The tone of the day was set from the start, when I arrived at a three-storey building shrouded in trees and found the "front entrance" locked. (The real entrance was on the side.)
Combined with the fact that the fair wasn't advertised to the public -- as I found out less than a week before -- because we were meant to sell to the EMPLOYEES IN THE BUILDING (plus some of their friends if they spread the word modestly) WHEN THEY CAME DOWNSTAIRS DURING BREAKS... all the vendors should've had modest expectations at best!
All the vendors except the ones selling kitchenware and coffee, of course!...
While the event was advertised (to employees, and only a few days in advance, due to delays) as a CRAFT fair, fewer than 10 of the 25 or so vendors sold crafts. Even fewer made anything themselves, though at least one was doing it for a charitable cause, so I'll let it slide. :P
The two baked goods sellers also did well. But another seller simply had a mountain of shoe boxes and shoes on his table, so he pretty much cancelled the bakers out!
I was pleasantly surprised to be sitting between two other younger vendors, and was disappointed to find that they were not crafters, but volunteers for some free trade organization. One of them did decide he didn't need extra space, however, so instead of half a table, I actually had a full booth yay!
Never mind that I only made enough items to fill half a table :P
I'm happy with how my table looked, at least! The platform I asked Raccoon to make looked fine and worked well. Most of the vendors used dark-coloured coverings, so I didn't even need to worry about having a boring tablecloth! XD
Still, everyone around me complained about how slow it was, and how they at least had more shoppers last year. The fair was set for 10 am to 4 pm, but everyone except the kitchenware seller and one baker had packed up by 3:30...
It was so slow I made this:
With my hand for size reference
During the employees' last coffee break, a very nice lady came by and bought my favourite mint chocolate cupcake ring for her daughter. (Thank you! <3)
Otherwise, I got TONS of "Aww!" (seriously), "So cute! So delicate!", and "You made everything yourself?!" remarks, and even two people who named specific items and said they'd return to purchase at lunch, lol, but that was it.
It was an... interesting... experience for sure, and my table was free, so maybe I'm complaining too much.
But to be fair, bus fare (or gas, for people who drive :P) isn't free. And I did spend a LOT of time preparing for the fair, punching flower-shaped holes in my SUPER-THICK Moo mini-cards for price tags, and packing and unpacking everything.
When the event ended for me at 10-to-4 (even the two aforementioned vendors were packing up), I waited for my friend (an employee who didn't buy anything ;P) to get off work, and then we hiked home to save me bus fare, hahaha... It took almost two hours.
On a positive note, I did make/finish almost 20 items for the fair, so I'll be able to add new things to my Etsy shop for days, yay!