John, were you at the show this summer at Sunapee? I accidentally found it while visiting. Wonder if we met?
No, I wasn't at Sunapee this year. Sorry. I am a "State Level" juried member of the League..... but don't do any "craft fairs" anywhere anymore. (Plus it seems like I now spend most summers working in Japan .)
I did the annual League Sunapee Fair every summer for many years. But I have found that the whole concept of the "craft fair" is pretty much a "dead horse". Even one with the history and "tradition" of the League Sunapee Fair. It is a great fun event for the people visiting the fair though.
For that fair to make any sense at all to do, the Dollar volume has to be HUGE. It is a 9 day event with two days of setup and one of breakdown. Add in packing the day before and unpacking the day after... and it is basically two weeks of being a retailer, not a potter. If you look at the published average booth sales for clay over the last 15 years or so........ from my point of view it doesn't support the time commitment. Even well above average sales did not make sense to me for my work........so I stopped doing it. It was the last craft fair I did and I did that well beyond any other fairs.
I also found that for years I was seeing the same faces at the Fair. Not just people who bought from me... but the "faces passing by". Overall it was not getting many new customers. At some point.... folks have their collection of my work pretty well fleshed out. They'll still buy the occasional piece of my stuff.... but not at levels that work well for me.
I find that putting the same time, money, and effort into other marketing approaches for finished work yields better results.
I do miss the "gathering of the clan" aspect of that Fair a lot though...... it is a fun place to be ............ but I can't afford to indulge that luxury.
Professor of Ceramics; New Hampshire Insitute of Art
Guest Professor, Wuxi Institute of Arts and Science, Yixing, China
Former President and Past President; Potters Council