Interested in applying as a vendor for Craft Lake City’s 8th Annual DIY Festival? We’ve written out some tips for your reading pleasure as you prepare to apply. Remember, applications are due by April 17. The festival will be at the Gallivan Center, 239 S. Main Street, on Friday, Aug. 12 from 5 p.m. to 10 p.m., Saturday, Aug. 13 from noon to 10 p.m. and Sunday, Aug. 14 from noon to 7 p.m. There is an application fee of $20. Make the most of your application by following these guidelines:
1. Make sure you have quality photos. Lots of them.
The main product photo will be the first thing we see to represent your work. Talk about an important first impression. Most of the work displayed at Craft Lake City is visually based. If you are selling something you’ve made, we want to see a quality photo of it! Not just for us, but for future use as well. We would recommend getting some professional photos of your work. Now, that being said, we know that may not be an option for you. Fret not! There is still a lot you can do with a smart phone. Stylize an image that will showcase your work with thought, creativity and energy. Products look great clearly lit on simple backgrounds. Environmental shots of the product being used or worn are also helpful. Artisans spend hours and hours creating. It is so important for them to spend the time to get great photos of their product. Take a good photo and edit it with photo editing apps. Such as VSCO Cam, Color Story, Whitagram, etc… A quality photo will really do you some good. Trust us on this one. Great photos of your work will set you apart from other applicants and are very important to the judging process. You know how incredible your work is, but without great imagery, others will not be able to decipher the talent behind it. Check out this example of a product photo from last year’s vendor Fawn Designs.
2. Show us how your product is unique.
We love creativity! One of the first things we look for is originality. It’s important to be be able to describe why your products are different than others in your field. Is it your process that sets you apart? Is it your color scheme? Are you the only maker in this area regionally? Artisans and DIY engineers with unique products that are well-made have an easier time getting juried into the festival. If your product is a little more common, try to find a way to style it uniquely. Make it your own—having a specific brand or style associated with your product will help it sell. For example, if you make jewelry, there may be other people selling jewelry as well but make yours different some how, add a little of your personality or showcase it in a creative way. We like to sell products that people can’t buy anywhere else! A great example of this is from last year’s vendors is Mineral and Matter.
3. Keep your description short and sweet.
Tell us what we can’t already see in your photos. Keeping your description short, to the point, and adding a little personality into it, will help it be more memorable. Craft Lake City receives hundreds of applications, as much as we might like to, we don’t have time to read a short novel about your product. But we do want to know what makes your product unique and what materials you’re using. All you really need is 5 to 6 well written lines.
4. Keep your bios even shorter and sweet.
Remember that you are selling your product, not yourself. We want to know about your artistic story in just a few lines of text. Judges do not have time to read long-winded bios.
5. Fill your social media with presentable content.
We love to promote our festival artisans. Having your social media handles allows us to encourage our followers to follow you! In addition, applicants with a consistent social media presence show the judges that you are serious about creating and are willing to promote yourself and your participation in the festival. The judges will also look to Instagram if they feel like they need to see more pictures of your work—i.e. your application pictures are blurry or were shot without proper lighting. One of our previous vendors and workshop teachers—Light and Ink is a great example of this. Check out her Instagram here.
6. Keep your price range low.
We want our vendors to have successful sales at our event. The Craft Lake City DIY Festival is known for showcasing artisans with affordable price points and we find that artisans generally sell more with competitive pricing. We recommend keeping products under the $100 range. The most successful product retail in the $10 to 40 range. We don’t want to undersell yourself or your work by any means. Just make sure that your prices are fair to you and also affordable to the general public.
7. Apply as a vintage or craft foodie vendor.
If you may fit into more than one category, check applying to be a vintage vendor or a craft foodie. Generally speaking, the number of categories you check does not affect the judging of your application. However, in our vintage and craft foodie categories, we receive a considerably smaller amount of applicants and therefore they are easier to be accepted into, as there is not as much competition. Have a look at one of last year’s craft foodies: Noisette.
8. Figure out if you fit into the DIY Engineering category.
Craft Lake City has partnered with Google Fiber for this DIY Engineering category. More people fit into this category than you might think. Housed in our Google Fiber STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math) building, DIY engineers exhibit their own designs, display interactive projects and educate the general public about the exciting projects made with STEM principles. Past exhibitions have included robots, circuit bending light displays, 3D printing, drones, computer animation, Google glasses and more.
9. We need performers too!
We are always looking for great performers to entertain at the festival. You don’t have to be a typical crafter or DIYer to participate in Craft Lake City. Musicians, dance troupes, and other performance artists are encouraged to apply. Check out the photo of some of last year’s performers below from @snakesphoto.
10. Make your application memorable.
Have a little fun with your application! We read so many of these, you’ll stand out if you add a little personality. As stated previously, we love products that are unique. But whether or not you have a unique craft, you can make your application memorable with professional photos, concise and unique responses, and memorable facts. We cannot stress the quality imagery enough. It’s important stuff. A well-written, quality application with good photos will show us that you are serious about your craft and you are the kind of artist that we want to promote!
Now get to work on your application! Use this information well. If you have any other questions about the applying or the festival please refer to the FAQs here. Or feel free to contact us directly at firstname.lastname@example.org!