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Craft Party 2014: Sign Up Today

Apr 28, 2014

by Katie Noonan

Etsy.com handmade and vintage goods

Last May, five Etsy sellers in the Netherlands decided to increase their own networks by joining forces. Annabel Thomas, Babette Zijlstra, Barbara Pater, Karin van Heeringen and Margriet van der Goot immediately started brainstorming ways to attract more in-person buyers by setting up pop-up shops, markets and other events. Around the same time, Annabel, who runs SecondhandSandy,a vintage kitchenware shop based in Overveen, Netherands, read Etsy’s announcement for last year’s Craft Party. “We had just started the team and we only had five members, so we thought it would be a great opportunity to meet other like-minded people and to just make stuff together,” Annabel says.

CraftPartyTwo

Photo von Lisa Scheer

From left to right, sellers Babette Zijlstra, Annabel Thomas, Margriet van der Goot and Barbara Pater of the Ka-Ching Collectief.

Soon after, the team, aptly named Ka-Ching Collectief, signed up to host its first Etsy Craft Party. On the day of the party in Amsterdam last June, local Etsy sellers, neighbourhood small business owners and passers-by took part in card-making, bookbinding and other craft activities. Meanwhile, more than 500 other Etsy Craft Parties were happening simultaneously around the world. Etsy sellers from Norway to New Zealand hosted events, making Craft Party a global success.

Now is your chance to plan your own Craft Party! This year’s event is slated to take place on Friday, 6th June. This year’s suggested theme is Recapture: Bring New Meaning to Old Photographs. We’ll ask party-goers to transform old photographs into new handmade heirlooms using needle and thread, paint or a pen. Sign up to host Craft Party 2014 in your location today and then check out our Craft Party-Site for downloadable goodies and inspiration.

We’re so excited about this year’s theme that we recently did a test run of this year’s craft project here in the Etsy office.

We’re so excited about this year’s theme that we recently did a test run of this year’s craft project here in the Etsy office.

As the Ka-ching Collectief team learned, hosting the event is a great way to connect with other sellers and your community. Anyone can sign up to host a party, which range in size from intimate groups of friends to high-profile events with 150 attendees. Hosts who get 25 or more RSVPs on their Eventbrite page will receive credit to buy supplies for their party on Etsy.

We’re so excited about this year’s theme that we recently did a test run of this year’s craft project here in the Etsy office. Embroidering photographs is great fun, and we can’t wait to see what you and your guests make. If you’re thinking about planning your own Craft Party, here are some quick and easy tips for hosting a fantastic, low-stress event.

1. Enlist other Etsy sellers to help

Having a few craft demonstrations will give some structure to your party and help it go more smoothly. Recruit a few volunteers — perhaps a local Etsy seller — to conduct quick how-to demonstrations of the craft project at the beginning of the party. When the Ka-ching Collectief decided to host a Craft Party, they scanned their RSVP list for Etsy sellers and asked them to help out by welcoming guests and leading how-to sessions. Pro-tip: As an organiser, don’t be too shy to reach out to a few sellers in your area to see if they’d like to join you and help out. Many sellers are happy to share their crafty skills with other creative people.

2. Treat everyone like a special guest.

Make sure your party guests feel welcome and appreciated as soon as they arrive at the party, just as you would when hosting a party at your home. The Ka-ching Collectief made their guests feel special by stationing a volunteer at the party’s entrance to greet guests and hand out small goodie bags with a magazine and a few small items from participating Etsy shops. Goodie bags are also a great way to reach new customers. With that in mind, ask sellers in your area to contribute loot — a small promotional item, for instance, or a coupon code — to your event’s goodie bags or giveaways.

3. Provide clear directions.

Post signs throughout your party to point the way to food tables, restrooms and other key locations. Also, provide clear, step-by-step instructions for completing craft projects. The Ka-Ching Collectief learned this lesson at last year’s Craft Party in Amsterdam when many guests had trouble finding the onsite photo booth. Looking back, Annable says, it would have been a good idea to post signs pointing to the photo booth and remind partygoers to add the #craftparty hashtag to their photographs when posting them on social media.

Keep an eye on the Seller Handbook in the coming weeks for more tips on hosting a successful Craft Party in your community. Already a party planning pro? Share your tips in the comments below.

12 comments

  • ErikaPrice

    Erika from ErikaPrice said 5 years ago

    How exciting, can't wait to get involved!

  • beryluneuk

    Berylune Park St from BeryluneUK said 5 years ago

    Our tickets are selling fast! We're all so excited over here in Leamington Spa x

  • sueboni

    Sue Boniwell said 5 years ago

    sounds interesting!

  • layla81

    Layla from Tigrisa said 5 years ago

    I hope more people will RSVP for the Birmingham event

  • crochetnature

    Jessica Chong from CrochetNature said 5 years ago

    Sounds like so much fun! I hope to find one in my local area! :)

  • clarajackson

    Terry Jackson from Woolderness said 5 years ago

    I'd love to join in however I already have events on 6th June (Church Fete) and weekend of 20th 21st; Beacon Festival but that would be another great opportunity for Oxfordshire Etsyers to set up stalls. Contact me for further details.

  • sarahouse1994

    Sara House from ColorsOfThreads said 5 years ago

    This sounds great! :D I'm definitely going to attend

  • HeatherBuchanan

    Heather Buchanan from HeatherBuchanan said 5 years ago

    I used to host craft parties that involved excessive drinking, second degree glue gun burns, piles of craft supplies, bizarre creations, sloppy dancing, and me cleaning glitter out of my apartment for months to come. However, this type of craft party sounds delightful in its own way.

  • annebyard1

    Anne Byard from CarnationCollectable said 5 years ago

    Hi Terry, I'm a fairly new etsy member and just starting on my upcycled handmade items. Let me know where and when and I'll bring what I have. Have been selling vintage items (handbags/scarves/jewellery) but want to get into the craft side now I am retired.

  • tabby59

    Jane E Wells from PrairieMoonCrafts said 5 years ago

    Oooh just what the doctor ordered! What a wonderful way to be involved with Etsy crafty members! Any excuse for a party!! Wishing everyone a wonderful time!

  • salllman

    Gulabo from Cooldesires4u said 5 years ago

    Wonderful….!!! have fun .. cheers xxx

  • helpmovingtocal

    Jim Thomas said 5 years ago

    Excellent... Have more fun

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