7 Steps to a Successful Open Studio

By Carolyn Edlund


Ready to open your studio?


art studio sign


1. Be sure to have well-marked signs to lead the way and guide your visitors.


guest book


2. Collect names and contact information in a guest book in your studio. Don’t forget to keep your business cards and postcards close by for visitors to take with them!


art gallery


3. Work for sale should be marked with titles and prices. A descriptive paragraph about the technique, subject, or inspiration helps visitors connect with your art.


art studio


4. Provide a welcoming area for guests to sit and relax. Offer snacks and beverages, or wine to create a festive atmosphere and to encourage them to stay and socialize.


Artist Demonstrating


5. Give a demonstration of your technique, if possible. Or, have photos of your process, or even a video of your work in progress.


artist showing her work


6. Be ready to speak about your work and what inspires you. What is your story? Visitors love to hear about artists, and the way they think and create. Your story becomes a part of your art, which collectors will share with others.



Coffee and Computer


7. Be sure to follow up with your visitors through personal emails, artist newsletters and invitations to gallery shows and other events. Many times collectors make their first purchase after being cultivated by the artist over a period of time.




  1. I love this plan for an open house studio tour. I have been wanting to do this for years, but the thought of it has been daunting. Your suggestions seem like it would be something I can handle. Simple and elegant. Thanks.

  2. just another tip that will make potential customers very happy and possible buy!!! have valet parking if you live in a place with limited parking spaces.

  3. Thanks for these tips Carolyn. I have an open studio coming up in a few weeks… I’ll make sure I implement all of these!

  4. Well written concise article. I love the photos! Almost all of these apply to showing work at an art festival too.

    • Yes, most of them do. Most show visitors are fascinated by the handmade art or craft that is sold, and also the artist lifestyle and inspiration. Sharing your story and technique will help sell more work.

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