My DIY Craft Fair Display

April 29, 2013

Yesterday I was a vendor at the St. Theodore Tea and Fashion show and I needed a display to put my jewelry in! I spent exactly zero dollars on this, and just used things we had lying around the house! Somehow it still managed to look pretty professional and now I want to do more craft fairs just to use it! (I don't know if I'll be able to this summer, because it's such a time commitment--- we'll see!).

I know that most of you won't have supplies like these on hand, but I always like to see how others come up with solutions for things even when I don't have the supplies on hand. It usually helps me to think outside the box-- something I had to do a lot of for this display. No way was I going to spend $100 or more buying the "real" supplies that "real" artists use at fairs. I can buy beads and wire instead! :) The only item that I personally bought was the white necklace stand, and I got that months ago to use in photoshoots.

As I thought about putting a display together, I kept thinking about height-- no one likes bending over to see things!

The main part of the display is an unfinished oak kitchen cabinet which my Dad bought for $20 because it was damaged. We haven't given it a proper home yet, so it was out in the garage receiving a coat of cobwebs. It's heavy, but not too heavy to carry by myself.

The earring racks are two pieces of thin wood which I cut into rectangles with the scrollsaw and drilled dozens of holes into. The only downside is that a couple of the earrings get stuck in the holes-- they aren't too hard to get out, but they aren't too easy, either. It does make it easy to transport because none of them fall out on their own!

(By the way, I'm curious to know how other artisans price their jewelry for craft fairs. I rarely have more than one of any item on hand, except the ever-popular Evenstar collection, and it's tedious work to put a price tag by every item. Online, I can set each item to the exact price for my supplies and time. I would up compromising yesterday and averaging out the price of items to the nearest even-dollar increment. This meant that I had $7 and $14 earrings on the same rack, priced at $10. It's not ideal but for a one-day event I didn't know what to do!).

The strip lights are something that Dad had in the garage-- something for his truck, I've no idea what they are exactly but they are battery operated and stuck to the top with double-sided tape!

The bracelets are all resting on an empty roll of wrapping paper which I covered with part of a papery fabric tablecloth-- the same one that I use to wrap orders in when I run out of fabric or organza bags!

I put all the cuffs on the bottom of the display and gave it some height using glass from picture frames and wooden blocks.

I'm pretty proud of the hooks for the guitar string bangles and chainmaille keychains! I made it out of this giant roll of cheap aluminum wire I have on hand.

I was trying not to damage the nice cabinet so I used masking tape-- it was just strong enough but I was afraid it would fall down as people fingered the items! (it didn't!)

We had this wooden box lying around with knickknacks in it. I rolled up some fabric into little rolls and laid them side by side to display my rings properly. The cheaper plain wire rings and guitar string rings got jumbled up on the left because I had too many!

The necklace display is made from the cabinet doors. It wasn't ideal-- I think that necklace displays do a much better job of showing off my full necklaces. If I do any craft fairs in the future I will reserve these door displays for the pendant necklaces only. It works *great* for that!

The doors were just propped up on a basket and a book. They also have wire hooks taped to the back.

Lookie! Lookie! More Evenstar colors! It turns out that it's very difficult to find the leaf beads that I use for the Evenstar sets, especially when the website I usually buy from stopped carrying half the colors. Other places have them for crazy expensive prices. Think 50 cents or a dollar a bead. Then I found Brightling Beads and Shipwreck Beads so now I have every color they have in stock. Lots of new Evenstars!

I also will start using silver-plated chain instead of aluminum for the Evenstars. The aluminum I had before was cheap but wasn't up to par.

Anyway, the Evenstar necklaces and Enchanted Forest earrings are on another thin sheet of wood. I drilled holes for the earrings and nailed nails in to hang the pendants up.

The sapphire blue set is on the necklace stand that I made with an old book and a cereal box-- check out the tutorial here.

This is the necklace stand that I bought at Michaels awhile ago, and a folded-over index card (the perfect earring display in a pinch!). 

This necklace very similar to the Eowyn necklace I made a few months ago, only (*cough* if I may say so myself) better made.

It's the first new item that I've had a chance to put up on my Shoppe-- check it out!

Hope you liked this peek at the jewelry display I dreamed up!

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  1. Wonderful!

    Your jewelry is pretty too!

    I would suggest using a staple gun where you have the masking tape. That way the weather (humidity) or people pulling on your pieces won't let the tape fall off.

    I hope your show is a huge success!


  2. Thanks! Yeah, a staple gun or at least duct tape would work much much better, but I was allowed to use the cabinet only if I didn't do any permanent damage to it. :)

  3. Oh my goodness! This is all so gorgeous. Your jewelry is absolutely AMAZING!!! I love the copper and green ones best, I think. Those colours just look so warm together.

    Your displays are wonderful. Congratulations! Hope you had lots of sales!!


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