9 Great Craft Show Layout Designs

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The first time I designed a booth in a craft show it was awful, it didn’t match and I had the worst location.  The next year I reviewed my booth design and made some major changes.  Having the correct setup and design for your location leads to better sales.

But first you will have to do your homework. You have about 3 seconds for potential customers to pass judgement about your booth.  You better make it look good enough from them to stop. Think of your display as a huge billboard on a highway—would you stop?

  • Use color to make them notice
  • Use scent to make them stop
  • Use your friendly smile and good conversation to make them stop
  • If you don’t have lighting bring some.
  • Don’t forget your banners

A way to ensure your space is workable for you and comfortable for your customer is to understand booth layout.  There are many ways to set up your space but I narrowed it down to nine.

STRAIGHT LINE 

straight1

You will want to add height to this booth design because space is limited

 

GALLEY STYLE

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L SHAPED DESIGN

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INVERTED “L” DESIGNreversed-l1

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

U SHAPED DESIGN

u-shaped1

INVERTED “U” DESIGNinvertedu1
OPEN “T” DESIGN    

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OPEN “T” WITH “L” DESIGN

open-l1

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

MIXED DESIGN

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Hope this helps you as much as it has helped me.  Don’t forget we have a business workshop coming up this month September 24 & 25 2016 to help you get started with your own business!

To find out more check us out here: Soapmaking Weekend Workshop or if you only need help with the business side of it– Join us for our exclusive Business Only Portion on September 25!

Why You Should Be Interested In Starting Your Own Business

Make things happen

Follow your passion, create your own destiny, work with the people you want and make your own hours!  Doesn’t this all sound appealing?  If you already have a skill you can always do consulting or hire yourself out as an independent contractor to those needing your services.

But what if you don’t?  Then you need to produce something of value that others want to purchase.  I started off in direct sales and it gave me the fundamental building blocks to create my own business.  With a direct sales company you can become an independent contractor selling their products, telling their story and using their marketing material.  In most cases it’s pretty easy to get started, you purchase their kit and call all your friends to have a party.  Notice how I put the emphasis on “THEIR”?  You will be selling THEIR company to YOUR friends.  You will usually receive about 25% of the profits but you are required to purchase their monthly special items to demo at your parties which eats up most of “YOUR” profit.

The opportunities to start your own business are limitless.  You can start a business on a shoestring budget and make good money to support your and your family.  To become an ENTREPRENEUR you will need to be able to work independently and motivate yourself, set goals to achieving success and be passionate about what you do. Be organized, have a strong desire to create and not afraid of failure.

Every month about 1 million people are going through a job loss, changing  their careers or adding a second job.  If you are  relying on your income to pay the bills you can still start-up your own company NOW.  That way when it becomes profitable you can quit your day job and work FULL TIME in your own business.  I see it all the time.  It took me about 1 year before I was able to quit my day job and work full-time in my own business. You can do it and I can help you pave the way to success!

The annual gross sales of 250,000 soap making business range from $5,000- 10 Million. Many  are second businesses but some are FULL TIME successes.  You will need to work hard and  have your eye on the prize.  If you are ready to put in the hard work and reap the benefits of your business join us for our next Weekend Fast Track Soapmaking Business Workshop on September 20-21, 2014.

Learn everything you ever wanted to know about soap! We will teach you how to make the soap and how to get into business branding it, packaging it and selling it!! Don’t miss this fabulous class and start your own business selling soap today!

pinkswirl2a (800x533)

Fast Track Soapmaking Business Workshop

Learn simple techniques to making soap and having a product you can sell while you learn about the ins & outs of starting up your own company. Learn how to have your own website at a fraction of the cost of traditional methods, build a product that will sell in your market, tips on photographing your product to sell online, craft show displays, unique ways to package your new soap and a special demonstration on how to use the SOAPMAKER PROGRAM. Receive superior classroom instruction with hands on soapmaking from Michelle Rhoades, a certified soapmaker with the Handcrafted Soap and Cosmetic Guild.

Day 1-

Learn everything you ever wanted to know about soapmaking. We discuss all the methods and give you step by step instruction on how to make cold processed soap. Learn from a certified experienced soapmaker who will walk you through the chemistry behind the soapmaking so you will fully understand soapmaking from the oils to the cured soap.

