Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Historic Venue Great for A Market

This is my second fall as a craft vendor on Wednesdays in the historic Paddock Arcade in downtown Watertown, New York.  If you haven't stopped in to take a look at the inside of this building, not to mention the market on Wednesdays, you really should.  I so look forward each week to working with such a great group of people in this beautful place.

As I understand it, the Paddock Arcade is the nation's first and oldest continuously operating indoor shopping mall.  Its condition has suffered ups and downs over the years, but it is definitely in an up cycle right now, and it is decorated beautifully for the holidays!  Businesses in the Arcade include a newly opened gourmet sandwich shop, a beauty salon combined with a bar (genius idea, IMHO!), an art and antiques shop, a bike repair shop, a media marketing business, an all-faiths emporium, a casual sit-down lunch restaurant (serving dinner now Thursday, Friday and Saturday), and a tavern with a seemingly endless martini menu!  Next month, a cake and coffee shop will open that features European cake recipes and decorating.

Every Wednesday, mid-October to just before Christmas, even more is offered to customers when vendors set up for the weekly market in the center hallway.  On these days customers can also find homemade baked goods, original artwork, handpainted note cards, tie-dyed clothing and footwear, recycled sweater mittens, wine, flavored popcorn, jewelry made from antique solid silver forks, knives and spoons, Amish baskets, executive pens, my hand crocheted accessories (of course), and more at the Arcade!

Being a part of the Paddock Arcade's vendor community has been such a pleasure, and I hope you'll stop in to say hello sometime :D.

Friday, November 9, 2012

Linda Grows A Craft Business

This summer sure flew by!  With little to no rainy market days here (drought), I found myself mighty busy on a regular basis.  In August, I expanded my enterprise from one steady market day a week to three.  This meant three 10 hour days in a row, counting driving, setup, selling, takedown and followup administration.  It nearly killed me, but it was also lots of fun meeting all those new kindred spirits selling their wares and making new customer friends!

On 'at home' days I worked on my online shop, researched marketing and business stuff, crocheted like crazy to make new inventory and restock, and worked my other job as resident house tidier, taxi driver for teens, and minder for my resident elderly and very spry mother-in-law.  OK, I also spent a bit of time on Facebook, but maintaining and cultivating those relationships and keeping an all-important presence online are important business tasks, people!

Now we're in the middle of the holiday craft fair schedule and I can hardly believe it's here already!  I'm out there every Wednesday at a historic indoor market in my small city until just before Christmas, and have set up at two one-day weekend events so far.  Three more events and six Wednesdays to go before the after-holiday lull, when I'll have time to breath and test out all the new designs I've been wanting to try!