how is an artisan to choose her sale venues and choose them well?

I thought I had done everything right to ensure a prosperous holiday season. I applied to juried sales and fairs where people contacted me from seeing my work in Boston and had twenty plus years of fairs behind them. In the end, I paid more for my booth at both of the venues than I made. Sadly, I had one venue without a sale at all. I trusted that those in charge of the sales knew who would benefit from their theme and location. Looking back the preparation for the sales was what really let me down. I searched for new displays and designed new earring cards and new price signs. Yes, I am slowly gathering bits and pieces to my new theme and presentation for my fair weather markets in Boston, Mashpee and Providence. But there was just so much build up to be let down, hard.

I will share the best part of one of these markets... the views from the car on the long ride there....

This road in no way proves how long the journey was, just that is was beautiful.

Tree tops are glowing in the sun and still full of snow.

I couldn't believe how clear the roads were compared to the trees that line the highway. But I was grateful for it. 

The sky was such a pretty shade of blue to contrast the white snow. 

After these escapades I decided on my plans for the holiday season of 2010. I will continue where my luck has been, in galleries. And in the spirit of making the holiday season stress free I will be attending all of the sales that I can. Buying all the handmade goodness I can for holiday presents. And diligently taking notes on the venues, noting traffic, buying trends, prices and the quality of work sold. I will then be armed to enter into the 2011 season, knowing it will be successful.  

Has anyone else had the same experience? Or a better one? I would love to know how other artisans fared this season.