Artists’ Bazaar FAQ

New for 2023! Please carefully read the bulletted points below before continuing to the numbered FAQ items and application.

The application process is now open, but before you get started, we need to make sure you’re aware of some changes. With our move to the San Mateo Marriott SFO, we have additional requirements and restrictions.

  • Booth sizes and price have changed. Both are smaller than before, which we know isn’t necessarily the best news for those of you accustomed to the large ballroom space at our former location. For 2023, we’ve adjusted the bazaar layout based on a booth size of 8 ft. x 8 ft. in order to accommodate as many of you as we can.
    • What is the size and price of a booth? Booths are approximately 8 ft. x 8 ft. and include two (2) badges for the weekend. Total cost will be $250. The booth fee includes one six (6) foot by two (2) foot table and two (2) chairs for your use during the three (3) days of the convention. You are not required to use the provided table and may provide your own displays and chairs. No more than two (2) chairs total are allowed in a booth. A wheelchair or mobility scooter does not count as a chair. The booth space is approximately eight (8) feet by eight (8) feet and may not be completely square.
  • An additional vending permit is required by the hotel. The San Mateo Marriott Hotel requires that you apply for this additional permit and will enforce this, if necessary, by expelling vendors from the event if they are found not to be in compliance.

    The City of San Mateo does not issue actual permits for short term vendors, so the hotel asks that we maintain a copy of your application to be kept on file, should the City of San Mateo inquire.
    • The process for applying for a City of San Mateo permit is as follows:
      Visit this website https://sanmateobl.hdlgov.com
      Next screen: Select “Apply” then “Begin”
      Next screen: Business Type dropdown select “Shows/Exhibits” and Location dropdown select “Inside”
    • Fill out the application:
      Under the box labeled “Please describe your business” please type in “Vendor @ Marriott San Mateo”
      In the box labeled “Seller’s Permit #” please enter your California Seller’s Permit # associated with Clockwork Alchemy (if you have a permanent seller’s permit within the State of California, make sure you have included the San Mateo Marriott’s address, and the event dates April 7-9, 2023 on that permit)
  1. Where do I go to sign up for a booth? When do booth signups begin?

    Please register through the Clockwork Alchemy website using the Artists’ Bazaar application. Applications will be accepted through December 31, 2022. Accepted applicants will be notified by January 15, 2023 at the latest. Applying or vending in a previous year does not mean you will be considered automatically. You must re-apply for 2023.

  2. How many booths can I sign up for?
    Each artist may have a maximum of ONE (1) booth.

  3. I want to be placed near my friends, how is this handled?
    During the booth sign-up process, please include a request in the “Additional Information/Requests” field at the bottom of the application. Booth assignment requests are not guaranteed.

  4. What do I need in order to sign up?
    You will need general information including your name, business name (if you have one), email address, and type of art, for the online application. You will also need to submit up to eight (8) example images of the type of art you plan to sell. DO NOT include identifying names or logos on your images, or pictures of yourself, and please do not submit images of your sales booth/set up as these often include identifying information and thus cannot be evaluated as part of the jurying process.

    Images can be submitted .png, .jpg, and .pdf files, and must be submitted with your application. Additional images, and images sent outside of the application process will not be considered. Applications without images will not be considered.

    Please ensure your images represent all types of items you plan to sell. We try not to put similar artists next to each other, but for that we need you to be explicit and inclusive in your description of your merchandise.

    An artist may offer the following merchandise:
    • Original hand-made items of an artist’s own work and own designs
    • Any item featuring an artist’s own original character
    • Commissioned and hand-drawn works made during the convention
    • Original hand-drawn items including graphic novels, fanzines, and similar items
    • Original hand-crafted items including etched glass, sculptures, cards, games, plush toys, and dolls
    • Original clothing, costumes, and accessories, including leather goods, bags, pins, buttons, jewelry, props, goggles, gas masks, ray guns, hats etc. Commercial items which have been at least 80% modified by the artist are permitted.
    • Self-published works including books, CDs, and DVDs
    • Fan art clearly showing the artist’s work being produced and not intended to replicate the original style or the official likeness of a work held by the license/copyright holder of the original

  5. Are there any items which are not permitted in the Artists’ Bazaar?
    Food and beverage (including candies, cakes, dried herbs, and teas); hazardous items of any kind; on-site airbrush, enamel, or oil paint-based artwork; and makeup products and face painting services are not permitted. Balloons are also not permitted under any circumstances in the Artists’ Bazaar. Items with a strong odor (e.g., oils, lotions, soaps, and candles) should remain sealed.


