Tag Archives: hooping

Vending at a Festival ~ Update

Ouch. What a weekend.

We were at a hooping workshop with hoop “celebrity” Brecken Rivara over the weekend. She really kicked our a$$e$ for a total of 8+ hours, split between Saturday & Sunday. Actually, more specifically, my ribs, wrists, legs and arms are feeling a new kind of feel-good “pain”. Check out my post on my hooping blog over here. I hope to do a demo of my new hoop skillz soon, just for you.

Onto hoop festival prep….

I’m inching my way closer and closer to Maine for my first festival! With only 12 weeks left to go, it feels like the time has been flying. See this post if you have no idea what I’m talkin’ ‘bout.

One task didn’t add to my list, which I should have, is to actually make a list of tasks in order of date. I use the task master GQueues, which syncs with my Google calendar. It’s been super handy in that I can delegate tasks to others very easily via email (for instance, my sister, since she’s helping out with preparing for the festival), schedule when I should have them done by, add notes, and even have sub-tasks. Also nice that it’s all up in “the cloud”, as they say, so my lists are backed up for me… somewhere. I think it was $20 or something for the year.

RECAP ~ What I had to do:

  • Start planning the line-up of what goods to bring
  • Figure out what’s already provided to me, booth-wise
  • Start planning booth out ~ design the overall layout


What I accomplished:

  • Rachel & I chatted about what we’ll bring for merchandise, in general. I think more small-priced gifty items as well as a few more runs of t-shirts will be good to bring. Thinking about setting up a “design your shirt” kiosk, but we’ll see…
  • Learned what I needed for vending. Pretty much tent, tables, & chairs. The whole sha-bang.
  • We purchased a pop-up tent! Found a great deal at Cabela’s for a 10×10 for $69. This will be useful so we can start planning out how our booth is going to be laid out and do mock displays before we go. Also, for the days we’ll just be camping, we can set up the pop-up in our campsite.
  • Decided most likely I’ll just rent tables while I’m there. We’ll use our camp chairs for sitting.
  • Delegated booth layout & design to Rachel, since she’s got so much awesome retail experience. (Yay, Walgreens.)

What to do NEXT:

  • Create/design new products
  • Get products spec’d out for cost/production
  • Create packaging

I’ll update on this in a few weeks time! We got this thing ON LOCK!

Don’t forget to enter the giveaway for some wall art from Alluminare & moi! Head over here to enter. Get your environs prettied-up with Barbra art, why dontcha?

Preparing for Vending at a Festival

This logo that I designed for HoopFest symbolizes the official seal that I’ll be attending and vending at a (hoop) festival for the very first time! I was honored to have the opportunity to design it and be a part of  the planning and strategy of this very first year of HoopFest New England! Isn’t that hooping lighthouse cute?

(For those of you not sure what a hoop festival is ~ hooping or hoop dance is a fun recreational activity. Its the successor to the good ol’ hula hoop, only much more active. A great workout and I am addicted to it! I have a brand of shirts and gifts for hoopers.)

I’m excited, but anxious. Will we be able to get everything done? Will it all look nice and presentable? And, of course, a very important question… Will we make some profit?!

Here’s a list of what I know need to do by the beginning of July:

  • make accommodations
  • get sales permit for State of Maine
  • fund & create enough merch
  • package merch for sale & transport
  • plan out the booth ~ merchandising layout, etc
  • create signage for booth
  • figure out pricing
  • marketing handouts ~ enough of them?
  • get credit card payment set up (I actually have this done already! Square!)
  • gather together supplies for selling
  • and…?

Notice the “and…?” there? Yep, I’m in full research mode on just what I need to do! Yeeeppees!

I want to note: obviously, the first step in vending is deciding if it makes sense to do on a monetary scale. It really depends on what your objective is. It really should be to make money; but other fairly good reasons are to make connections and represent yourself, especially if you are a first-timer and want to start establishing yourself in a niche. Vending is about building relationships and exposure, in addition to selling your wares.

So… therefore… I’ve decided HoopFest will be an ideal opportunity to make connections and meet up with fellow hoop dancers. I have been interacting with the organizers of the event and feel good about showing there, as it seems to be very well organized for a first-time event. I cannot wait to meet these people :) Plus ~ Maine! I’ve never been there and have heard of it’s loveliness.

I have confidence and hopes that we will at least break even. If we make a profit, therefore, that’d be awesomeness. My expectations are pretty pragmatic, but I’m still aiming high!

I have another much larger retreat in mind to vend at later in the year and this one is sort of a dry run for that (possibly) more lucrative one. The good thing is that we’ll have months to tweak our vending plan to be prepared for that big showing!

Preparing for showing/vending resources

I’m reading lots of great books to prepare and one of them is actually Khristian Howell’s Showstopper. The Surtex roadmap is similar to vending so it’s been helpful as a game plan. What I really need is a step-by-step guide and this book is just that. I’m sorta surprised I can’t find any step-by-step book re: vending your crafts step-by-step. If anyone knows of a book, please leave a comment and let me know!

