Lets continue on our ‘Getting Ready to Market’ series.
You will need to invest in a few bits and pieces before you start selling at a market. Some of these items you will be able to beg, steal, borrow, make do or buy on the cheap. The very first item is one that I don’t recommend skimping on, buy the very best quality that you can afford.
1. Marquee/ tent. If you are doing an outside market you are going to need to a cover. A barbeque umbrella might be sufficient on a fine day but eventually you are going to get a day when there a showers. Buy an marquee with attachable sides, rain never comes straight down. Also make sure you have weights for the marquee legs. It doesn’t take much of a breeze to up end a marquee without weights.
2. Tables.Some indoor markets provide tables at a cost. There is often limited choices in sizes. The best bet is to provide your own. Here is a Lesson I’ve Learnt. Smaller tables about the size of card tables give you more options for setting up your display. They are also lighter. This may be important to you especially if you are setting up on your own. Don’t forget somewhere to sit.
3. Display equipment. Depending on your product you may need racks, jewellery busts, risers, baskets, stands, hooks and the list goes on. I find these items take more space in the car than the stock and they rarely pack into a box. I try to use packaging equipment that carried stock as my risers. Saves on extra equipment and finding somewhere to store the boxes during the market.
4. Table covers. Most markets state that you have floor length covers for your table. This is great as you can store extra stock and boxes under the table out of sight. The colour of the cloths may also be dictated by the market. I prefer either cream or black as it provides a neutral backdrop for my colourful items. I started using cream calico for no other reason than they were the original curtains I made for our house. I now prefer black as it gets less dirty.
5. Miscellaneous. we always have 2 assorted boxes for those just in case moments. the first box has basic tools that we have found useful over the years. they include screwdrivers (flat head & Philips), cable ties, pliers, hooks, clips, scissors. This box seems to get larger every time we do a market. the second box is a stationary box. It includes blue tack, rubber bands, stickers, pens, notebooks, paper, card.
6. Cash Tin & Float. You will need to take money to be used as your float. You will also need your site fee( if not pre-paid). Do not rely on selling to cover your site fee. take that amount separately. With all this money floating around you will need somewhere to store it safely. You may not need to purchase a lockable cash tin, you may prefer to use a bum bag etc. Just keep it safe.
7. Personal items. Hat, sunscreen, comfy shoes, comfy clothes, sunglasses ,wet weather gear.
8. Trolley. Not necessary but nice to have. Saves your legs and backs. Collapsible, sturdy and lightweight ones are available.
Next week we will talk about your very first day.