Kentucky Craft Marketing
Sales Up During the 25th Anniversary, Kentucky Crafted: the Market 2007
Kentucky Crafted: The Market 2007 celebrated its 25th anniversary March 1 - 4, at the Kentucky Fair and Exposition Center, South Wing B, Louisville, Kentucky and featured 283 exhibitors of craft, 2-D art, food, books and recorded music.
Based on post market surveys, exhibitors reported that overall wholesale and retail sales were up an estimated 20% over2006; the best since 2001, despite a slight reduction in attendance.
One contributing factor for higher wholesale figures was an increased number of retailers from around the United States that were flown to the Market through the “Fly the Buyer” program. This program began as a way to attract high quality retailers that might not be familiar with the variety and quality of handmade art and craft in the commonwealth.
One of this year’s “Fly the Buyer“ participants, Lynn Alexander, Nash Gallery, Hilton Head, South Carolina said, “This was the first time I had ever attended Kentucky Crafted: The Market and found it well organized and highly represented. I found 5 new artists for our gallery.”
Combined attendance totaled 8,894 compared to 9,446 in 2006 representing a 6% decrease in public and trade attendance.
Wholesale trade attendance numbered 333 shops compared to 388 in 2006 representing a 6% decrease in retailers. Out-of-state retailers represented 77 shops from various parts of the U.S. Exhibitors reported overall better buying trends from both retail and wholesale buyers.
New dates for next year’s Kentucky Crafted: The Market will be March 6-9, 2008. The event will again be held at the Kentucky Exposition Center, South Wing B, Louisville, Kentucky.
Kentucky Craft Marketing is a program of the Kentucky Arts Council, Commerce Cabinet, Commonwealth of Kentucky. For more information, call 888 KY CRAFT (592-7238); or visit the Program's site at www.kycraft.ky.gov.
Since 1981, the Kentucky Craft Marketing’s purpose is to develop the state's craft industry, support and empower Kentucky artisans and craftspeople, create an economically viable environment for craft entrepreneurs, preserve the state's craft traditions, stimulate and support product development, and generate public awareness, public support and public/private partnerships.The Program provides assistance to Kentucky residents, individuals, or groups wanting to develop as craft professionals through economic opportunities and training, to other outside entities (e.g., craft retailers, craft and art organizations, community and government agencies), and the general public. The craft industry in Kentucky contributes 252 million dollars in annual sales and Kentucky is recognized as a model state for its craft programs and its role in the $14 billion national craft industry.