everything you have, but I’ve also learned that sometimes you can still make a sale but recommending a different product. That sometimes people buy from you just because you are cheerful and welcoming. That sometimes, your smile is the only thing that gets people through the day.
So it’s okay to doubt yourself sometimes, especially when you are a small business owner. Just don’t let those doubts keep you from achieving your goals. Even more so, don’t let a bad start to a day (or an event) sour your spirit for the rest of the day. Fake it ’til you make it – you never know who may surprise you and buy your products.
That all being said, as soon as I wrote down my self-doubts on Saturday morning, I made two sales in less than 60 seconds at the Camden Women’s Club Holly Days event. Though I had my slow moments, this events was my most successful one yet. I even sold out of a few products (and had to spend Saturday night creating fresh batches). This was my first year at Holly Days. From what I had heard, every year it fills up with vendors quickly.
I really hope that I am able to be in this event next year. It wasn’t just the sales – the whole event was nice. Breakfast was provided for vendors on Saturday (a delicious breakfast, by the way) and volunteers would stop by to see if we needed bathroom breaks. Lunch was done by a local church and the food was delicious and at a great price. What is even better is that I had quite a few repeat customers, i.e. customers that purchased my products at events last year and eagerly bought more!
Friday night, I did the Girls Night Out event at The Pines (a local country club). I would do this event again. Heavy hors d’oeuvre were served and there was a cash bar. The women that came stayed for the duration of the event (there were giveaways) and were eager to stay at my booth and talk about my products for 5-10 minutes. That was nice and something that I don’t usually have at larger shows. My sales were pretty good for it being such a short event (2.5 hours) but I think the connections I made are even more important.
My summer events have been few and far between. I anticipated being at my area farmer’s markets all summer, but with it being so hot this summer – both my products and myself were struggling.
I briefly wrote about Scares That Care Weekend a few months back and have been looking forward to attending for months now. Mixed in with that anticipation was a hint of terror. This was my biggest show to date – 3 days! I was a little nervous as to how my products would be received. I did okay at Tidewater Comicon, but not awesome. However, I did awesome at STC! People loved my products, even though they weren’t exactly horror related. My table location was down in the author’s area, which was a little weird, but I don’t think my sales suffered any.
So what is Scares That Care? From their website:
“Scares That Care!” Inc., is an IRS approved, 501(c)(3) charity. Founded in 2006, “Scares That Care!” to date has raised and donated over $100,000 to organizations that treat sick children and families with a child affected by illness, burns or women fighting breast cancer. “Scares That Care!” is also proud of the fact that we are an all volunteer organization, with no salaries or paychecks issued to any staff member involved with the charity. If you’d like more information, please visit our home website scaresthatcare.org
I loved going to this event. Though working pretty much 3 days straight (and dealing with that traffic coming/going) did wear me out – I had a blast! Conventions that take place completely in a hotel are my favorite. It is like you are in your own little world surrounded by friends and family (even if you’ve never met any of them before).
It’s pretty awesome when you go to an event and have people that you recognize from television and movies come look at your stuff. Or when you go to the bar or to eat and be able to have a conversation with those same guests.
I did well enough at this event that when tables for the 2017 event became available last night – I went on and booked mine. Yes, the first floor tables are a bit more expensive, but I think it is worth it. I’m curious as to how much traffic the vendors on the second floor really received.
I made some notes and have already thought of ways to expand and enhance my booth. Plus, I’ve started brainstorming lots of interesting new ideas for products. My goal, for next year, is to double my sales from this year!
So next year, make sure to stop by and see me.
Scares That Care Charity Weekend 4 will be held July 20-23rd 2017.
Great news! I was able to work my way into a last minute holiday show. If you are out and about tomorrow to support Small Business Saturday, shop local and come see me at the Albemarle School Home for the Holidays Vendor Sale from 9-3. Admission is $2, or free for students/those over 60 years of age.
Looking for a great holiday gift for the special people in your life that won’t break the bank? Or maybe you deserve a little pampering of your own during this busy holiday season. Either way – my Holiday Herbal Gift Set is for you!
This gift set contains some of my favorite products and best-selling items.
· 1 – 3 oz. jar of Peppermint Foot Cream (great for tired feet after standing on them all day) – shea butter, cocoa butter, mango butter, coconut oil, beeswax, essential oils
· 1 – 3 oz. jar of Herbal Foot Soak – sodium bicarbonate, sea salt, colloidal oatmeal, lavender, chamomile, marshmallow root, rose petals
· 1 – 2 oz. tin of my best-selling Lavender and Calendula Hand Salve (perfect for dry winter hands) – beeswax, olive oil, sweet almond oil, kukui nut oil, coconut oil, calendula, lavender, essential oils.