    The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) defines hazardous materials as “any substance or chemical which is hazardous to people’s health or is physically hazardous.” This includes chemicals such as carcinogens, irritants, corrosives, toxic agents, sensitizers, agents that damage the lungs, skin, eyes, or mucous membranes; chemicals that can combust, explode, are flammable, oxidizers, pyrophorics, unstable-reactive or water-reactive. Lastly, they include chemicals that produce or release dusts, gases, fumes, vapors, mists or smoke during normal handling, use, or storage.


    All in Attendance, including artists, performers, staff, and presenters, are prohibited from wearing or selling items displaying symbols associated with hate groups or that are intended to hurt or demean others.

  6. Is there a minimum age for participating in the Artists’ Bazaar?
    The minimum age is sixteen (16). Any artist under the age of eighteen (18) must have the consent of and be accompanied by a parent or legal guardian while selling. An adult friend is NOT considered an eligible legal guardian.

  7. Do I have to register for Clockwork Alchemy as part of the Artists’ Bazaar?
    Two badges are included in the total booth price. If accepted as a vendor, you will provided a code to register you and your booth-mate. There is no discount if you only require one badge. Do not register yourself twice if you are uncertain who the second badge will go to. It can be assigned at con.

  8. Do I need a California Seller’s Permit at the time of my booth sign-up request?
    You do NOT need to have your Seller’s Permit to apply to Clockwork Alchemy, although, if accepted to sell at the event, you must acquire a site-specific permit, valid for the event dates, before the event. You will not be allowed to select a booth in the Bazaar until you have submitted a valid permit number. Even if you currently possess a Seller’s Permit, you must register with the California Department of Tax and Fee Administration (CDTFA) for a temporary location at the hotel for the duration of the event.

    San Mateo Marriott San Francisco Airport, 1770 South Amphlett Blvd, San Mateo, CA, 94402
    Telephone: 1-650-653-6000

  9. Where online can I apply for a California Seller’s Permit?
    You can find the application here: http://www.cdtfa.ca.gov/formspubs/cdtfa410d.pdf. Lead time for online permitting is often four (4) weeks. In person at a local CDTFA office can get you a permit that day.

  10. Can more than one artist be covered by the same Seller’s Permit?
    More than one artist may be covered by a Seller’s Permit. If you have separate booths, you will each need a copy of the permit when you check in. Remember during the booth sign-up process to include a request to be seated together AND a note that you are both selling under the same Seller’s Permit.

  11. How do I accept the Booth Agreement as required?
    You will be asked to agree to the Booth Agreement, which will be available as a PDF. You are required to send a signed copy by email to artistsbazaar@clockworkalchemy.com or bring the signed agreement to Clockwork Alchemy. DO NOT MAIL the Booth Agreement to the hotel or the event sponsor (FANS). Scan and send by email or bring it with you.

  12. How are booths allotted?
    Applications will be reviewed and juried to ensure a wide variety of art types to choose from.

  13. How many Artists can share a booth? Are there limits to the number of people I can sign up for my space?
    A maximum of two (2) artists may be named on one booth sign-up request. Each booth is supplied with two (2) chairs and may not have any more than those two (2) chairs without permission from the Artists’ Bazaar Liaison. Additionally, a maximum of two (2) helpers may be named on one booth sign-up request. At least one artist per booth must have a Seller’s Permit, but it is recommended that artists each have their own permits. Booth helpers must have a badge to work the Bazaar. Badges are non-transferable. Single-day event badges are available on site if your helper is only attending one day.