Some useful links are:

Tips on preparing for a craft show

How to Sell at Craft Fairs and Shows

I’m also thinking about picking up this book on Kindle, which seems to have gotten some great reviews and has a pretty good section on showing at craft fairs:

The Handmade Marketplace: How to Sell Your Crafts Locally, Globally, and On-Line

I already completed:

  • Accommodations / Travel plans
  • Register for Maine sales permit
  • Tell the Hoop World we’re attending via various outlets ~ FB, Twitter, Blog

What I have to do this week

  • Start planning the line-up of what goods to bring
  • Figure out what’s already provided to me, booth-wise
  • Start planning booth out ~ design the overall layout

Here I go! Hope to have a good report for the next post.

PS: If you need you need a logo to prettify your business, I would love to help you out there. Go here to find out more.

*Some links inserted in this post are affiliate links. If you are preparing for a show, I hope you find them useful!

Inspiration > Harajuku Lovers Prints & Bags


This is why I love Gwen. She knows the power of pretty, adorable print. I’ve been a fan of the Harajuku Lovers line ever since it launched in 2005. Yes, I have never really grown up.

You can imagine how much I freaked when I saw these bags at the store. Hoops! Love! Angel! Music! Baby!  Of course, I purchased what they had in stock ~ which, thankfully, wasn’t much. (This is the 50’s Girls print.)


I’m also in love with the line of makeup bags at Sephora. Tell me, how can one not feel elevated cute-wise when looking at them? Color and characters create POP.

PS: I might be away for a while. I’m working up a new home on the web! It’s going to be colorful, cheery and fully-featured, baby! I also have a few client projects in the hopper too. A busy, lovely time. <3

Boston Terrier hooping like a debonair pro


For the Boston Terrier lovers out there, here’s a debonair fella showin’ off his mad mad hooping skillz. Only thing missing is a monocle and  top hat. That just gets in the way of astral projections anyway (…hooping joke not funny to anyone but me).

Not really sure what I’m going to do with this guy. Will he be a limited edition print? A t-shirt? A bag? Nay, I’m afraid I do not know yet.

All I know is that I have to make a 2nd version that looks more like our BT ~ without the full mask that BT’s are known for. Hurrah for the American Gentleman!

new work ~ disco-inspired cuteness

last night a hoop saved my life

Here’s my latest work on shirty shirts for hoop dancers.

I’m digging the disco vibe, actually. It’s retro and kitsch and glittery and, WELL, just fantastical fun. Without glitter in my life, I think I’d be next to death.

This statement is pretty true for me, although melodramatically true ~ hoop dance has saved my life, one way or another.

Hoop dance has given me a focus that I never knew I had. It’s given me a purpose ~ a creative outlet. I love designing for other hoop dancers! And I love designing with my sister. Bonus.

It’s given me a way to exercise, dance, show-off and connect with others in a way that doesn’t (necessarily) require booze and dirty dancehalls.

It raises my confidence, it forces me to be in the moment (great for a brain that wants to hold too much all the time) and it tells me it’s OK if I continually mess up & drop it. Just pick it back up and try again.

Hooping & dance give me the balance I need in my solitary, computer-driven, “mini-screened” life. I know life without dance would be sad indeed.

new design ~ peace, love & hooping


“peace, love & hooping” is a new design for HoopPretty. The pattern inside gives it a very aztec/ new-age hippie/ folksy/ patchwork feeling ~ a pattern that I created, which comes from my Rock deLuxe Collection. The pattern is inspired by the vibrations of mood-altering music and is called “Vibe”.


This design also is available as an e-card. Send on your hoop love ~ to your fave hoop partner, your  hoop teacher or someone you think would love hooping if only they gave it a whirl. <3

x o x o x o x o x o x o x o x o x o x o x o x o x o x o x o x o x o x o x o x


inspiration ~ Papaya!

I’m in awe of the loveliness of Papaya! 

“At PAPAYA! you will find an exciting spectrum of fine lifestyle, stationery, and gift items where urban boho chic meets art as inspiration…

Our products are infused with vital imagery that has been the first of its kind in the gift and stationary industry. We are proud of our color-loving renegade roots.”

Renegade, indeed! Last night, while perusing thru my latest copy of Stationary Trends and seeing, well, a lot of the same “bright, cheerful, modern” (read: “boring”) stuff, I stumbled across Papaya! ~ a wonderful concoction of vintage + modern, overlay of pattern, humming and sensuous color and wandering color. The aesthetic has an overall very exotic/wanderlust feeling to it, only a tad twisted. I like twisted and freaky. Naturally.

Ah!! and check this out! A hula hoop print! Definitely inspiring me to create prints of my own, especially for HoopPretty… !!!

The rest of the below images definitely speak to me, and I could look at the Papaya! site for hours.  There’s a boho/gypsy feeling that I’m really digging on with all of these images. The graphics are crisp (not dirty or over distressed) and completely inviting and inspiring… and shall I say, a lil sexy?!

I feel like I’m going on a little journey when I look at this work. LOVELYISHNESS. <3  (also makes me want to make up new words)

(all images taken from Papaya site)

Did you know I’m doing more Facebookery? Head over and give me a like, if you so desire.

Tomorrow I’m posting more new work! Look for it.