Organising a craft fair

edited 30 November -1 at 1:00AM in Small Biz & Charities' MoneySaving
7 replies 3.7K views
Elizabeth2006Elizabeth2006 Forumite
5 Posts
I'm getting together with a small group of other sellers to organise our own event - we'll have craft stalls and local businesses. We're hoping to make a small profit which we will use to advertise and fund future events. Does anyone have any experience of this in terms of taxation?

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  • SilvertabbySilvertabby Forumite
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    Can't help with your tax enquiry, I'm afraid, but don't forget about public liability insurance, pat testing of portable electric devices, health and safety, fire regs, etc, etc. I'd have thought taxation would have been the least of your worries!
  • Robin9Robin9 Forumite
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    My local Church Hall includes Public Liability in its hire and has PAT tested leads.
    Never pay on an estimated bill
  • Savvy_SueSavvy_Sue Forumite
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    Robin9 wrote: »
    My local Church Hall includes Public Liability in its hire and has PAT tested leads.
    Yes, but are they happy for you to plug in other items?

    I think if you search this board you'll find someone else who's done something very similar.

    I'd say publicity is going to be a challenge: you have to get the date out there, in as many different ways as possible, and in a way that makes people think "oh yes I'd like to go to that!" All your stall holders need to get the word out to, to all their friends and relations, friends of friends and relations, friends and relations of neighbours, children, pets ...
    Still knitting!
    Completed: TWO adult cardigans, 3 baby jumpers, 3 shawls, 1 sweat band, 3 pairs baby bootees, 2 sets of handwarmers, 1 Wise Man Knitivity figure + 1 sheep, 2 pairs socks, 3 balaclavas, multiple hats and poppies, 3 peony flowers, 4 butterflies ...
    Current projects: pink balaclava (for myself), seaman's hat, about to start another cardigan!
  • Jo_FJo_F Forumite
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    your stall holders also have to have their own insurance and PAT testing if they are using anything electrical
  • I organise craft fairs and I have been doing it for 3 years. You'll have to have event organisers insurance covered up to whatever the hall stipulate but I wouldn't recommend anything under 10 million. You'll have to advertise it as if your life depends on it otherwise people won't come. There's so many other craft fairs going on that you will need a usp. A free gift for anyone who comes or something like that. I buy a box of 50 wooden roses which are quite cheap and hand them out. Don't charge people to go in otherwise they won't buy when they get in there. Be strict on table sizes. If your telling them their table shouldn't be anything less than 6ft make sure they stick to it. A lot of crafters like to push it by bringing an extra stool to put things on or an easel to hang things on. Fine if your thin on bookings and want to make the hall look full but if your fully booked make sure they stick to their 6ft and take a tape measure. Be prepared for the one or to crafters who don't sell anything and want to blame you. Even if the person on the table next to them has sold loads they will still say it's your fault they didn't sell anything. It's usually because their items are rubbish or because they've priced them too high or because they've sat behind their table staring at theit phone all day. Also get rid of any thoughts that crafters are all happy hippy go lucky people. A few of them are nice but apart from that I've never met such a bunch of snidey two faced spiteful vindictive people in my life. I've organised about 70 fairs in 3 years and organised them for other organisations and I've only had 5 where I haven't had a nasty message from at least one stall holder afterwards. And I've had a few who have ended up being quite threatening and I've feared for my safety and who have tried to shut my whole business down. I've even had a couple of death threats and had to get the police involved! It's definitely not for the feint hearted. Hope I haven't put you off. Just telling it like it is.
  • lincroft1710lincroft1710 Forumite
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    Be prepared for the one or to crafters who don't sell anything and want to blame you. Even if the person on the table next to them has sold loads they will still say it's your fault they didn't sell anything. It's usually because their items are rubbish or because they've priced them too high or because they've sat behind their table staring at theit phone all day. Also get rid of any thoughts that crafters are all happy hippy go lucky people. A few of them are nice but apart from that I've never met such a bunch of snidey two faced spiteful vindictive people in my life. I've organised about 70 fairs in 3 years and organised them for other organisations and I've only had 5 where I haven't had a nasty message from at least one stall holder afterwards. And I've had a few who have ended up being quite threatening and I've feared for my safety and who have tried to shut my whole business down. I've even had a couple of death threats and had to get the police involved! It's definitely not for the feint hearted. Hope I haven't put you off. Just telling it like it is.

    Are these unprofessional psychopaths of both genders?

    I presume that they are the ones who are trying to sell rubbish.
  • Are these unprofessional psychopaths of both genders?

    I presume that they are the ones who are trying to sell rubbish.

    Mostly women but I have had one threatening message from a man. Yes most of the time the one selling rubbish is the one threatening afterwards. Usually I can look round a craft fair and instantly know as soon as they start setting up which ones won't sell and which ones I'm going to get a nasty message from.
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