SakuraCon 2013 Review: Part 1 – The Breakdown

April 4, 2013 at 4:18 am 3 comments

In a bid to expand my brand, I sold at my very first out of state anime con this past weekend. I had no idea what to expect. I did know that SakuraCon in Seattle, Washington is one of the larger ones. I’m trying to keep my out of state cons to the larger ones so that I have a chance at making back the added expenses. If you don’t want to make it to the end of this post I’ll just say it here: I had an awesome time and am definitely going back for 2014!! Ok, you can now log off.

If you’re still with me, I’m going to break this into two parts. This first one will be just a summary of events. I’ll talk about opinions and impressions in Part 2. If you are curious, settle in cause here we go!

Day 0 – The Anime Con Weight Loss Program

Inside the first ever Starbucks shop.

Inside the first ever Starbucks shop.

I really like how SakuraCon lets you get your badge AND set up on Day 0. This was the very first time for any con that I’ve sold at where I wasn’t try to throw everything up in a nerves fueled mad 30-40 minutes. I had been debating saving the vacation time and just flying up after work on Thursday night (Friday was Cesar Chavez day and a holiday for the university), but wasn’t too enamored with the fact that I would get in around 11:30 or something that night. I had all con to become sleep deprived, didn’t want to start off that way! And friends and family were convincing me to stop being a workaholic and just go up early on Thursday and enjoy myself and do some sight seeing.

I got in to Seattle around 1:00 which was half an hour later than I had planned as our plane was late. Then, I couldn’t find my shuttle and so spent some time in a mad dash ala Home Alone with two checked bags, a carry on and my messenger bag. Yes, I was running around with all my con inventory, display AND clothing for three days. I was pulling about 90lbs with me. Finally found the shuttle and was off to downtown Seattle. Once I got dropped off there, couldn’t find the AA reg so spent some more time running around with these bags. The Washington State Convention Center is HUGE. It spans the famous Pike Street. It spans a freeway. It’s rather disorienting! I ended up crossing Pike twice and by the time I found the check-in, I was sweating like a pig, but had probably burned off a ton of calories, lol!

Check-in was a breeze. Why don’t more cons do the separate check-in area for the sellers in Artist Alley?? I got my table set up and then dashed off to my hotel. Thursday was pretty much my only time to do any sight seeing as the rest of the time, I would be in the con. Pike’s Market was about 10 minutes walk from my hotel. After checking my bags, I rushed down there to see what I could see before it closed.

I saw the famous fish market and watched the guys toss the fish around. Checked out the flowers and peeked into some of the shops. I also made a pilgrimage to the very first Starbucks store. There was a line out the door (of course), but it was fun all the same to go there. I picked up some souvenirs and a decaf caramel macchiato and then headed out to find some dinner. I ended up with Chipotle mostly cause it was relatively cheap and I knew I could get two meals out of it, lol!

The Kimchi Kawaii table in the SakuraCon Artist Alley all set up and ready to go!

The Kimchi Kawaii table in the SakuraCon Artist Alley all set up and ready to go!

Day 1 – Here We Go!

After picking up a Subway breakfast, I headed to my table and got things fully set up and then it was just sit and wait for con to open. I probably could have set up less the day before and done more sight seeing, but oh well. Made note of that for next time. Finally, they let in the public and it was time to do business! First days at cons are generally slower as they are usually Fridays and so people are still at school or work or traveling to the con. This was no exception, but I did notice that people were buying higher amounts of stuff from me than at past cons. My Friday sales total was the highest I’ve ever had and up in the range of what I usually do on a Saturday at bigger cons. Definitely off to a promising start!

After con closed for that night, I went walking around a bit more and found some dinner at a nearby mall and then it was back to the hotel.

Day 2 – Now the Real Fun Begins

Saturday morning, I had another Subway breakfast and picked up my lunch as well. Subway, the fuel of con-goers. I was doing this whole thing solo and so I never really left my table all con. I freshened up the table and then did a quick look around of part of the exhibitor’s area and the AA. My neighbors in the AA each bought these adorable plushie sleeping kitties from the dealer’s area and so I went to look. I fell in love with a white, shaggy kitty and bought it. I named it Mochi. Mochi sat with me throughout the rest of con and attracted some attention too 🙂 Saturday was SUPER busy! It was pretty steady all day long and the staff did a good job of playing off that last minute panic at closing with frequent announcements of ‘Just 10 minutes left to get that item you’ve had your eye on!’. I started selling out of certain things by this point too.

Day 3 – Aw, Does it Have to End?

Sunday was sadly the last day of con. Sales continued to be strong even for a last day AND considering it was also Easter so there were some who stayed home with family that day. I sold 18 prints to one person which was a record for me! All too soon, it was time to pack up and then dash off to my shuttle and head back to reality. At least this time, my luggage was much lighter!

That’s all for the rundown. Tune in for my thoughts on the con and if you want to see more photos, check out the photo album I just uploaded to my Kimchi Kawaii Facebook page.

 

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Entry filed under: Artist Alley Reviews. Tags: , , , , , , .

Kimchi Kawaii is Headed to SakuraCon! SakuraCon 2013 Review Part 2: Thoughts and Impressions

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