LH design at Renegade Craft Fair 2015
Two weeks ago, we went to our first Renegade craft fair at The Old Truman Brewery in Brick Lane. It was filled to the brim, quite literally, with over 200 wonderful sellers that had been handpicked by the Renegade team, and we were absolutely ecstatic to be part of it. Renegade has always been a market I've admired from afar, not really ever sure if we'd be accepted, but I decided to go for it, and to my surprise we got in!
Merchandising for fairs is a great love of mine, and undoubtedly my favourite part of prep. After Top Drawer, I wanted to incorporate some OSB as I think it works well with the monochrome aesthetic of the products, and because it can be so darn pretty. This time, instead of taking 12 panels of it, I just used an off-cut we use as a headboard in our bedroom and made it into a price list, with some help from my superb pal, Clara and her wonderful vinyl decal ways. As well as the usual white sheet, prints at the back and cards in my little wire baskets, I also added some plastic ivy and some globe lights I got from an unnamed large retailer which I won't recommend as they looked like they were dying as soon as I switched them on! They came in handy when it got dark though, and created a nice, ambient light, as we were in the side of the hall that had no windows above us. I also went a bit crazy with the marble contact paper, and covered some boxes with it for the prints to stand on and create some height.
As much as I love being surrounded by talented makers and being able to merchandise, there really is nothing greater than seeing people look at your products in real life.
Each and every sale means the absolute world, and I'm wholly grateful to the people who spent their hard-earned money on a little independent. I also adored people who followed us on Instagram coming up and saying hi. One lady made me all teary with her kind words, and won't ever forget that. I did find it a bit funny when someone said how 'beautiful' my life looked (I'm cringing just writing that), and all I could think was 'well, my boyfriend is severely hungover and throwing up in the toilets every 10 minutes, so it ain't that beautiful'! He helps me out at markets around Christmas and decided to go out the night before...jokes on him, he had to lie down in the back of the van with a bucket the whole journey there. That bucket got used.
He made up for it with a surprise stay at Ace Hotel though! It's my birthday in December, so we thought we'd go a bit crazy and stay there on the Saturday, as a pre-gift type thing. It was oh so beautiful, and I felt like I was home. The service was out of this world, with some free drinks after a mix up with the rooms (I walked in on a dude in the toilet, long story!) and a lovely bottle of wine as a birthday treat. We slept like logs and woke up to room service at our door with pancakes and eggs and we genuinely felt like kings. I really didn't want to leave.
On the Sunday (and last day) of Renegade, I left George to man the stall and went around the show to say hi to familiar faces. I ended up doing all of my Christmas shopping in half an hour! Talk about easy breezy. I won't show you my purchases obviously, but they ranged from And Smile, Oh Someday, Oh No Rachio and Ros Sheirs.
We'll definitely be applying next year! Our next and last Christmas market of the year is Brighton Etsy Market at The Open Market, Brighton on 6th December, so come and say hi.
(P.S- If you have a craft fair/market coming up and aren't sure what the hell to do, have a read of this One Girl Band post for some tips and tricks.)