A pocket history of UKCraftFairs with a description of its current focus and objectives, plus testimonials.
If you want to understand more about the features and benefits of membership, we put together a PDF that you can download to read at your leisure. The Making the most of your membership document is a great place to find out more about navigating around the site, the newsletters, the colour schemes, what the symbols mean and much more. Many of the things in the document, like adding listings and events or contacting other members requires that you are logged in, but a lot of the content will help site visitors too.
We encourage members and visitors to feedback about the site. This helps the site grow over time, to further support everyone in the arts and craft community in the UK.
Arts and crafts people have been joining the site for more than 19 years, since the site was launched back in 2004. During that time, the site has changed a lot and continues to adapt and improve based on feedback. The site has been at or very near the top of search engine results for key arts and crafts terms for many years. This coupled with word of mouth and shared advertising helps to attract hundreds of thousands of targeted visitors to the site.
We feel that the arts and crafts movement has helped to define a large part of the countries identity. Many of the famous names of the past were writers, painters, sculptures and makers of all kinds. This site is a celebration of that artistry, independence and entrepreneurship. Our aim is to help contemporary artists and crafts people in the UK to find a vision and realise those ambitions.
The membership of the site continues to grow. To join thousands of active contributing members and become a part of the community, join as a member today.
“We believe in the UK arts and crafts community and our original aim was to build a site that helped that community to connect and grow. We know that the individuals in the community when grouped together can make a real difference.
Working for yourself in arts and crafts is a rewarding, challenging and exciting pursuit. If you can achieve success by doing what you love, then you may be rewarded with two of the most important things in life; time and the ability to say no.
We trust the site will serve you well.” Michael Riley, founder UKCraftFairs
Attending arts and crafts events, both as customers and exhibitors, a question was often asked by ourselves and other people we met. Where can I find more craft fairs? Based upon such experiences, we decided in 2004 to create this Website. The site has since grown, and we work hard to understand and meet the needs of people using the site.
We continue to find inspiration from others who share our passion to support the growth of handmade arts and crafts in the UK.
The site is designed for the UK arts and crafts community. Members can create pages promoting themselves and their work and communicate with each other through the site. Shared resources are designed to help people grow their business and find customers for their craft work or services they provide. Members do not need to be attending craft fairs, but they do need to be promoting, supporting or creating handmade work in the UK. You can hover over the elements of the graphic below for additional information.
Hundreds of thousands of people visit the site looking for arts and crafts related information, like craft fairs to attend or courses to take, items to buy or supplies they need. The site is mainly a business to business site for people in the UK craft industries. There are seven membership types for the site, listed below:
We are guided by a set of core philosophies and principles aimed at promoting traditional hand crafts and supporting artisan artists and craftspeople. These philosophies include:
Throughout the course of a year, members of the site list many thousands of events that they are running. Events on the site are in three categories;
Promote the craft fairs, exhibitions, workshops or courses you are running both on the site and in Craft Weekly. Enable exhibitors looking for events at which to sell their arts and crafts work to contact you about booking stalls. Attract members of the public looking for craft events to attend as customers, or courses where they can learn the skills to create their own arts and crafts.
Makers and artists list their details on the site, including pictures of their work. They may also be writing a blog and including a list of the events they will be attending.
Create your own craft exhibitor page to promote your work and engage with customers who are looking to purchase or commission handmade arts and crafts. Find craft events where you can sell your work and meet other members of the craft community. Find suppliers of materials you use in your work and learn more about what others in the community are doing.
We encourage quality suppliers of arts and crafts materials (locate in the UK) to promote themselves with a listing on the site. Suppliers can write a blog, add events they are running (fairs, courses or workshops) and highlight any events they are attending. In addition, suppliers can add links to both their own website, social media sites and online stores. If the supplier has a shop they can include the full address and the site will include a map.
Our aim is to enable maker to find the suppliers they need, who offer quality products and value for money prices.
If you supply materials, tools or services to people working in UK arts and crafts, you can easily create your own craft supplies page in minutes. Promote your business, enabling arts and crafts exhibitors or organisers looking for what you supply to contact you. If you also run a real-world shop you can include a map with useful information such opening times.
