DIY Festival Tips From Craft Lake City

Working with Craft Lake City last year gave us a chance to get to the know the people behind the scenes. We asked Angela Brown to give us a little background on why she started, and a few pro tips on how to get your own craft fair up and running.

Why I started Craft Lake City

"A decade ago, I was offered a well paying gig with a corporate company across state lines. For years, I’d been working to get a ticket out of this small town (SLC) and into the curiosities of a “real city.” When the opportunity arose, I surprised my friends and myself by turning it down and firmly planting my roots here in Utah. I vowed never to give up on Salt Lake City again, to replace complaining with positive action.

Part of my vision was to create a DIY festival, Craft Lake City, celebrating the community I knew best—the creators, the artisans, the builders, performers, innovators and dreamers. I wanted to celebrate their talent, proving that the best creations don’t necessarily come out of New York City.

2012 marks Craft Lake City’s fourth year and we look forward to bringing the community a bigger and better festival experience. We’ve added a new category for DIY engineers, and we’re working hard to redefine society’s contemporary term of “craft.”

Angela Brown,

Tips to starting your own thing

If you’re the type of person who is active within your community, buys and supports local – you’re already on the right path to starting your own DIY festival.

A memorable name and good branding is essential. Craft Lake City is a clever play on the place it calls home - this makes it instantly memorable to everyone in Utah. Combining a great name with a nice logo can help make any DIY festival instantly respectable.

Finding vendors is key, as they are the main attraction. They are often eager to share their talents and skills - so spread the word in your community and soon vendors will be knocking down your door.

Be patient. Festivals take time to plan, and practice makes perfect. We’ve been working on things from our growing To-Do List list for months and still have work to do! So, be patient and set goals for yourself. Slowly, but surely, things will start falling into place.

Don’t try and do it alone. Craft Lake City is a small group of people that are passionate about the DIY culture, but the festival itself would not happen without our volunteers. From checking artists in, to running the Kids Craft Area, cleaning up and more - we could not do it without them. So don’t be too shy to ask, volunteers are everywhere - just waiting for an opportunity to help.

Most important, have fun! There’s a lot of work that goes into starting an event of any kind, but when you love the community that you’re part of, it’s worth it!

Make your city YOUR city by creating the events you want to attend, and if you happen to be in Salt Lake City on August 11 stop by the fourth annual Craft Lake City, at the Gallivan Center.

_Read about what we learned at the festival last year by checking out our tips over on the Craft Lake City blog. _