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  • Vendor Items

    My husband and I are going to give the vending route a go next year to just try to get enough extra money for gas money for our powwow trips. We are going together with a few friends and family to make a joint booth and split the vendor fees. We don't want anything that isn't handmade or natural. Well, what types of items catch your guys' eye at a booth?

    We're hoping to gain a few custom orders (which is all I do right now) from what we have in the booth so we would like to have at least a few examples of sewing and beadwork. If you guys can let me know what catches people's eye or any tips on how to be a good vendor, help me out! Wado!

  • #2
    My girls usually buy earrings and hair pieces, purses and candy. My 2nd youngest son he buys those littlle bobble head animals, one from each powwow. I buy t-shirts and sweat shirts, my oldest son does to and he likes the baseball hats. I buy the t-shirts and sweats cause the other stuff I could make, but you know what thats like I'm sure, although I love looking at the baby ribbon dresses, course then everyone thinks I'm having another, really I just wish my girls would wear cute girly stuff. My husband wants to do this to and sell his bone and antler work, and his food. Hope this helps.

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    • #3
      Around our area, I would say those leather hair wraps, seems when we vend, we always have people asking where to find them. That, and beaded hair barrettes.
      I normally vend my line of body sprays, lotions and candles. (Kamamas Kreations) which are all in Native scents - sweetgrass, lavender, sage, tobacco, and cedar. Dunno if that would help in ideas or not, but, with the body line, sometimes you do well, sometimes you dont. And with candles, you have to watch where you sit them, they can tend to melt a little if you use soy wax. I tend to use both soy and parraffin, as some people prefer the natural soy, and some are allergic to the parraffin as well, ya just gotta mark which is made from what.
      Walk softly, leave nothing but footprints....

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      • #4
        Jenn, the braid wraps are a good idea. I have a ton of leather that I don't really have a use for (weird shapes, etc.) that I could use. I didn't know you guys did vending. I'm probably gonna keep a few barrettes on hand to sell but mainly I'm gonna still do custom beadwork orders. I think we'll make up some bags and stuff too but I don't know.

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        • #5
          i don't vend at powwows(mainly because i don't get a chance or haven't had a chance) but i go to anime conventions with my friends and sell my sculpture works there, i think the main thing i've found about being a good vendor is so long as you nice and amiable you'll sell well. also i'm happy to barter and haggle my prices, because as an artist i know how much i paid for what goes into my art and how much i raised the total cost when i sell it. thing like that have brought me tons of customers and starting 2 years ago i nearly sell out of everything so i take extra materials to make stuff i'm there ^_^

          though as for what catches my eye, alittle bit of everything, even if i don't have the money to buy things, that won't stop me from looking, i especially like jewelry, bone, and various hand crafted items, and also ceremonial supplies like tobacco and sage as well
          sigpic

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          • #6
            Originally posted by cherokeemom06 View Post
            Jenn, the braid wraps are a good idea. I have a ton of leather that I don't really have a use for (weird shapes, etc.) that I could use. I didn't know you guys did vending. I'm probably gonna keep a few barrettes on hand to sell but mainly I'm gonna still do custom beadwork orders. I think we'll make up some bags and stuff too but I don't know.
            We dont vend very often, MAYBE 1 to 2 pow wows a year. And thats when we have a couple of our friends with us to help watch the booth, cause normally Danny is either Emcee'ing, or I am Head Lady'ing, or we are both singing with the Drum, and its just really hard for us to vend, because we're just not able to be at the booth. We had our booth sat up in Gallipolis, our friend Nan (Ladyfox) and her man was watching the booth for us, as well as vending there stuff too. (We share a booth with them) They were an older couple, you may have seen them.OH! ya know where your hubby took that pic of us together? That was our booth - next to Kat.
            But yea, the leather ties would prolly work. Maybe even moccs, if you can make those?
            Walk softly, leave nothing but footprints....

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            • #7
              Originally posted by Flying_Raven View Post
              though as for what catches my eye, alittle bit of everything, even if i don't have the money to buy things, that won't stop me from looking, i especially like jewelry, bone, and various hand crafted items, and also ceremonial supplies like tobacco and sage as well
              I have to agree, sage and sweetgrass.
              Walk softly, leave nothing but footprints....

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              • #8
                Originally posted by Flying_Raven View Post
                and also ceremonial supplies like tobacco and sage as well
                Some of the powwows we go to you can't sell these items, you can only trade for them, so you would want to check.

