Preparing for fall fiber festivals

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How's that for alliteration? Sheepspot will be appearing at its first two fiber shows here in Ontario this fall: the Kitchener-Waterloo Knitter's Fair on September 12, and the Woodstock Fleece Festival on October 17. I wanted to try out this whole vending thing close to home, and these two events are the perfect way to do that.

With the first show now less than five weeks away, I've been engaging in a flurry of research, list-making, and planning. I'll confess that, pre-flurry, I spent a fair amount of time in an utter panic about all the bits and pieces of this project. But while I was away last week I finally had the mental bandwidth to start chipping away at it.

The most fun piece of the project so far has been working out the booth design. I knew what I wanted the booth to look like: clean, simple, warm, and filled with natural materials. But how to translate that into the raw materials required for a 10' x 10' space while simultaneously ensuring that said raw materials—and all the stock I want to bring—can be transported in the back of Matthew's Honda Fit?

I started with some searches on Pinterest and Google Images for "fiber festival booth design," collecting images of anything I liked (or, initially, particularly didn't like and wanted to avoid) onto a secret Pinterest board. I kept it secret because I wanted to be able to be free with my comments on the images (and I'm still keeping it secret because I want the "reveal" to be a surprise). When I found these, along with a few pictures of them in use in actual booths, I knew I was on to something: 


These are made from pine shutters. They are lightweight and fold completely flat. They're 58" high, so they're give the booth "walls" and bring products closer to eye level. And they're simple. Kowabunga! I ordered four of them, along with extra shelves and a little matching desk where I can sit. That gave me the bare bones of the booth. 

Then I got to think about the fun stuff: how to decorate to make the space inviting, colorful, and fun. I'm not going to say too much about this at this point, but rest assured, wool and yarn will be involved! Also little fairy lights in vintage mason jars, because any important decorating in my life must involve vintage mason jars:

I got this pic from  Lee Caroline's blog .

I got this pic from Lee Caroline's blog.

Getting to design the booth has turned the whole get-ready-for-shows thing into something hugely interesting and fun for me, and it's energized me for the other, not-so-fun aspects, like worrying whether the printer will finish the ball bands in time and schlepping to Ikea and the Home Depot. I'm making a lot of the decorations myself, which nicely punctuates the other stuff. 

Are you in Southwestern Ontario? Will you stop by and see how it all comes together? Tell me in the comments.