People and organisations that own venues that are suitable for craft events and would like to attract organisers, add listings to the site. They often include events that they are organising along with details of the venue. All sorts of venues can be listed, like school halls, castles, village halls, stadiums etc.
If you own or manage a UK venue, which is suitable for the running of arts and crafts events, promote them to organisers looking for places to run their fairs, shows, exhibitions, workshops or courses. You can easily create your own page in minutes, providing relevant details of your facilities and information for both organisers looking to hire a venue and event visitors.
Arts and crafts clubs, associations, guilds and societies are always looking for new members. They are a great way to meet like minded people, share ideas and get support.
If you run a UK arts or crafts group, club, guild, association or society, creating a page on UKCraftFairs can help to promote it, raising awareness and opening communication with other members.
We have written many pages about arts and crafts in the UK.
If you run an arts and crafts magazine or publish material of interest to the creative community in the UK, you can promote them to a wider readership through the site.
You can sign up to the site as a patron. Membership as a patron allows you to view more information on the site. In addition, you will be able to add your own listing as a patron. You can purchase items via Click and Collect. We do not charge exhibitors a percentage for a sale, so by signing up as a patron, you can be sure that what you pay, is what the artist or crafts person receives.
Every time you purchase a work of art or a hand-crafted piece, you are helping to support this community. It is really that simple. You cannot purchase directly from this site, but you can find artists and crafts people attending events near you. As well as searching the site, you can also receive Craft Weekly. It is sent each Thursday and lists craft events that you might like to visit in your chosen region, during the week ahead.
Find exhibitors selling their arts and crafts, helping to support work handmade in the UK. Find craft events to visit and sign up for craft weekly, your guide to upcoming events in your region. Read blogs written by our members and guides to a range of arts and crafts. If you are inspired, find resources to get you started the business of arts and crafts.
We are 100% focused on improving and developing the site further to help current and future members. We are always listening to feedback from members and improving and developing ideas.
This site has been a labour of love for over a decade and with the help, support and patronage of the arts and craft community will continue to be so.
Interacting with other members of the site is a key part of being a member. Although, we hope the section is intuative, it has its quirks.
A key element to interacting, is setting up a high quality listing, with items and posts. This then compliments each message you send with links back to your content.
If you need more help or something is not quite the way you would expect it, please contact us with your ideas and suggestions.
We hope the Learning interactions document will help you understand the interactions section of the site.
“On UKCraftFairs I got to know the passion and products of many people who, just like me, are passionate about handicrafts. I also made contact with the organizers of the fairs. I would like to recommend this site because everyone can find inspiration, exchange experiences and feel belonging to this community.“
“We have found the site very useful in alerting sellers to attend our events. The site is easy to use, and very informative.“
“Very useful to find events in my area,
Enables me to narrow the search to exactly the area and dates I require.
I use the site frequently and find it very useful and would recommend becoming a member.
“I was a member many years ago, but with one life event after another, my crafting became less and evetually it wasnt possible to contiue. Recently I have gotten back into my crafts and so the first thing I did was come back to the wonderful community at UKCraftFairs. I am inspired by all the amazing crafts out there!“
“I feel I have benefited a lot from being able to communicate directly with event organizers. I feel like my messages are getting to the right people so we all get what we need without an intrusive middleman.“
“I have found that a directory of crafters/organisers is the way to go for my business. A reference. A guide. In addition to making pyrography, an unusual art, more widely known and explained to the public, an online shop can show what is possible with a little imagination and the right tools. These sorts of old crafts should always be kept alive.“
“Very new member but already feel the potential benefit of showcasing my work“
“After someone viewing my online shop Iíve managed to find art space in Dorchester. I wish more craft fairs were advertised for Dorset on here. But it is a well thought out site“
“I have instant access to fair across the country, by region, with contact info. The contact info and the way to build ones listing so that my profile and what I do is instantly accessible to anyone. Theres good links to insurance providers. and great rates. A very positive experience all round“
“Great networking site and ability to advertise events is great“
“As a business we are new to fairs and so being able to access to much information from one platform makes it so much easier.“
“Yes Ive benefited from stalls booking“