75% of exhibitors at the Seasons Christmas Show say that without the return of in-person shows in 2022, their business would suffer, and for some, not likely to survive beyond six months
(Toronto, ON – November 11, 2021) – Nearly 100 micro-businesses are getting ready for the return of their first in-person consumer show since the pandemic, at the Seasons Christmas Show taking place this Friday, November 12 to 14 at the International Centre, Mississauga.
A survey of Show exhibitors at the Makeful Market, reveals how vital consumer shows are to “micro-businesses” – people who found themselves unemployed, displaced, and with time during the pandemic to reflect/pursue their creative passions – leading to a surge of ‘side-hustles’ and self-made entrepreneurs selling handmade products online (sites such as Etsy saw a 103% increase in the number of sellers joining the marketplace in Q3 of 2021).
The return of the Seasons Christmas Show provides the opportunity for local makers to reconnect in-person with customers, promote their businesses, and drive sales leading into the holiday season.
Although e-commerce has seen a boom during the pandemic, online selling has had its challenges especially for micro-businesses, from the high fees of using third-party marketplace sites, competition with online retail giants, and costs of postage, couriers, delays, returned items and lost packages – that are not often insured due to the price points and nature of craft goods.
Some key findings of the survey:
- More than half of exhibitors say that without the return of in-person shows in 2022, their business would suffer, and for some, not likely to survive beyond six months
- More than 50% of exhibitors say they depend on in-person shows/events for more than half of their annual sales forecast
- 75% of exhibitors rely on the Holiday season for more than a third of their total sales
- 50% of exhibitors applied to the Seasons Sponsorship Program that waives the costs of exhibiting at the show
- Top reasons for exhibiting at in-person shows: face-to-face connection with consumers, built-in attendance, and ability to demonstrate products and sell directly
After postponing a year due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the highly anticipated Seasons Christmas Show is back for its first live event since November 2019. The three-day event will bring the local craft and maker community back together to create a unique shopping experience for guests looking to find gift inspiration. At the show’s signature Makeful Market, inspired by the Canadian DIY crafting channel Makeful, consumers will be treated to bespoke handmade and eclectic items from local makers, artisans and foodies.
2021 Seasons Christmas Show Makeful Market Shopping Guide:
The Makeful Market, sponsored by Beauti-Tone, spans a variety of media, including fine art, ceramics, fashion, jewelry, gourmet goods, self-care products, decor accessories, holiday and home goods, and more. Guests can find something for everyone at the Market, even the hardest to please person on their shopping list, such as:
The Knick-Knack Lover (for the friend who loves stationery, flea markets and decorative conversation starters)
- A Little Leafy designs their own punny illustrations, made into the perfect gifts and gift tag stickers to spread some smiles. From mugs, stickers and coasters with clever puns, to vibrant and playful wall art, bibs and so much more.
- Customized wooden cutting boards from Esma Jay Creations.
- Hayley Rose Florals handcrafted seasonal paper flowers.
The Trendsetter (for the fashion influencer and creative homebody in your life)
- Tungaa fashion-forward, eco-friendly and cruelty-free totes and notebooks.
- Knots by Felicia’s stunning macrame wall hangings, plant hangers, keychains, and ornaments.
- Standout and sparkle with from gemstone, Swarovski crystal and abalone shell phone grips and charm bracelets from FlashyFoxx
The Foodie (for the savoury, sweet tooth, or adventurous foodies in your life):
- CoCo by Meza’s delicious chocolate desserts, smash cakes and cake pops.
- 1Spicy Mama’s hot sauces, specialty sauces and seasonings, created with quality all-natural ingredients.
- Organic marinades, jams, sauces, chutney, rubs from Mazépis.
The Self-care Guru (for that special person whose motto is: “treat yourself”)
- Natch Generation’s nature-inspired, clean and pure self-care and body products.
- Billington and Queens’ ultimate care package of de-stress relaxation products for that scrunchie-wearing, spa frequenter person in your life.
- All-natural handmade soaps, body butter, lip balms and candles from Beaver and Wood.
The Ultimate Christmas Fan (for the person who loves a good Christmas sweater)
- Gnomes by Mari’s one-of-a-kind handmade gnomes make the perfect ornament, tree topper, bottle topper, and most importantly, conversation starter.
- Colourful handcrafted bottle brush trees by Abre Toronto
- Salt & Paper’s hand-crafted, custom rubber stamps, illustrated prints/cards, and decorative Christmas ornaments.