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How to Successfully Sell Your Art at Holiday Markets 
by steff metal for Empty Easel

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The truth is, not everyone can afford to buy large pieces of art or craft for their loved ones, so it's critical to your success this season to offer a variety of price points.

image via Nathan Lemon

1. Display both expensive and inexpensive work

Arrange smaller, more inexpensive items alongside your larger, more expensive pieces. These might include prints, greeting card sets, and smaller scale sculptures or wall hangings.

When I set up a stall, I like to choose 3-5 of my larger, more impressive pieces to attract people to the stall, and stock the rest with smaller items. Direct people interested in your larger pieces to a photograph book or your website.

2. Include Holiday-themed items

It would seem obvious, but many stallholders forget that buyers are looking for season specific items, such as greeting cards, tree ornaments, advent calendars, and anything wintery or festive. After all, they can get your normal work at any time of the year!

Spend a few weeks beforehand creating some unique season-themed items for sale, and place these prominently on display. They'll probably be your biggest seller for the day!

3. Offer gift wrapping

Gift-wrapping should be a free service you offer to anyone purchasing from your stall, unless the market itself is offering free gift-wrapping. Stock up on supplies of colorful wrapping paper, ribbons, scissors and tapes, and make sure you keep an area in your stall clear for laying out and wrapping presents.

4. Create gift certificates

Art is so subjective that many people won't know which piece to choose for their loved one. A gift certificate will solve their problem. Gift certificates work best if you offer pieces at fixed price points so buyers know what they're getting (for example, if you price all your small paintings at $90, medium at $200, and large at $360).

To create a gift certificate, simply design a template on the computer, using a piece of your artwork as a background. Be sure to include the words "Gift Certificate," the value of the certificate, and a space to write the recipient's name. Print them out in full color on thick card stock or beautiful paper—you want them to look like beautiful gifts.

5. Get into the Christmas spirit

Even if you're a scrooge at heart, it pays to get into the spirit by decorating your stall in festive colors, stringing up fairy lights, giving out candy to the children, or wearing a Santa hat or reindeer antlers. Get in touch with your inner elf!

Although it may seem silly to you, trust me, your customers will see an artist who has made an effort to get into the spirit of the season, and because of it, they're more likely to want to purchase from you.

In the end, holiday markets are all about sharing the season, sharing your gifts of creativity and connecting with a wider audience.
 

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