Wells Street in Chicago is my favorite festival for so many reasons. Its the kickoff to summer in Chicago and filled with so much life. Yes, there is also a lot of drinking and music. Luckily I am at the other end of the fest so I don’t get as much of the craziness. In years past I never plan for Wells Street as I should. I have run out of product, bags, and with the amount of traffic (people and customers) it just gets crazy!
This past week I planned day and night drawing out booth plans. Strategizing. I had meetings with friends to discuss booth ideas. I spent days lining up the order for the walls and decided to do velcro as a way to attach my wood blocks to the walls. Great idea (check) Well not all good ideas work out… With the heat the industrial strength velcro did not work and blocks were falling left and right quickly! Thank goodness for a good friend that stepped in to help!
Of course I did not feel prepared after all the planning. Fathers Day was Sunday and it felt like everyone decided to come Saturday instead. I hadn’t even finished unpacking my booth and was overwhelmed with customers. My iPad fell first thing breaking my square swipe. By days end I ran out of bags and by day two there were no business cards left. It was so great to see so many familiar faces stop by the booth. Past customers and friends from all over stopped by the booth. Friends from college who I haven’t seen in 10 years surprised me! I am so grateful and thrilled for such an amazing weekend. No matter what has happened in past years I can never set expectations and just go in with an open mind.
Here are a few pictures of the booth I snapped at the beginning and then as the crowds came:
This last picture was the line to look at the print box. I am going to have to come up with a better solution or two boxes so this doesn’t happen again 🙂
There were so many amazing customers over the two days I wish I could write about them all. But my two favorite were. 1. A couple has been buying my art since the year they were engaged. Each year they come back on their anniversary and buy a piece of art to add to their house. Love them! 2. A customer walked into the booth and opened his backpack to pull out a book. Inside the book was a stack of small bills he had saved his money so he could buy a small piece of my art.
From the bottom of my heart thank you all so much for your love and support and a wonderful weekend! There are three more shows left for the summer so if you are in the Chicago area stop by and say hello!