Hi there, my name is Katy and I make hand embroidered text art. I’ve just finished my first outing as a Folksy ambassador at the Trafford’s Taste of Christmas craft event on Sunday 9th December at Altrincham in Cheshire. It was my first outdoor craft fair, and dressed for an Arctic expedition, and armed with a flask (of tea) and sweeties, I was ready for all eventualities.
The craft market was tucked behind the main food market and there was a steady stream of traffic, although quite a few people had stumbled across the market by accident. Everyone seemed genuinely interested in supporting small makers, and were very enthusiastic and friendly.
I rather embraced my role as Ambassador, and started out by giving all of the stall holders a little introduction to Folksy and telling them what I liked about it. I found that almost all of them had heard of it, but no one had signed up yet.
Once the drizzle stopped (conveniently just as the fair opened), things got off to a good start and I sold my favourite piece almost immediately.
Next, I turned my ambassadorial attentions to the shoppers; I may have got a little over- excited handing out my leaflets and practically chased a group of likely looking shoppers in my enthusiasm! (They were very understanding…)
Everyone I spoke to seemed very interested in investigating Folksy, from harassed parents wanting to do a bit of browsing in peace, to people considering trying to set up their own craft businesses. Each Friday on my blog I’ve been showcasing a British craftsperson as a Friday Find, so I could give examples of work from fascinators to furniture which could be found on Folksy.
I ended up on the stall next to Suzy and Katie of The Knotted Flower and their lovely hand embroidered housewares and art. It seems that french knots attract, I kept finding myself hovering over their stand looking wistfully at natural linen cushions that would be helpless against the twin scourges of cat and toddler in my house.
Although it was a little chilly, we were kept warm by a covers band with a truly astonishing repertoire (Amy Winehouse, REM, Johnny Cash and more)!
Crafting can sometimes be a solitary occupation, so it’s nice to go out and interact with other crafters and shoppers to see what they like and how they view my work. I met some lovely people, from the gentleman who did large scale tapestries (his best work was a full length nude, but his wife wasn’t keen on his showing it to many people!) to the lady who said that she could feel the love in each stitch, the personal interactions make all the difference at a fair. It obviously paid off, as I had to turn away some custom orders for Christmas, which always breaks my heart (but better my heart broken than a customers’).
I really enjoyed the event, especially the people (and animals) I met, and I’m definitely looking forward to my next Altrincham craft fair!
Thanks to Katy for embracing her role as Folksy Ambassador with such passion You can see more of her work in her Folksy shop.