  • Step by step directions
  • Safety Equipment List and Procedures
  • Soapmaking Oil Properties
  • Additives, Essential Oils, Fragrances
  • Using natural herbs, flowers, powders
  • Step by step directions to swirling and working with color
  • How to come up with a color scheme, which colors to use and how to swirl like a pro
  • Recipe Formulation
  • Soapmaking supplier information
  • Terms & Definitions in Soapmaking
  • Receive our Comprehensive Soapmaking handbook with Recipes to help you get started.

BONUS- Learn the easy way how to make milk & fruit soaps. We will teach you how to make a creamy milk soap and a wonderful fruit soap using a simple fluid replacement method. Receive our tested recipes and  a booklet with step by step directions necessary for successful milk & fruit soapmaking.

Day 2-

We will begin promptly at 10am on Sunday morning with how to start your own bath and body Business workshop.  Find out what supplies you need for Soapmaking, how to effectively sell your new soap, tips on how to get started selling online, how to start up on a shoestring budget and start making money right away, find out where to get your supplies, where to sell your soap and Do’s and Don’ts for Craft Shows.

Don’t miss this informative class~We will share with you the tools needed to help you succeed in your new business.

  • Give you the edge you need to stand out front in the crowd
  • Build your own brand recognition through package design and product presentation.
  • Streamline your startup cost with cost saving methods
  • Learn how you can start up on a shoe string budget and be successful.
  • Learn how to take fabulous photos without the use of an expensive photographer
  • Create a booth design that will stand out of the crowd
  • Wholesaling, Consignments and more…

You will go home with an arm load of fresh soap that we made in class, soapmaking booklet (soapmaking recipes, charts, step by step directions to help you get started once you get home) and information on all my trusted suppliers!

 SIGN UP HERE.. BEFORE AUGUST 31st to SAVE $75.00

 

 

OPENING A SOAPMAKING RETAIL SHOP Part 3

Questions to ask your self  BEFORE you get into the RETAIL business

Dreaming Big in the Retail Soapmaking Business

Dreaming Big in the Retail Soapmaking Business

Welcome to part 3 of the Opening a Retail Soapmaking Shop-

So this brings to me to the HARD QUESTIONS that you  need to ask yourself before you get into the RETAIL business.

Are you using the “DREAM” of owning a retail shop to cloud your judgment?  We’ve all been here before— that’s why we got into business in the first place.  We were all dreaming of owning a cool bath and body business like “XZY” down the street and dreamed of how happy you would be once you had it.  But don’t get sold on the “IDEA” of having business, do you research and find out what the day-to-day operations will be like.  It is HARD work and involves a lot of time.

Can you afford it? Do you have enough income to cover overhead just in case?   I had a backup plan that included sales from difference resources just in case I didn’t have  sales for that month. You will need enough to include your rent/lease/utilities/maintenance expenses. Money is scarce and it’s tough getting business credit. Credit cards helped me getting started with the basic start-up costs involved with opening a retail shop. Most of my income coming in my business got rolled back into the business for a few years.  A portion of it continues to get rolled back into the business today.

A few tips: In the beginning a landline phone is not necessary, you don’t need an  internet connection in your new place either or  pay for regularly scheduled picks from UPS and FEDEX.  Save those for later on when your business is established and making money.  Use the “Square”  for all your credit card transactions and your business cell phone as your regular line.

Do you have unlimited time to invest in your retail shop?  Post your  hours and  be present/open during those times.

Competition-  This should be included in your feasibility studies and it will give you a good opportunity to scout out the competition.  I would inquire discreetly how well they are doing. You could learn from them and adjust your ideas before you get started. You could also ask your small business rep to see if they know them; maybe they could give you insight on what to expect.

Conduct your own market feasibility study to see if your idea will be supported in your community.  {A feasibility study evaluates your project’s potential for success as it examines the marketability of your product}

Your SBA office should be able to help you gather the data to support it. Find out if your “DREAM” idea will bring in the money or send you into financial ruin.

Links for you to check out!

What Is Product Marketability?

31 Days to Build a Creative Business

 

OPENING A SOAPMAKING RETAIL SHOP Part 1

OPENING A RETAIL SHOP  ON A SHOESTRING BUDGET

thedream

Day DREAMING about a BUSINESS? START HERE ——>

Most businesses run out of money the first year in business because of bad planning and choices. Most people get caught up in the dream of having a business and realized too late in the game that their planning was not funded well enough. In the next few weeks I will be sharing with you my tips for starting up a business on a shoestring budget.  I will be sharing some easy to implement ideas to saving money during your first years in business. Get the word out without paying a dime, learn about unconventional ideas that lead to more sales and customers.

