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Choosing The Right Bazaar

Since I am on the editorial board for Bazaar & Market and Business Resources, I should share some tips on choosing the right bazaar/market to participate as vendor.

Nowadays, I see that there is a lot of new organizers trying to host bazaars and some with the tagline of handmade craft market. Are they really promoting the handmade scene or simply just earning the money from the small indie business owner? Even if they are experienced organizer, could they bring the ‘right’ crowd?

Here are some of the rule of thumbs that I applied when comes to selecting the bazaar to join (some expensive experience learnt from past events) :

  • Location Location and Location
    Sounds like property investment but yes, location is important. This is the first thing that I consider because I paid an expensive lesson to learn this. I joined my first bazaar that was held at a small quiet mall in Ampang. Two huge mistakes here. First, the mall was so quiet, it looked more like an abandon building and second, driving to Ampang from PJ took me 1 hour++. I only manage to sell one hairpin. My friend didn’t make any sales. No, we didn’t get any refund because the organizer was not even there!
    Recently I joined the bazaar in Subang Parade (Subang Jaya). Superb location! But I’d chosen the wrong spot, a very hidden spot in the corner. But that didn’t matter a lot, because the main location (the mall) was good enough. A lot of my blog and fanspage followers turned up, we chatted, they bought some stuff, look and feel my fabrics and some purposely came for COD. Some couldn’t find my hidden spot, so they have to call me up. Because of the location, I have participate in the Subang Parade bazaar several times. So, hot spot IS VERY important.
  • Organizer’s Website
    I’ve seen some of the new bazaar organizers that emerge with really lousy blog layout. No introduction about who’s in the group, no follower, no fanspage, no nothing but a poster of the coming event asking vendor to sign up.  If they are so lazy upon setting up for their own blog, I doubt that they will be any good in promoting and marketing the event.
    To bring crowds to the bazaar, the organizer must have really strong network, with thousands of followers in their fanspage (or the Google Friend Connect thing), lots of interaction going on in the blog chat box, or fanspage, and most importantly they do reply to email and sms.
  • Organizer’s Past Event
    Most of the experienced organizers will share the pictures of past events in their gallery, fanspage, Facebook, or in the blog itself. Checking out the pictures will give you an idea what sort of crowds they could bring you.
    I’m always sceptical in joining newbie organizer’s event unless the rental is cheaper than the usual rate (see the point below).
  • Rental Guideline
    Rental Limit in KL is around RM50 to RM90.
    Hot spot shopping mall like Tropicana Mall and Subang Jaya is charging RM75/booth.
    Handmade-themed market are usually charging RM50/booth.
    Popular vintage market organizer are charging RM70-90. More expensive because vintage market likes to held the event at odd places (like clubs, hall, gallery) and they need to spend a lot on marketing.
    I do not have the rental for weekly bazaars (bazaar that needs you to join every week, a package fee) but I have a feeling that they are very or the most expensive because they are usually at hot spot mall and by reputable organizers (usually the mall management itself).

Think of joining the bazaar as a marketing tool to advertise your business. The effort might not translate to sales straight away on the bazaar day itself but the potential customers might check out your online shop and purchase from you when the time is right. Even if the day itself the sales is not so good, but make sure you did give out all your name cards. Online business depends a lot on (the right)TRAFFIC, that’s why my rule of thumb 1 to 3 is all about traffic. :)

Art & Life Market

Art & Life Market is calling for vendors.

They are looking for Handmade Vendors with

  • creative, unique or special items for sale
  • talent in handmade crafts (eg: painting, creative cuisine, soaps…)
  • young entrepreneurship ambition
  • We are providing you a platform to let your items be exposed, at a minimal rate of RM 70/day only, at the heart of Bukit Bintang – Fahrenheit 88!
  • Vendors are encouraged to join the market’s promotion.

