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Searching for Local Arts and Crafts Shows

Print and Online Resource Suggestions

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Arts Fair Festival in Bellevue, Washington
John & Lisa Merrill/ Photodisc/ Getty Images

From the mailbag : How can I find craft shows in specific geographic locations?

Answer:I can totally understand the need to know the schedule of available arts and crafts shows within driving distance. Many artists and crafters enjoy and find it profitable to exhibit at shows, but would prefer to do it locally. There is sound rational in that decision if you are a new artist or crafter or are just doing it part-time.

Also, sometimes it's more economical to hire trusted reps to attend craft shows outside your local driving area. Dividing the U.S. into geographic regions and hiring a rep for each area is one way to gauge the profitability of certain shows without attending them. Of course, there is always the issue that a rep can't sell your arts and crafts as well as you can, but that's a topic for another discussion.

Here are my suggestions for finding arts and crafts shows in a specific geographic location:

Trade Publications

Organizers of shows soliciting your type of arts or crafts will advertise in trade publications geared to your industry. The shows more than likely won't be listed geographically but it's quick work to scan the listings or call for entries finding those within a reasonable distance from your business location. Don't forget - trade publications aren't only available in print, but online as well.

Just checking out a couple of print magazine lying on my desk, ArtCalendar has pages of listing for shows with and without fees. The Crafts Report also has a few pages of listings spread throughout the magazine.

Online Resources

Festival Network Online: This website lists crafts show by U.S. state or Canadian province and you can further sort by month. They offer a free Basic membership and other memberships with various advanced options from $49 to $89 per year.

Sunshine Artists:Another informative website, Sunshine Artists provides a comprehensive list of arts and crafts shows in the U.S. and Canada. You are able to search by category of art or craft, date and U.S. state or Canadian region (or all three if you really want to tailor your search). While you can search for free, subscribing to Sunshine Artist gives you the additional benefit of finding out more detailed info ranging from show fees to application deadlines. Yearly cost for a subscription is $34.95.

Crafts Report: While the Crafts Report has listings in print, they have a killer online search option too. It's updated weekly. You can search by numerous criteria such as show name, date, location, promoter and type of craft sold. Check out the Craft Report website for more information.

Art and Craft Show Yellow Pages: This website allows you to organize craft shows by state but without a subscription that about all you can do - which actually in many cases will give you enough information to find the details yourself with more online research. Subscriptions to Art and Craft Show Yellow Pages start at $40.00 per year. They list events up to a year in advance, helping you plan your craft show circuit and meet any early-bird requirements.

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