Hi guys! It’s been a while since I updated because I had been SOO caught up with all the events that happened in the last few months of 2015. :) Jam-packed action all the way through but to be honest, I felt that this is the life worth living.
So my humble brand, Beary Naise Co., took part in Christmas Carousel Market by The People’s Avenue held at Capitol Piazza over the weekends of 28th-29th November, and here’s a ‘seller’s reflections’ piece on our experience. Hope it will come in handy for fellow Singaporean crafters looking to host their own booths at a craft fair!
You may be interested in the reflections post I did on Public Garden fair held at Suntec City Convention hall too. :)
On the venue and Set up
We were only there for one day – 28th, so my reflections are based on what I experienced on Saturday only.
I think The People’s Avenue picked a fairly good location – Capitol Piazza is teeming with organic crowd when night falls, and we were lucky because several other events were being held in the vicinity too, like the museum façade light show, Vanitee pop-up booths at Chijmes, Public Garden just down ahead at F1 Pit Building and more. Capitol Piazza is in the midst of all the action! Being lucky aside, Capitol Piazza itself is a very romantic place with its Venetian Renaissance architectural style building with a unique mix of shops/brands leaning on the high-end side. That pretty much sets shoppers in the mood of spending, doesn’t it?
The fair was outdoors but sheltered. The beautiful set up by the organisers attracted passers-by along North Bridge Road, which was very important as people were starting to be in Christmas-y mood and naturally gravitated towards the decorations. Atmosphere was smashing. Superb effort by the organisers! Not sure if it was coincidental or planned, but there was a singer/busker who belted out songs in the evening, and he was amazingly in sync with the water fountain with lights feature right in front of us.( <– unimportant observation by me. haha.)
On the mix of Crowd
The entire cluster of City Hall mrt, Raffles City Shopping Mall, St. Andrew’s Cathedral, Funan IT mall sees a rather big crowd on weekends. And the mix was good! In the day, there were church-goers, friends on lunch dates… Night time was when things start to come alive; there were movie-goers, hip young couples looking for a good dinner, young families, middle-aged and older couples on a date…
The good mix of crowd with spending power meant that most of the craft vendors had really good sales! Another thumbs up!
Beary Naise Co. Lip Balm & Lip Stick Holders
On Mix of Sellers
Saw familiar faces- like Salinah, Aisah, Salehah of Simply4Love, Jiahui of ParadeMade, Lawrens of Tee-saurus, Olivia from Nerilia, Vivien from TheCottonShoppe.
Made a new friend like Nadine from Love,n. I only managed one because I was ill that day and did not even get to walk a full round of the fair itself. I was not in my best shape and I’m happy that I even made just one new friend. haha.. Nadine sews really gorgeous oversized foldover clutches and we clicked in an instance because we both had picked up our sewing skills on our own!
I had a chat with her and she shared with me that she really liked the fair’s mix of sellers because all of us were different in our crafts- even though there were a few of us selling handmade bags or sewn items, our product style and appeal was distinct from each other. This creates variety and range, instead of boring shoppers with the same goods.
For example, on the type of handmade dolls available that day, the fair had adorable sock dolls from A Little Abnormal, reversible dolls from Matcha5, and wooden peg dolls from Sarra’s Dolls.
Check out the official event photos here!
On The Organising Committee: The People’s Avenue
The People’s Avenue is very new, in fact this was only their second event. But they are also the only event organiser that have met up with every single seller and explained their vision and ethics. The feeling I get from working with them is very down-to-earth – I know who they are, unlike the other organisers whom I’ve never even met. Haha..Never thought about that, but knowing who you’re working with really makes a difference. Most importantly, they put themselves in the shoes of makers/designers/entrepreneurs to create a partnership that is mutually beneficial.
Before the event, the organisers took photographs of individual vendors and created a “Seller’s profile” on their Facebook events page that features the seller with a short description, and 3 product photos. I felt that this step was really special because firstly, it places emphasis and recognition on the people behind each brand. To us, it means so much that our stories are heard. And secondly, the publicity worked because I had a customer who specifically came down after seeing Beary Naise‘s product pictures. They don’t pick who gets to be featured and who doesn’t- you get featured as long as you submit the photos.
Well, don’t just take my word for it. I’ve spoken to other sellers and all of them expressed praise for this organiser. I guess that’s what the human touch is all about. We are all looking forward to the next!
Beary Naise Co. Strawberrie Bucket Bag
I was super pale, had a terrible cough fits, sore throat and headache on the day itself. Almost didn’t make it, but I was quite determined sit it through, and I’m glad I did! I’m really thankful to Hammy who helped to talk to customers when I couldn’t. He really helped with A LOT of aspects on that day. He made me smile when I felt too exhausted and gave me the motivation to last through the entire day. So a BIG THANK YOU to you, dear. :)
After being immersed in such a great atmosphere with so many inspiring makers with really fabulous brands, I think I’ve got to improve on a couple of things here…
A consistent product offering
Hmm. I haven’t had a very consistent product offering since my first fair (this was my third), because – Beary Naise being young – you can call this a ‘testing phase’ where I roll out different products and see which are a better hit with customers. Then I decide which to keep and which to let go.
After several rounds of trying, I have a better idea of what works and what does not now, and I will develop from here. I want to stabilise my product offering so then I can work on the next point, which is……
A Booth Concept!!!
Looking at other booths really puts mine to shame. I literally have no booth concept (scroll up for booth pic). Hammy and I have discussed about this before and rule it down to me not have a consistent product offering. Having different products each time means that I can’t settle on permanent shelving or racks. Which is sad because I have all these awesome ideas and inspirations for a really cool booth but they are not being realised. In the coming year, I will make sure this is fixed.
So yes, cheers to another pleasant experience at a craft fair. Thank you The People’s Avenue, lovely shoppers, and terrific vendors!! I love this community. <3
In all honesty, Beary Naise began as a dream, then it became a thought, which led to words and images, and those brought action, now I can’t believe I’m living what I envisioned about a year ago. What makes this journey so exciting is that I probably will be a very different person and in a very different place next year. And I’m looking forward to it already.
Thank you :)