Blog : http://www.artnlifemarket.blogspot.com/

Facebook: Art n Life Market
Date : 22-23, 29-30 Jan and 11-13, 18-20, 25-28 Feb
Venue : Fahrenheit 88

Contact :
Nicole (017-277 3273) or Ze Yong (012-2687 229)

Email : artnlifemarket@hotmail.com

Secret Santa/Santarina of Etsy Malaysia Local Team – Part 2.

Coming back to the second part of Secret Santa/Santarina gift exchange (see Part 1 here). We have a team member currently in Australia sending in her report. Tracy of dustofenchantment received a wire wrapped pearl jewellery set which she described as ‘simple and nice’, but was unable to confirm who her Secret Santa/Santarina was even after she opened her package, because her cute Secret Santa/Santarina ‘literally signed “Secret Santa” on the package‘. :) Luckily her Secret Santarina, Alison of mettaville contacted her later.

Amelia of CalienteJewelry received 5 adorable mini notebooks, 1 bigger notebook, 6 cards and 6 bookmarks from Nadiah of nukilan. ‘Yup it’s a lot! 1 year supply!’ She said.

Nadiah also team up with Rekha at funkytiles, and sent Alison of mettaville a package she considered one of the most delightful gifts ever. Following the instruction from her Secret Santarinas to open on Christmas day, Alison could only opened the package on 27 Dec as she was away. The package contributed to her collection of funkytiles magnets and coasters. ‘The reindeer is super cute and handsome!’ She added.

Madeline of beadscraftz received her package a little after Christmas. She opened a package with a set of cute cupcake cards, mini tags, a little notebook, a flip paper album, butterfly cutouts hanger and bakers twine (whoa sounds A LOT!) from Evelin of angelicquirk.

Zurien of lovefatejewelry received some Japanese-themed goodies from Pek Mun of JainaBee: a framed Japanese paper doll, and a sweet collection of Japanese paper. And yes, that’s an angel lollipop!

Chic Pop Street Market 6

This street market date might be a bit too near but last week I checked with them, they are still accepting new vendor application. So you guys can still try to apply if you can make it.

Saturday: 22nd January 2011: 12pm – 6pm
Chic POP Street Market 6 @ Jaya One, Jalan Universiti, Section 14, Petaling Jaya (MY)


Save the date for our sixth Chic POP Street Market, happening next month! Mark your calendars for the first shopping date of the year with us and be sure to keep checking the site for more details!

Kaka Art Market

【卡卡手創藝術市集】集手作、美术、摄影、陶瓷、表演艺术、音乐、艺术交流…于一屋檐下。
【Kaka Handemade Art Market】 Handmade, Painting, Photograghy, Pottery, Performing Art, Music, Arts Exchange… all under one roof.

Venue : Shaw Parade, Ground Floor, Changkat Thambi Dollah, Pudu, 55100 Kuala Lumpur

Time : 11am-7pm

每个月的第一个星期日举行
Market on 1st Sunday of every month
2/1/2011, 6/3/2011, 3/4/2011

一月份主题:新 年快乐
January Theme:Happy Chinese New Year
(Theme colour : Red)

三 月份主题:简约生活(慈善日)
March Theme:Simple Life (Charity Day)
(Theme colour : Grey)

四月份主题:动物王国
April Theme:Animal Kingdom
(Theme colour : Wild)

摊位报名方式 Registration:
请寄来您的姓名、3张作品照片、部落格和联络电话,我 们将发送详情和报名表格给您。
Kindly send them your name, three (3) photographs of your creation, blog address and contact number. They will proceed on sending you the registration form upon receiving your email.

欲询问详 情及报名,请电邮至:
For enquiry and registration, please email to :
tuna605@gmail.com

Secret Santa/Santarina of Etsy Malaysia Local Team – Part 1.

Happy holidays everyone!

