Monday, October 22, 2012

Ten Ways to Prepare for Shopping at a Craft Festival


It’s that time of year. That time when you feel heart palpitations as your write out your gift-giving list and realize how little you have. That time when you look around your home and tell yourself that it would be more cozy and comfortable with a little je ne sais quoi. That time when you go to your closet and you aren’t quite satisfied with the faded colors and last year’s feel of your seasonal clothing.

What’s a girl to do?

Go to a craft festival, of course.
So you jump in your car, strap on your seatbelt, and vroom off to the nearest fair. Right?

My family did just that last Friday as we headed out to the Covered Bridge Festival in Parke County, Indiana, except that we prepared a bit first. Here’s a list of ten you might want to consider before you rush off in a craft-induced mania.

  1. Prepare for the weather, especially if it’s outside. The weather on Friday was cold and drizzly, so the children put raincoats on top of their heavy jackets. If the festival is inside, you might want to leave your coat in the car so you don’t have to carry it around.
  2. Prepare to leave at the appointed time. If you need to leave home at a certain time because of the driving distance or to meet friends, then get your diaper bag or purse ready the night before. Set the table for breakfast the night before. Decide what you’re going to wear the night before. You get the idea.
  3. Prepare for the munchies. There’s just something about shopping that makes us want to munch. Can I get an amen?! Children too will be happier tagging along or sitting in a stroller if they have a snack. If you don’t want to dole out the big bucks for all those deep-fried atrocities, pack a snack bag with your favorites.
  4. Prepare to go off your diet. If this isn’t a struggle for you, I give you a standing ovation. But there’s just something about the aroma of kettle corn that breaks down my resistance.
  5. Prepare for lunch. Sometimes people –no names, please – get a little grouchy if they have to wait too long to eat. Think ahead about what you want to do. Pack a picnic lunch. Or, as you peruse the aisles, be evaluating your purchasing options. That way, the decision is easy to make and you don’t end up in a grouch war.
  6. Prepare to see things you think are inappropriate. My childhood introduction to crafting was at a church bazaar where little old church ladies displayed crocheted toilet paper roll covers and baby doll blankets. I innocently believed that crafting was one of the sacraments, owned by the church. Not so! I’ve seen liquor bottles with lights inside, tee-shirts with immodest images, and Santa Claus legs to hang out the chimney. Look for the good and skip the bad.
  7. Prepare your pocketbook. Watching a stranger jot my credit card number on a scrap piece of paper and stick it in his pocket is not my idea of security. If you’re paying cash, make sure you have enough.
  8. Prepare your heart. “I have learned in whatever state I am, to be content: I know how to be abased, and I know how to abound…. I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.” (Philippians 4:12-13) Be prepared to say no to an item if you don’t love it, don’t have a space in your home for it, or don’t have the money for it.
  9. Prepare for inspiration. Perhaps you need to browse the offerings simply to find ideas. At home, make it yourself for less money and with your own individual flourish.
  10. Prepare to submit. A few years back, my husband bought a particular piece of décor that he really liked. I could definitely have done without it. But it now resides in our home. Alternatively, your husband may tell you no to a purchase for any number of reasons – finances, room in the van to haul it, differing tastes, inappropriateness of the item, or he simply doesn’t like feathers. Accept it, move on, and eat more kettle corn.


Browsing a craft festival is like so many other activities. The most important part is the togetherness. (And the kettle corn!)








Do you like to attend craft festivals? What’s your favorite part?




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18 comments:

  1. What a nice blog, some things I recognize. Here in the Netherlands are many charity shops. I like to go to it with the kids. In the autumn holidays, last week, we bought a nice snowglobe. My daughter collects them. I myself bought craft materials, books etc. I like punt 7, 8 from your blog. Thanks

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    1. I love snow globes, but I don't see them much anymore. And it's always appropriate to buy books! Thanks for stopping by.

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  2. I love looking at all the cute stuff, but I'm not a fan of the crowds.

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    1. Perhaps, depending on where you go, some days are less busy than others? Maybe that's another good reason to stay home and DIY.

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  3. I haven't been to a craft fair recently, but hope to go in the near future. These are some great tips.

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  4. I like your ideas! I'm stopping over from Denise in Bloom. :)

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    1. Thanks, Becki. So glad to have you visit, and I appreciate knowing how you found me!

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  5. Great tips. I enjoyed this.
    Thanks for sharing.

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  6. Wonderful advice, Meghan! Thanks for linking up your list with Thrive @ Home.

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    1. Thank you, Jenni, and thanks for the link-up.

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  7. Man this post brought back so many fond memories of my mom and I either perusing craft fairs or being vendors. I miss those. We don't have craft fairs here...maybe I need to start a new trend! Thanks for linking up!

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    1. If you're a vendor, Rosilind, go for it! Most women enjoy a good, reasonably-priced craft festival.

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