Craft Vendor Pro Tip: Mock Setups

Craft Vendor Pro Tip: Mock Setups

Creating your setup for pop up events and markets can be one of the hardest parts about selling as a craft vendor. There are so many things to take into account, and unless you have a plan, it can take a huge chunk of your setup time. Each event is different – and being prepared for different situations will ensure smoother sailing for you and your business. That’s why we suggest creating mock setups beforehand to get a feel for what to expect, organize your ideas and reduce stress the day of your event.

What is a mock setup exactly? Well, that all depends! It’s a pre-event activity some vendors do in order to save time and energy the day of their event. We suggest creating both an indoor and outdoor setup – meaning one with just table(s) and the other with your canopy tent. You’ll need to confirm with your event promoter to know whether it’s indoor or outdoor, and what size booth to expect. A 6-8ft booth space is pretty common, so we suggest working within this amount of space when assembling your booth. Taking the time to create your setup before the actual event has many benefits:

You can see just how much product will fit in the allotted space.

Take the time to play with different product layouts. If you’re given 6ft of space and have vendor neighbors, think about building your table setup vertically. You can do this by using wooden crates and stacking them to include more products without overcrowding your display.

You can see where to place products and fixtures.

If you’re a craft vendor who uses other fixtures besides tables – like clothing racks or shelving – taking time before the event to create a display could save you the headache of having to figure it out the day of. Try different layouts, shapes and placements until you find what works best for you and your display. Be prepared for different scenarios – for example having vendor neighbors and/or corner displays. Be sure to reach out to your promoter to get confirmation on which setup you’ll need to be uber prepared.

If you’re working on an outdoor display, you’ll need to decide if you want shoppers to enter your booth or if you want to place your table up front and use your booth for inventory and storage. This will all depend on your product, aesthetic and fixtures.

See the potential shopability of your booth.

Creating a mock setup can also help you see how shoppable your booth is. Some questions to ask – where do the eyes go first? Can you see your products and display from far away? Can people shop easily? Be sure to also place signage and email signup sheets where people can see them. This is also the ideal time to perfect your merchandising.

Take photos of your display.

Taking photos of your display is a great way to make sure your setup will be an absolute breeze. You can easily reference these photos the day of the event and place everything where it needs to go, as opposed to trying to remember it every time.  

These are just a few suggestions to get you going, so feel free to make it your own. The more events you do, the easier your setup will be. Be open to changing things the day of; you never know what each event will bring. Practice and repetition will fine tune your setup and overall craft vending experience. But more than anything, have fun with it!