  14. What is the difference between an Artist and a Helper?
    Artists create and sell their work. They are required to show samples of their typical work and to have a California Seller’s Permit. Helpers neither produce nor sell any of their own artwork during Clockwork Alchemy and are covered under their artist’s Seller’s Permit only to conduct sales of the Artist’s merchandise. Booth helpers must have a badge to work in the Bazaar.

  15. When will I know if I have a booth?
    When you sign up, you will be notified that your application has been received. Artists’ Bazaar staff will then conduct an art review for all artists by January 15, 2023. A juried review of applicants is done to ensure that art for sale complies with the Booth Agreement. It is expected that the entire review and jury process will take at least two (2) weeks. After your art is reviewed and approved, you will be allowed to pay for the booth. Once payment is received, your booth will be completely confirmed, and you will be required to sign the agreement.

  16. What happens to my sign-up request if the Artists’ Bazaar is full?
    Once that point is reached, additional booth sign-up requests will be put on a waiting list. If booths become available, artists will be contacted.

  17. What are my chances of getting a booth if I’m on the waiting list?
    It is unknown how many waiting list booths will be approved.

  18. When and where do I need to send payment once I am approved?
    Booth payment of $250 must be completed by 5:00 pm Pacific time on February 14, 2023. If no booth payment is received, your approval may be revoked, and your booth may be forfeited to the next artist on the waiting list. Payment is accepted through the link provided to you in your acceptance email.

  19. What is included with the booth fee?
    The booth fee includes one six (6) foot by two (2) foot table and two (2) chairs for your use during the three (3) days of the convention. You are not required to use the provided table and may provide your own displays and chairs. Only two (2) chairs are allowed per booth. The booth space is approximately eight (8) feet by eight (8) feet and may not be completely square. Two (2) badges are included in the booth fee. We do provide WiFi at no additional charge, but your devices must be able to connect to WiFi. We cannot boost cell phone coverage in the hotel. There is limited cell service in the main lobby. Electricity is available throughout most of the Bazaar. Please clearly specify all electrical needs for your booth (i.e., total amperage of your necessary appliances, lights, etc).

  20. How do I check in at the convention?
    On Thursday, the Artists’ Bazaar will open for early set up (exact time TBD). If you are unable to arrive on Thursday, the space will be open Friday morning, ahead of the public opening time, to allow artists to check in and set up their booths. In order to check in you will need:
    • a state ID (driver’s license or passport—student IDs will NOT count;
    • a copy of your California Seller’s Permit(s);
    • and for minors, a letter signed by your parent/legal guardian consenting to your selling in the Artists’ Bazaar
    • Unless previously arranged with Artists’ Bazaar staff, only an artist can check in a booth and at the time of check-in, all members of the booth should be present. While you will be provided with your booth number in advance, you may not place any item at your booth nor begin setting up until you have completed the check in process.
    • We will be implementing a staggered load-in. If you require extra load-in/set-up time, you can request an early slot once you are accepted and paid. Failure to show up at your assigned time could bump you to the back of the queue. It is requested that you unload quickly and remove your vehicle from the hotel loading area. Artists’ Bazaar staff are there to help guide you to your space, but NOT to unload for you.
    • If you require assistance (e.g., broken table or chair), please alert the Artists’ Bazaar staff. Please do not make requests of the hotel staff as this may incur added charges to the event bill.

  21. What are the “stickers” used for?
    Stickers allow artists and their helpers to set up and clean up each day. Anyone without a sticker can only be in the Artists’ Bazaar during public hours. Only those registered on the booth account will be given stickers.

  22. Can I send someone else to the convention to sell my work?
    No.

  23. Can a parent or friend help me with setting up or selling if they don’t have a convention badge?
    No. All helpers must purchase badges.

  24. Can I get access to electricity in the Artist’s Bazaar?
    Electricity can be provided to most booths if needed, but it may not be available in all parts of the Bazaar. Please note on your application if you think your electricity needs may be unusually high.

