I finally got a chance to slow down and relax this weekend. The Etsy Craft Party was a success and a hit! We had a much better turnout than I was expecting. And people actually stuck around most of the night! I still haven't found out just how successful the Shop Hop was, but I think a lot of people missed it due to work. So I'm planning the next one for a Saturday/Sunday to give people a chance to get out and shop!
Everything came down to last-minute prep. The shop hop passport was delayed up until Wednesday night. I had promised everyone I'd have it available for download on Thursday but I was still waiting for a couple shops to get back to me regarding their participation (what percentage they were offering for discount). So I ended up staying up till 2am getting that prepared and I made it by my deadline.
Then I hit a snag when the Etsy goodie box didn't show up by Thursday (the date we were given). This goodie box was the whole reason why I did my best to keep our city in the top 50. Etsy had promised a nice bunch of gifts from their sponsors. We didn't really know what was coming, I only knew it'd be something I could use for grab bags by the door. So it took some frantic emails and a lot of great help from Etsy to get a 2nd box shipped overnight. Friday morning, before I left for work, the 2nd box showed up (the 1st came on Saturday...too late for this party)! I was so relieved!
Earlier in the week, Etsy informed me that Kenmore was gifting me a free sewing machine for making it into the top 5 parties. That was a huge surprise and I knew instantly that I would use that as a 5th raffle prize! The sewing machine came to my house an hour before my work day ended. Luckily, my mom had just come home early and found it. She rushed it down to me and I only had to stick around an extra 1/2 hour after work.
That, plus traffic, made me a little later for the party setup. But Greg was with me and Danae and Kelli were already there. So it was a quick load-in once we arrived! Guests started pouring in before we had a chance to setup. But I did get the grab bags up (I made them at work during some downtime) so people grabbed a bag, got a name tag and ordered their drink. The grab bags included goodies from Etsy (buttons and pens), a 10% gift cert to NuBe green and a free tube of paint offer from Utrecht Art Supply! After the first 1/2 hour, all the seats were filled. Amazing! Glad I'd changed my mind and picked up 10 extra chairs the night before!
Some guests had to spill out into the bar area, so when I was calling raffles, I had to run back and forth. But it wasn't too bad. :) We had the four crafting stations set up and filled with supplies. People who came only needed to bring their own scissors and that didn't seem to be a problem. The 7 tables full of people were busy crafting away on mini-paper bunting, mustaches on sticks, party hats and tissue paper flowers. Everyone really seemed to be enjoying themselves.
We had 30 chairs full at the tables, 5-6 people milling about (including myself) and about 10 people in the bar. Not bad at all! Besides the 4 tote bags full of donations and the sewing machine being raffled off, I also did 9 separate drawings (free) pulled from business cards. The free drawings included more stuff sent in the Etsy goodie box (since there wasn't enough for everyone) and a few extra donations that didn't make it into the raffle bags. So there were plenty of chances to win.
Kelli and Danae, my boyfriend Greg (for coming with me AND helping sell the raffle tix), to EtsyRain and Unanimous Craft for co-sponsoring the event, Tracy for designing the shop hop flyer and photographing the event, Emily for designing the passport and helping me through this, to all the shops who participated on the Hop and everyone who donated to the raffles (listed on the passport), to Kenmore for sending me the free machine, to Etsy & Meetup for creating the event, to Abbey Rents for being an awesome party rental place, to Vermillion for putting up with me and letting us have the run of the place, and to everyone who came out to the party, went on the shop hop or thanked me for organizing even though they couldn't come out.
Thank you! Thank you! Thank you! :) Thanks to everyone, we are able to donate $203 dollars to New Beginnings shelter for battered women and children. We are also giving them a box full of crafty goodness made by the people at the party. So the kids can have a little party of their own!
I will most definitely be doing other events in the future now that I saw how successful it was. I would definitely do a couple of things differently. One, I would make it so you had to be there in order to win, just because it made it less confusing. And two, I would make it so that you could only win once, just so others had a chance. But all-in-all, it was a great experience!
Look for future posts about upcoming events, including a 2-day shop hop, crafty tours around Seattle and Craft-A-Roke night (crafting + karaoke)!
Also, if you want to see pics of the event, check out Tracy's album. She took pics all night and got a bunch of action shots!