How To Choose The Perfect Outdoor Craft Show Tent?

If you are reading this, then chances are you want to buy a tent to set up in an outdoor craft show. At first, it might seem fairly simple. But, once you delve into online reviews, you would find out that a handful of factors are at play here. Today, we will discuss how to choose the perfect outdoor craft show tent.

What are the dilemmas you would face while probing the craft show tent market unplanned? You would feel overwhelmed with the number of choices at your disposal. There are many top-rated brands that have several models with several attributes. Moreover, they deviate from one price range to another.

But, the element that takes center stage in picking out an outdoor craft show tent is its adaptability to weather. Since outdoor craft shows and festivals take place underneath the open sky, your tent has to be able to cope with various weather conditions. Rain, sunshine, or snow-your craft show tent has to hold up and safeguard your product.

In the following paragraphs, we will give you a comprehensive guide for buying the ideal outdoor craft show tent. Not all canopies are made the same, and what works for one person will not necessarily work for you. For this reason, you should buy prioritizing your needs and expectations, and we aim to lead you towards that path.

How To Choose The Perfect Outdoor Craft Show Tent?

Durable Materials

As we said earlier, a craft show tent has to stand firm against weather adversities. Before buying, consider the state of the current weather conditions and purchase accordingly. If you are planning to use the canopy during the winter, the canopy fabric has to be thicker and capable of heat retention.

An actual winter tent, however, can be quite uncomfortable during other seasons. And, it’s unlikely that an outdoor event will take place in such severe conditions. So, go for a “four seasons tent” that can repel strong wind and endure moderate snow. But, these tents won’t make you feel suffocated when the temperature rises.

The weather contingency you need to prepare for the most is rain. A sudden drizzle out of nowhere might ruin your handmade crafts if you don’t insulate your tent from the rain properly. Make sure that your canopy is water-resistant, but when the rainfall gets heavier, you need to use an outdoor water-proofer.

You also need to be wary of the flammability of the canopy material. If you google how to choose the perfect outdoor craft show canopy, a fire retardant canopy fabric would be the top of the suggestions. Polyester is a good shout in that regard, as it doesn’t catch fire easily. In addition, it is durable and water-resistant.

Other than the type of fabric, the denier of a canopy also determines its durability. In non-technical terms, a denier is a metric that indicates the density of fiber in a canopy. A higher denier means a thicker layer of fabric. So, you would want your canopy to have a high count of denier.

In terms of frame material, steel and aluminum are the most common offerings. You would need the frames to be sturdy so that they can keep strong winds at bay. Both aluminum and steel frames can do an excellent job in supporting the tent. But, steel frames have a slighter edge over their aluminum counterparts as they are more resilient to humidity and wind.

Code Regulations

You might not have heard about this before, but many craft show organizers don’t allow tents unless they meet the local safety standards. Mainly, they want the canopy fabric to be flame retardant to minimize the risk of a widespread fire. Your canopy should get the green light if it comes with an NFPA 701 certification.

See More: Best Tent For Boy Scouts

CPAI-84 tents could also be eligible for use in some cases. But, going for the NFPA 701 guarantees that your tent is suitable for any outdoor events. Before participating in an event, please check the fire safety instructions of the organizers and co-operate accordingly to keep yourself and others safe from a fire-related accident.

Effortless Set-Up

Often you would have to put up a tent by yourself in a crafts show. Even if you do get help, it would always be convenient if you can have the tent ready without breaking a sweat. While researching our how to choose the perfect outdoor crafts show canopy piece, we have found that pop-up style canopies are the most practical choices for crafts show vendors.

No other types of tents can match the simplicity of installation that a pop-up tent has. All you have to do is to assemble a few parts and Voila! Your pop-up tent would be ready for use. Other canopies are far more complicated to erect, and if you feel it’s not worth the trouble, then pop-up tents are the best pick for you.


Space is at a premium in crafts fairs, so buying an oversized tent might get you in trouble. Not to mention, larger tents are more inexpedient to carry. When you pick up a tent for a crafts show, you have to keep portability in mind. A bulky tent does not fit the description of a quintessential outdoor fair equipment.

In most scenarios, organizers would allocate you a 10×10 booth. So, that should be the perfect dimension to go for. If you happen to drive a mini-vehicle, you would also need to consider the tent measurements when you fold it down. If you don’t have enough space to accommodate the folded tent, it would add to your growing list of inconveniences.


When we touched on frame materials earlier, we mentioned that the choice usually ranges between aluminum and steel frames. Aluminum frames are not as robust as steel frames, but they are substantially lighter. They are not the best pick to persevere in the face of strong winds, but lower weight makes them much easier to deal with.