  25. Can I play music at my booth?
    Music is allowed at an acceptable sound level as determined by Artists’ Bazaar staff. We ask that you confer with your neighbors regarding acceptable levels and music selection. You will be asked to turn off music that poses a nuisance or results in complaints.

  26. Are there restrictions on how I set up my booth display?
    Securing art or any construction directly to the hotel equipment (such as tables, chairs, and walls) is prohibited. Table clamps are fine—as long as they can be easily removed, do no damage to the table, and do not need things like tape to support such a construction. Using one’s own tablecloth to protect the hotel-supplied table and tablecloth is acceptable. Any and all set-ups or displays must not interfere with neighboring booths to either side or behind the artist’s booth. Any and all set-ups or displays may not protrude into aisles, or block emergency exits, fire extinguishers, or wall mounted environmental controls. All displays must be stable and not pose a hazard. Balloons and food offered by vendors to anyone are strictly prohibited.

  27. Do I have to be at my booth during all Artists’ Bazaar hours? Is it okay to leave occasionally?
    You are free to choose when you wish to stay at your booth or leave. It is recommended that you let visitors to your booth know when you will return if you decide to leave your booth. Clockwork Alchemy and hotel staff are NOT responsible for items left unattended.

  28. Artists’ Bazaar hours are as follows:
    Friday: 12:00–7:00 pm
    Saturday: 10:00 am–6:00 pm
    Sunday: 10:00 am–6:00 pm

  29. Can I leave my wares at my booth overnight?
    Yes, the room is locked at night. However, anything you leave in the Artists’ Bazaar is left at your own risk. Once the doors are locked for the evening there are no in-out privileges for artists. Artists’ Bazaar staff do not hold the key to the room and hotel security will not allow access. Be sure to take all personal items (e.g., wallet, cash, medication) with you at the end of the day.

  30. Can I have food at my booth?
    You may not sell or distribute food to attendees. You are allowed to have food or beverages at your booth for your personal consumption only.

  31. What restrictions are there on selling prop weaponry?
    Except for cosplay prop items that are not already licensed, weapons in any form are not permitted. Any weapon-like props must be authorized and peace bonded by Con-Ops immediately after sale. A copy of the Weapons Policy must be provided with every sale. Please contact the Artists’ Bazaar Staff upon registration and request to be apprised of other restrictions that must be adhered to regarding the sale of prop weaponry. For more information on prop rules and limitations at Clockwork Alchemy please check the following link: Clockwork Alchemy Costumes and Props Policy.

  32. What restrictions are there on selling adult material?
    All material that is inappropriate for minors must be covered and/or stored in such a way that it is not visible. Customers must be of legal age (18) to view/purchase said material. If you will be selling such material, please advise Artists’ Bazaar staff when submitting your application, as we may be able to make special provisions for the layout of your booth.

  33. What can happen to me if I’m found to be in violation of the rules?
    Depending on the infraction, you may be given a warning or you may forfeit your booth and no longer be able to sell. Please be aware that all persons at your booth are responsible for following all of the rules of the Artists’ Bazaar.

  34. How does the San Mateo plastic bag ban affect me as a seller?
    The Reusable Bag Ordinance has been effective since April 22, 2013. For sellers the law states: “Starting April 22, 2013, reusable bags or bags made of recycled content paper may be provided, but only if the store charges a minimum price of 10 cents per bag. Starting January 1, 2015, the minimum price goes up to 25 cents per allowable bag. For more information please check the following link: For more information please check the following link: http://www.smchealth.org/sites/main/files/file-attachments/retailersfaq.pdf

  35. What if I have a problem with my space during the event?
    Artists’ Bazaar staff are always available at the main entry to assist you. They are the quickest way to get help for your problem, whether it be a problem with an attendee/vendor or with the venue itself. Event staff are able to provide you a quiet space away from the Bazaar for any conflict resolution. Only the Event Chairs have the authority to remove someone from the event. Bazaar staff can also work through appropriate channels to solve venue problems. Please do not make any requests to hotel staff as this may incur added costs to the event.