Businesses are as different from each other as they are to the personalities of their owners.  The are… after all… our babies.  From the business idea, conception, growth, to established and finally the exit.  You can view your business like a growing child into adulthood and then the exit or death of  a business– (infant, toddler, teenager, adult hood, maturity and finally the exit).

If you have dreamed of having a retail bath and body retail shop this is for you. So today, I am going to try to help you decipher the why, what and how.  But mostly how I got started.

My early career started in direct sales with a well-known company who sold bath and body products through retail mall store fronts.  They had a separate “At Home” division in which I brought their products to the living rooms of a few of my closest friends and family.  I fell right into their branding, followed their program to the “T” and I was successful.

After about two years into selling, the company decided to closed their “At Home” division .  I was then left with customers and NO product. That was when I decided to open my own business and soap seemed to be the next best thing. After discussing it over with my family, we decided to become entrepreneurs.

My husband  and I began the process of  making soap, while learning how to brand it and build a company selling it.  It took me a while before I felt comfortable with product manufacturing but through time and testing we preserved.

After my first year in business I needed to get my operation out of my home so I started looking into opening a studio.  I found a location in a small shopping center within a residential area that offered a month to month lease that included all utilities. That way if I could afford to pay for it if the money was not coming in . Without losing my shirt!

soapmaking classes

Mossy Creek Soap Studio in Warner Robins Georigia 2010-2012

This was my first studio. Rent was cheap, it was month-month and it included all utilities. But was NOT in a busy area.

Things did not happen they way I expected it to. Most people believe all you have to do is open a business and your customers will be rushing in to buy your products. It’s much harder than that otherwise everyone would be sucessful.  Soon after I opened, I discovered that I needed to have more than one revenue stream coming in to keep my doors open everyday.

When I began including different revenue streams and it was then I noticed a difference. Which included maintaining a website, an ETSY  shop and adding more wholesale accounts along with in-house classes. It was then my business began to financially stand on it’s own without my own contributions. Then things finally started coming together.

My methods of getting and staying in business are unconventional; so although these things worked for me;  you will STILL  have to do the foot work to find out what works for you;  in your own backyard.

 

 

STAY TUNED for next installment of this series for TIP #1

 

 

Here are some links to help you get started!

Retail.About.Com

Small Business Admin

And if you want to start your SOAPMAKING BUSINESS our next class is Sept 20-21!  SOAPMAKING BUSINESS WORKSHOP

Pink Grapefruit Body Sugar Cubes

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Recently, we hosted  a girls night out for a bunch of women at the studio.  We had a blast!!

They brought in some wine, a cake and gifts to say farewell to one of their own.  I can honestly say that these ladies were a hoot to hang out with.  I taught them how to make their own sugar scrubs and lip balms.  After class I had some sugar scrub left over so I thought I would try my hands at making solid sugar cubes. I love a good scrub but I was missing the soapy part.  This recipe includes the soap and sugar all in one!  ENJOY!

INGREDIENTS:

  • 2.5oz Natural Goats Milk White Soap Base
  • 2oz. Cocoa Butter
  • 2oz Shea Butter
  • 16oz. White Sugar
  • 2 Tablespoons Avocado Oil
  • ¼ tsp Pink Grapefruit Essential Oil
  • ¼ tsp White Grapefruit Essential Oil
  • ½ tsp of Blue Poppy Seed
  • Pinch of pink mica

EQUIPMENT:

  • (2) Microwave safe glass measuring cups
  • Mixing/measuring spoons
  • Small Silicone Tray Mold
  • Scale
  • Knife

DIRECTIONS:

  1. Weigh and then chop goats milk soap base into 1 inch cubes, place in microwave safe container cover with plastic wrap.
  2. In separate container, melt cocoa butter and then add shea butter, let cocoa butter melt shea butter. Add Avocado Oil with a pinch of mica and essential oils mix well.
  3. Microwave soap base until melted 1 min, stir and continue in short increments until completely melted.
  4. Add melted soap into oils mixture, quickly stir in sugar.
  5. Pack into silicone tray mold then place in the refrigerator until solidified.
  6. After solidified, pop out of mold, Cut into Cubes— enjoy!