Wow it’s been really a while since the last post on Team blog. I personally had a total blasting month and am finally able to relax a bit now. I heard from many team members that they too had been busy over the last too months. If you are reading this, I hope you two had a good year end. :)

Earlier this month several members started a Secret Santa/Santarina gift exchange (private thread, for team members only) on the team’s forums before Christmas, and with about 30 members participating, everyone got what they wanted + plenty of surprises. Special thanks to Jenny of jpbeads for organising this superbly fun team activity! Here are some reports from team members. Take note that none of those participating knows who their Secret Santa/Santarina was before they got their package, so there were really a lot of excitement and fun! :)

Continue reading

Crafty Art Market Goodness

It’s 8:45am on a bright, crisp and cool Saturday morning, and my phone rings. “Hello, it’s Emi here. How do I get to Jaya One from the Federal Highway?”

WHAT? Someone’s already on the way to the Crafty Art Market and I’m not even out of my pyjamas yet! Talk about committed. So begins the frantic scrambling to dump my gear into the car, along with baby Reuben, who was serenely observing the chaos while sucking on his toes.

Crafty Art Market 1011 Bunting

Limited edition screenprints of this Crafty Art Market's poster hung outside The Bee

It’s 10:30am when I arrive at Jaya One and the normally sleepy sidewalks are already bustling with Etsy sellers and enthusiastic visitors. All tables lining the sidewalks were fully occupied, with just 3 spaces left further inside, adjacent to The Bee. I am thoroughly impressed with how early everyone is, and slightly embarrassed that I am among the latecomers. The organisers had clearly done a fantastic job of getting the logistics settled so that we could concentrate fully on doing up our shops and getting ready to meet our customers.

Crafty Art Market 1011 reiyap

Handpainted tiles from ReiYap.etsy.com

I glow inside upon observing excited smiles and chatter being exchanged amongst vendors, as well as with customers and curious passers-by. Light, classy jazz numbers float out of The Bee, echo down the hall and spill onto the street to meld with those conversations.

There is an unmistakable, undeniable warmth, and it’s not from the weather.

Crafty Art Market 1011 reiyap

Owl pillows from FongStudio.etsy.com

Throughout the day, customers come and go. At times the walkways are quiet, then suddenly we’d find ourselves awash with visitors and buyers, everyone jostling to get a closer look at what’s on display or to squeeze past the narrower walkways. We talk about our art, share what inspires us to create what we do, wander over to another Etsian’s table and make new friends. Our friends and family stop by to say hello and exclaim their surprise at just how lively the Market is. And when we get a little downtime, some of us scuttle over to The Bee for food and coffee, both of which are whisked over to our tables by friendly waiting staff.

Crafty Art Market 1011 trinkettrove

Display at TrinketTrove.etsy.com's table

In the afternoon, it rains. Plastic sheets and boxes appear, protecting our goods from the worst of the weather. From what I hear, everyone’s spirits were still bright and buoyant, unaffected by the downpour. The rain eventually clears, leaving the streets open to browsing once again.

Visitors continue to pass through the market right till 6pm, when we are meant to close shop. We call out our take-cares and goodbyes, and all too soon the streets fall back to their usual quiet calm.

At this point, I am mentally kicking myself for not making time to take photographs of the Market, or to visit everyone’s stall to welcome them personally (more photos courtesy of Skyejuice and Kiirey can be found on Team Etsy Malaysia’s Facebook Page). But I know we all had a great experience with this inaugural Crafty Art Market and are looking forward to the next one in December.

Crafty Art Market 1011 Minifanfan

The lovely girls behind MiniFanFan.etsy.com

Thank you everyone for bringing your enthusiasm, your warm smiles, and of course, the craft that you make with such passion. The secret ingredient that gave the Market its unique sense of warmth and camaraderie, was, I truly believe, the Etsy culture that we all innately share as members of this global community of handcrafters.

Let’s spread the love. :)

p/s: More personal accounts of the Crafty Art Market have been written by MimpiMurni, Irene of Bloesem, Alison of MettavilleChristine of Kalleo Handmade Soaps and Jia Wen of Inkypots.