It’s one thing when customers are rude, that more or less comes with the territory when you’re selling things retail. But it always amazes me when fellow crafters and artisans are as badly behaved (or worse!) as the nastiest customers. Next time you’re at a show be glad you’re not stationed next to any of these folks…
The “art” snob
“my funniest experience was at a show when my artist neighbor specialized in lampwork, and any time someone came to my table, she would loudly exclaim “that is junk, come over here to see real art”…..(she actually helped me I sold over $500 worth of “junk”….giggle” (from anngardesigns)
The Show Stealer
“My very first show was a 2-day outdoor event. I had read every site I could find and felt I had everything I needed for a great show. What I did not count on was the sale stealer that was located in the booth next to me. Just my luck she was a local lady that seemed to know every woman that attended the event. Every time someone she knew would step in my booth and start looking she would call out there name and pull them into her area. We were right at the entrance so once she was finished chatting them up and forcing them to buy her “vintage” clothing items they would walk on. Then she had the nerve to keep asking me how much money I was making. I wanted to scream ‘None cause you won’t let anyone stay in my booth for more than 5 seconds’” (from Jhpapers)
A little too “cozy”
“I used to do a yearly juried show in a lovely fine arts center and before I received a permenant spot I got stuck in a little room. The vendors on either side (those sassy little early birds) had placed their displays directly against my table so that I couldn’t even get into my space to set up! I had to pull the table out, squeeze around and set up, and then of course I was trapped and couldn’t get back out. When nature called, as of course it does I couldn’t push my table, or all my displays would topple so I had to displace my neighbors, and then the “glaring” began. I finally spoke to the management/monitor who did resolve it by making them rearrange, and then of course I received the fire breathing looks for two days.
At least it was indoors!” (from whimsicals)
The hygenically challenged
We did a show last fall where the guy at the booth next to us had a friend who spent the whole weekend in his booth, sitting on the filthy floor (it was in a functional armory) working on a quilt by hand. The quilt was completely smeared with black goo from the floor, as was the girl; and this girl smelled so bad that I could smell her from the other end of my booth, as could the numerous customers that were making faces about the stench. Lucky for us we still sold hats like crazy and can laugh about it now. (from rocksandsalt)
That’s just gross.
someone who made elephants out of rolled up face flannels, each with a bar of soap hidden in them, which was not their advertised craft, then sold loads next to me whilst they farted very loudly and unpleasantly without apology. Turned out I and the rest of the room were downwind of the incoming air vents so by the time people got to me and the stalls down from me they were holding noses and making a run from us. The organiser is well aware that I will not be next to her this year if he knows what’s good for him. (from BlueBoxStudio)
Of course, to really up the ante takes a neighboring vendor and a rude customer. With their powers combined…
“I will never forget my very first show. I ended up next to a guy selling sunglasses. He arranged his booth so that he had to walk through my booth to get in and out and he was going in and out a lot to help his customers. (I admit that on the last day I rearranged my walls so he couldn’t do that and he had to move his table over a bit to get in).
But the worst part of it was his customers. They would stand in my booth to get his attention and one guy stuck his supersized drink in my print bin in order to free up his hands to try on sunglasses. At the time I was paying out the money for giclee prints too. 16×20″ inch ones too. I think that was my last straw. I picked up the cup and handed it to the guy and informed him that this was artwork and you don’t treat it like that. And in case you are wondering – it was one of those cnavas style print bins, not a solid surface to actually put anything in – he just wedged it in.” (from bemusedart)