Wow! What a crazy weekend! I’m finally sitting down to take a minute to share my very first flea market booth with you guys! I honestly don’t know what has taken me so long to sign up for one of these, but I think I’m hooked! Although it was a ton of work to get ready for…and I still have a lot to learn…it was such a great experience! This past weekend I got to be part of the Painted Farmgirl Flea Market! I sell my furniture at Painted Farmgirl’s shop in Hudsonville, MI and have been really happy there over the past year or so. The shop has put on small markets in their parking lot, but nothing of this magnitude…until now! This time they rented out half of the Hudsonville Fairgrounds for the show and had over 150 vendors! Over the past three weeks, I’ve been working non-stop. I painted furniture, got everything priced, bought & made accessories, painted some more furniture, and took pictures of (some of) the furniture to share on the blog! It was intense and frankly, I wouldn’t recommend it. On my list of things I’ve learned, that’s definitely one of them! I didn’t give myself near enough time to get all my furniture painted. I got it done on time, but it was WAY too stressful! I had things go wrong here and there and that put a lot of pressure on me. Next time I’ll allow myself at least 5 weeks (instead of 3) to prepare. If that’s still not enough, I’ll lengthen it again. Like I said, it’s a learning process. Having never done this before, I really didn’t know what to expect. And having no idea what the barn looked like inside (even though I’ve been to plenty of fairs there in my life!), I didn’t know what kind of set up to expect, either. I was happy with the look of my booth, but the surroundings felt a little bare. I would definitely make some sort of backdrop/walls for it next time. I guess I just want my booth to feel a little cozier. Maybe something in a warm wood tone? The white just didn’t give it much of a homey feel. And I totally wasn’t planning on this, but once we got the futnirure in my spot, my hubby suggested that we set the booth up kind of like a house. I think it worked out perfectly and I loved the layout. Depending on what furniture I have next time, I definitely want to keep up that theme. I think it lends itself to a better flow overall. Speaking of flow, we had a steady flow of traffic in the barns for probably the first 3 hours of the show. And by steady flow, I mean packed! The show was 6 hours long and only one day, so it was super busy. I don’t think they were expecting so many people to show up for this thing, but there was a huge turnout! There was about an hour long wait to park and then I also heard that there was about a 10 minute wait just standing in line to get in each barn! From a shopper’s perspective, I can see how that would be a pain in the butt. But from a vendor’s perspective (and especially for those actually putting on the show) it meant that that many people were interested in what was going on here and they were willing to wait a while to get to check it out. Now that the hosts know there’s a lot of interest in this flea market, they’re already making improvements for next time! The next show is in May 2016 and they have rented out the whole fairgrounds, so there will be double the parking and double the space to walk around which will be amazing! That will help so much and it will give guests more time to just relax and walk around and not feel quite so rushed. I’ll be sharing posts of most of what went in to our booth over the next couple weeks. I would have started before the show, but it was just way too hectic. I took pictures of a lot of it, but even toward the end, I gave up on that, too. I was just so stressed for time and I was feeling like with all the time pressures on me, my creativity was running low. It was hard to set up a shoot when all I could think about was painting the next piece. Or what the heck we were going to have for dinner! Haha! I didn’t sell a ton of milk paint at the show, but I’m so glad I brought it. Since I don’t have my own shop, it’s hard to answer questions in person about the paint before people buy it. I got to talk to a ton of people about the paint at the show and could help answer their questions. It felt really good to share info with people and let them know where they could buy the paint in the future. I love this paint, so I want to share what I know as much as I can! I’ll be back soon with the first of several before and after pieces that went into the show. I’m so excited to finally be able to share the transformations with you guys! In the meantime, be sure the check out the event page on Facebook for next year’s spring flea market! You won’t want to miss it! PS – A huge thank you to my hubby for all his help preparing for the market and for making those cool lamps, to my mom for helping out on the big day and keeping me sane, and to my in-laws for watching the kiddos and even braving the crowds to bring them to see me at my first show! I couldn’t have done any of this without your support!