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                • #9
                  I have been selling now for 9 years and counting! As a seller I realize one thing , quality, non taiwan, then from there on make a difference, have things made from your heart that no one else has, I see that vendors go from table to table and check out what the others have, next year they have what you made. Time to change and modify. If you see tooooooo much of one thing people compare and go to the cheapest and then complain about the quality when it doesn't last.

                  So the big thing is look at the other vendors, see what they all carry, then with drawings in hand, cut and paste and make new ideas. Here I have seen fans, always same old same old,,,boring!!! So I stepped away from wooden and plastic handles, started with antlers and then went to deer legs, then wolf legs and now once in a while fox legs.
                  Same with my chokers, I started off with the same old pakistanni beads that everyone has, now I use bear ribs, wolf paw bones and all kinds of other smaller bones from any animal that is usable. Just think if a person sees a choker or neckace made with the bones claws and teeth of their totem. That sells and opens eyes. Plastic chokers will just sit there in comparison. Take a look in my album and see the choker there made from the ribs of a young bear!

                  Another one that catches the eye is hair ties, cheap but well made, kids swarm all over looking for them. The adults follow and look for the quality ones themselves.

                  Hope this helps!

                  That is why I do bone carvings and road kill art. There is no one else here that pics up all the birds and animals and either sells or barters with them.
                  Listen to my heart, not just my mouth! The most powerfull thing we can do is,,,share,,, if we don't it dies with us.

                  It is the year of the bear, I am sharpening my claws and will no longer tollerate harrassment.

                  Born in Winnipeg raised in the Pikwakanagan, Deutschland was never home! Army brat that had no choice in a parents duties to home and country. I Too Serve our flag and work for the uniform.
                  Stand behind our troops or stand IN FRONT of them.

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                  • #10
                    Tibiki's table is popular up here, I'd take his advice. The kids also love the trading he does, which brings in us parents.

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                    • #11
                      I would put out some basic and small items and then get custom orders for larger or more complicated things. Shawls and ribbon shirts would be good. Hair ties, barrettes, bags and medallion necklaces too. Definitely put out a photo album of your past work (without prices) so people can see what kind of custom orders you can do.

                      Since you are good at photography, maybe you could set up a little area to take portrait shots of dancers for a fee. Not sure how you would be able to get them their picture printed quickly though.

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Czechy View Post
                        Since you are good at photography, maybe you could set up a little area to take portrait shots of dancers for a fee. Not sure how you would be able to get them their picture printed quickly though.
                        You could get a tourist style ndn cut out and the tourist can get their pic taken with that and leave us all alone! but seriously Czechy's idea is good

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                        • #13
                          Another thing I used to do, was to put one table there with freebees that I got from a liquidation sale. It was a mix of silver and gold jewelery that cost me next to nothing, when you put out something like a thousand pairs of earrings of all kinds and put a free sign on it, you get people there for hours, then they ask again and again if it is really free or a prank!
                          I bought 7 large totes full of contemporary bling and that is now gone in just two years. I also went and got pins for jackets or hats, freebees again.
                          Then the big one that most vendors forget, talk to the PEOPLE!!! Don't just sit there, if you sulk in a corner NO ONE will want to be near your booth!!!
                          SuzzeQ4, I am looking forward again to seeing you and your sweet kids!
                          Listen to my heart, not just my mouth! The most powerfull thing we can do is,,,share,,, if we don't it dies with us.

                          It is the year of the bear, I am sharpening my claws and will no longer tollerate harrassment.

                          Born in Winnipeg raised in the Pikwakanagan, Deutschland was never home! Army brat that had no choice in a parents duties to home and country. I Too Serve our flag and work for the uniform.
                          Stand behind our troops or stand IN FRONT of them.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by SuzzeQ4 View Post
                            You could get a tourist style ndn cut out and the tourist can get their pic taken with that and leave us all alone! but seriously Czechy's idea is good
                            You have the idea there! The last powwow we were at a friend of mine looked at me and said, "Wow, since when did natives become celebrities?"

                            Would you believe that I had someone actually ask me if I knew what electricity was?

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by cherokeemom06 View Post
                              You have the idea there! The last powwow we were at a friend of mine looked at me and said, "Wow, since when did natives become celebrities?"

                              Would you believe that I had someone actually ask me if I knew what electricity was?
                              Yes I would believe it. I used to babysit my friends son when he was 4 (he's 16 now...wow) anyway we once ran into a kid & parent at the park with similar ideas, wanted to know if he lived in a tipi etc. He was confused by the white kids questions, especially the tipi thing I guess cause when we left he asked me "what do white people live in?"

                              Comment

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