Aluminum frames are easy to set up and move. If you select steel frames, you would be sacrificing this maneuverability. That said, you would be getting a much stronger base for your tent. So, you have to make a trade-off between utility and ruggedness when you choose lighter tents over heavier ones or vice-versa.

Leg Style

In this particular section, we will introduce you to an essential “how to choose the perfect outdoor craft show canopy’’ trick. You might not have given much thought to the leg style of the canopy you want to buy, but it does bear a profound significance. Choosing the wrong leg style might cost you precious in-tent space.

You will find two leg options when you browse canopies-straight leg canopies and slant leg canopies. Straight leg canopies, as the name suggests, have straight legs. There are no splayed portions whatsoever. Slant leg canopies, on the other hand, have legs that are bent inwards towards the top.

You should avoid buying slant leg canopies for outdoor crafts shows because they occupy additional space. Therefore, you can’t utilize the booth space in full. In a slant leg canopy, the upper dimension of the tent would be smaller than the lower dimension of the base. In straight leg canopies, the dimension remains the same throughout the tent. 

A numerical example should help you make sense of this better. In a 10×10 slant leg canopy, the top part would be only 8×8 feet, while the base would be 10×10 feet. The angular upper design results in this loss of space. You are losing a whopping 36% of the room where it is already scarce.

Besides superior area coverage, straight leg canopies are better suited to hold sidewalls and other outer wall accessories. The linear design is specifically convenient for this purpose, while slant leg canopy legs have an angular shape towards the top. Therefore, a straight leg canopy would be more functional than a slant leg canopy as an outdoor craft show tent.


The color of a craft show canopy has to do more with pragmatics rather than aesthetics. Any articles or videos titled “how to choose the perfect outdoor craft show” would advise you to pick a white tent, and there are good reasons behind this recommendation. So, what makes white better than other shades?

First of all, you would discover that many craft show authorities make it compulsory to use a white tent. So, going for a vibrant tent could mean you would have to sit out of some of the biggest festivals. It also gives you a great advantage during the summer. White is the best reflector of heat, so you would be comfy inside your tent despite a scorching sun in the sky.

Even if there are no strict regulations about the tent color and the temperature is mellower, you should stick to using a white tent. When you use a colored tent, it would project its color onto your items and compromise their genuine glamour. You won’t face such a nuisance using a white tent as your products will be on display in natural lighting.


It seems enticing to buy canopies without sidewalls as they come way cheaper. Over time, however, you would realize that sidewalls are not accessories, they are essentials. So, you would have to buy them at some point. Look for a tent package that features sidewalls so that you don’t have to buy those separately.

What benefits can sidewalls bring forth? They give you protection from wind and rainwater. If you want some privacy from your neighboring vendors, sidewalls can provide you the enclosure you need. Sidewalls can serve as a fantastic backdrop and allow you to present your products in an aesthetically pleasing manner.

If you do get sidewalls with the canopy, check how many walls you are getting. Some models don’t offer four sidewalls. We would discourage you from buying these. You would be better off buying sidewall-less packages instead of these partial offerings. Buying a complete set of sidewalls is more economical rather than buying a piece or two.

Another thing to look out for is the material of the sidewall. Avoid mesh sidewalls because rain and wind can easily pass through those. Therefore, we strictly recommend using fabric sidewalls. However, you can find mesh display panels useful. This mesh is different from the mesh used for keeping out insects. You will have to buy these as accessories.


Several trustworthy brands produce high-quality craft show tents. To name a few, Caravan Canopy, Quik Shade Instant Canopy, Undercover Tent, EZ Up Tent have some excellent craft show canopies that deserve a mention in any best craft show canopies discussion. After making a simple online research, you can stumble upon some more reliable brands.

Availability Of Replacement Parts

Easy availability of replacement parts is another desirable aspect. If the tent company offers replacement parts, then you can fix a damaged tent without having to buy a new one. For this reason, it is a smart move to buy canopies from a manufacturer that offers substitute components. You can find this information on the company website.

Wheeled Bag

If you attend craft shows frequently and find yourself on the move every now and then, then you should look for a wheeled bag in your craft show canopy package. You can tuck away the tent in the bag when you are not using it. In doing so, the tent will remain in good shape for extended periods. It would also make it easier to carry around.


After narrowing down your selection of craft show tents, you can make a final decision by comparing their prices. Of course, it is sensible to pay extra for a product that offers more. But, when you feel that the tents have similar features, then the price could prove to be the decisive element.

Final Say

Without knowing how to choose the perfect outdoor craft show tent, you might end up buying a tent that fails to safeguard your products. To isolate the best from a myriad of choices, we have attempted to make you familiar with the key factors that determine the effectiveness of a craft show tent.

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