Behind the Crafter’s Booth: A Reflection on Being a First-Time Vendor

craft-fair-bannerOne thing that goes hand-in-hand with the holiday season is craft fairs. This year, for the first time ever, I signed up to be a vendor at a local craft fair: the 32nd annual Dover Parents Music Club Holiday Craft Fair.

behind-the-booth

Spoiler alert: It was quite an opportunity…a LEARNING opportunity.

To be honest, I wasn’t entirely sure what to expect. I just knew that instead of being someone who strolls by booths, I was going to be the person in charge of one (and obviously the crafter of my booth’s goodies).

In terms of setting up, there were two options: you could either set up the night before or come in early the morning of the event. I took advantage of both times because I was anxious. There were over 100 vendors scheduled to participate and there I was on Friday evening freaking out about my flimsy tablecloth (pictured on the left). But by Saturday morning, as you can see below, I was able to procure a tablecloth and make my booth look appealing:

table-at-craft-fair

As a whole, the craft fair was wonderful – the organizers did a solid job making sure each vendor had what they needed, volunteers were attentive, and I was blown away by the talent and creativity of my fellow vendors.

There is one major lesson I learned from the craft fair and it has nothing to do with the externalities. It was something internal. As I reflected on this event, I realized I was too hard on myself.  Instead of giving myself credit for putting myself out there, I was constantly comparing myself to other vendors who had YEARS of experience.

Furthermore, as a young person living in the Granite State, something tells me I am not the only person who may be too hard on myself when it comes to taking advantage of new opportunities. Although it’s impossible to have a do-over at the Dover craft fair, it IS possible to share what I learned: Stop worrying about being good enough and start giving yourself credit.

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