I had my goods for sale at Montpelier for the first time yesterday. I still have a lot to learn about effectively selling my goods.
- Don’t forget your tent! The market was on Saturday morning. On Friday evening that I realized that my pop-up tent was 150 miles away in Keene, NH with my parents. Oops. I didn’t get a sunburn but I did have to model my rather dweeby hat that I wear while doing fieldwork. I always wear a hat because sunscreen just melts off me in a river of sweat while I work.
- I still have a “Meat and Yarn Don’t Mix” issue. My booth had a lot of yarn-based visual appeal, which attracted yarn lovers. But the Venn Diagram of Yarn Lovers and Sausage Lovers doesn’t have a big enough overlap space, so I wasn’t able to get yarnies to try or to buy the sausage. At the same time, I am worried that the huge yarn display was actually discouraging the sausage-seeking folks from coming over. Or maybe they didn’t see the signs. Bigger signs are a must for next time!
- Speaking of sausage: You would think that sampling out sausage would be easy! Cook a link, cut it up, feed people. But it isn’t. Law requires that hot food be served hot, but I had long pauses between visitors where cut-up samples would have cooled. So I pre-cooked and pre-chopped my sample sausage for reheating on a little butane stove. Regrettably, the stove caused samples to crisp up and dry out, and one woman even complained (very politely and informatively) that I wasn’t doing the sausage justice with the dry samples. I wish I knew of a way to better offer samples of our juicy sausage- I don’t expect people to stay to have a sample whipped up for them personally.
- Continuing my sausage thought-process: In an ideal world, I would be able to sell them as a cooked snack sandwich, but being a food vendor is really different from being an agricultural product vendor and we would need to invest time and money in regulatory compliance. I would also need another person at the farmer’s market to handle that. I should look for a vendor who might like to sell my sausage on commission.
- I noticed that of the two varieties of yarn that I now have for sale, everyone touched both kinds but all of the buyers bought my newer yarn because of the soft, fluffy texture. I will add the new yarn to the store soon.
- I am proud to say that I remembered almost everything I would need for a day at the market- markers, tape, cashbox, etc. I remembered everything except a plate to put the tongs on and my coffee. Realizing I had forgotten my coffee was disappointing, to say the least.