Festival in the Park, Part One

We're back from Charlotte, where we had a good show overall. 'Still trying to regroup (it seems to take longer and longer after each show!) but here's the report:

1. 4 days vs. 2 days: As one of my neighbor artists said, Festival in the Park was a good 2-day show. This sounds great, except that it was a 4-day show. It ran from 6pm to 10 pm on Thursday, noon to 10 pm on Friday, 10am to 10pm on Saturday, and 10am to 6pm on Sunday. For me, and for everyone with whom I spoke, the best sales days were Saturday and Sunday. They've been doing it this way for 43 years, so it's unlikely to change. But, for the artists, the time spent not selling (and on Friday, watching hundreds of school kids go by--or come into their booths--eeek!), was expensive.

2. Postcard marketing campaign results: On Friday, a customer from Art and Soul of South End came in, and made another purchase. She didn't remember to bring her postcard, but of course, I gave her the discount anyway. I also gave it to the friend she brought, who also bought a mirror. They were both thrilled. Another woman came and was happy to see that a piece she'd seen in April was still available (she said she'd regretted not buying it then), and although she didn't bring the postcard, she did mention having received it. One other person came who'd received one, but she didn't purchase anything. And, of course my friend Lori came with her family, but more on that below. So, I'd say it was a good first effort. None of the gallery owners to whom I sent postcards identified themselves (if they came), so that aspect wasn't a success--I'd hoped to make contact with some of the local galleries, so they could view my work.

3. Response to new work: The new clocks with the raised leaves were a definite draw; people seemed to love the colors and the design. I even moved them around the booth, to see if people sought them out, and they did. But, no one bought them. I'm not sure why. The new leaf design color band mirrors sold almost immediately. In fact, single mirrors were the biggest seller. I suppose it's the price point ($30), the fact that you can use a mirror almost anywhere, and the size (10"x10"). One Ancestress has a new home; Kitambi, Ancestress of Pride "spoke to" a woman and her daughter who spent quite a while in the booth, hearing the story about how I create the Ancestresses.

4. Tarishi--people do get the message: I loved watching people's reactions to the Tarishi. When lots of them are on a shelf together, they make me laugh; there's just something fun about them. Many people reacted that way, too. I stuck messages in the coils like: "Don't forget flowers for Mom," and "Surprise party at 8:30," and of course: "Tarishi Mask Message Holders: $20". The Tarishi were the second best seller, though I'd expected to almost sell out. Lori bought one for her desk, and I made a gift of one to her handsome young son, to thank her family for all of their help with my postcard mailing. She's been a great friend and supporter of my work on her blog, Lori's Old School Mix. I'd like to return the favor, and will be among the first on line to buy a copy of her new book, After the Dance, to be published next April by Kensington Books. Congrats, Lori!

5. Oh, what great colors! More on this in part two; it's the one comment I get most often.

6. Meeting other artists: I will sing the praises and show you the work of a glass and clay jewelry artist I met in Festival in the Park, part two.

For now, it's time to get to the database...happy Wednesday.


Ri said…
Hey Michelle,

I really like the new work. Do you have any completed pics for my blog? I'd love to feature you again.