One of the hardest jobs of organising a fair is the selection process. We’ve been really lucky since we started out in 2015 in getting really high quality stalls. We obviously want to keep it that way! But how do we choose?
Unless we’re already familiar with your work, selection mostly hinges on the photographs you send with your application. That means that they have to be of really good quality. We need to be able to use them in publicity as well as the selection process. A quick snap with your phone usually won’t do the trick!
Your Online Presence
We also have a look at your website, because this gives us a fuller picture of your work, showing it in situ and giving us an idea of your brand personality. So make sure you include all your online presence on your application so we don’t have to go hunting on search engines to find you!
A Coherent Collection
We’re looking for a coherent collection of products that have a clear design aesthetic. We are aware that when makers first start out, they often try lots of different products. We’ve all done that! But it can also be a bit of a jumble and confusing for customers. When we select, we’re looking not just at individual products but the whole collection or brand.
Your Price Point
We know our customers (see below). They aren’t expecting cheap as chips. But nor are they spending hundreds of pounds on items. A stallholder may want to exhibit some “aspiration” pieces of work, and that is absolutely fine, but we’d be looking for some more affordable pieces in the collection too.
Finally, we select for our audience. We have been participating in fairs in Headingley since 2012 and although we get new people every time, we kind of know our customers. We pretty much know what they like. That doesn’t mean we only show them the same things time after time. We like to push their boundaries, and show them new things at each fair. But there are some things that we know they won’t be interested in. And we won’t take your money if we think you don’t stand a chance of selling anything.