Sunday, November 30, 2008

Holiday Team Sale!

Welcome back!

Now that the wedding is over (phew!), I have been busy as a bee catching up with the production I had to cut back on towards Halloween. That said, the shop has been seeing a bunch of new customers in the past week alone, with the advent of Black Friday and early Christmas or holiday shopping.

That said, "yule" be glad to know that Archeress Arts is participating in the Connecticut Etsy Team's Holiday Spectacular Sale, from November 28th 2008 to midnight EST on December 24th, 2008. What this means for all my customers is that I am offering FREE First class shipping to anywhere, or a choice of $3.00 off Priority Mail shipments to anywhere. Since Etsy currently has my default shipping method as First Class Mail, I'll need to know if your order requires the Priority upgrade if you wish to take advantage of that part of the sale. Simply convo me with your request, and I'll send out an invoice with the adjusted shipping fees included on it.

What else is new? Oh, plenty...
Here's where I'll be setting up shop this winter:

December 6th - BBM/Bergental Yule
Coming up just next weekend, Archeress Arts is hitting the road again, for the first time since spring. My shop will be open at the Barony Beyond the Mountain / Barony of Bergental Yule event, Saturday December 6th, at the First Congregational Church of West Springfield, in West Springfield, MA.
Shop hours will be from approx 11:30am to 4pm.

January 30 and 31st - Birka
The shop will also be open at BIRKA, for the first time!
For those unfamiliar with this event, it is a very large SCA indoor event held at the Radisson Hotel in Manchester, NH, similar in size and style to a con. The original focus/theme is Viking, however, the "market" area will show a broad range of historic-inspired items to shop from. Attendees are required to wear garb that reflects pre-16th century cultures, and information point does have loaner garb available upon request.
Details on where my shop will be in the merchant area (separate from the rest of the event) are still forthcoming, but I can tell you that the table will be set up on Friday evening, and open for business on Saturday, January 31st, from 9am to 9pm.

Featured Customer!
Last but absolutely not least - a big THANK YOU goes out to Carrie, one of my recent customers who selected the aqua and goldtone Rose necklace/earring set for her wedding this fall. This month's featured photo is of her wearing her finery as a simply stunning renaissance bride!
Lovely photo, Carrie, and may the future be full of warmth and joy for you and your family.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

What's new?

Bunches of stuff. While still plugging away at my wedding reception's fine details, in the final stages, I am just barely holding off the panic as the big day nears.

Meanwhile, I have been poring over the possible places I can and/or will set up shop in-person at in the coming months.

If you want to find my shop's full stock, you will find it at Etsy, at
Come on in, there's TONS of costume jewelry goodness inside, and I have plans for other mediums to play with too! Lots of stuff in the shop in the meantime for Halloween costumes, like the Grainne necklace, featured this month (top right!).

I'm also giving free shipping on eBay a shot - for limited auctions only.

Last of all, I do have one custom order in the queue. Please use Alchemy on Etsy when making requests, so you're ensured a secure purchase that nobody else will pounce on. :)

More stuff is coming. A new workstation is being set up at the apartment, so I am not taking over random bits of furniture.

And, of course, I will keep you all posted on the wedding details. (Yes I am wearing some of my own creations!).

More later... And please keep those photos coming in! I love sharing customer photos (wearing my jewelry creations) with friends here!

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Welcome to Fall!

Funny how it seems like time flies these days... The wedding is coming up in just a couple of months, and plans are finally falling into place. Sales are picking up a little, with the advent of the fall wedding season and of course, the approach of Halloween.

However, with fall also comes hurricane season, and the US was graced with one particularly big one so far - Ike - which left some residents of Galveston, TX homeless, and many others only now receiving power again, while the lights slowly go back on across parts of the state. As with so many others, repairs are costly, and one storm story that came to my ears came from a fellow member of the FAE team (Fantasy Artists of Etsy), Valorie, of Battlemaiden Studios. At some point during the storm, half of the roof on her family's home gave way, leaving her brother and sister's room to an open-sky ceiling. Fortunately, nobody was hurt, but the 4 family members are now taking shelter with her in Valorie's apartment until repairs are made.

To that end, I decided to immediately propose a small fundraiser, called Winds of Hope. Under the tag windsofhope, some of us are selling at least one item with the proceeds to go directly to Valorie and her family, for roof repairs and any other necessities as they push through this hard time together. Above is my contribution, purchased by Upfromtheashes (thank you!). Other members are setting up their items for this, too... It's great being part of a team. :)
Last of all, I am happy to say that in addition to both of my current teams being very active these days (I wish I could go to the Shake and Bake show my friends in the CT Etsy team are having on October 4th!), I am also happy to announce the gradual formation of the SCAEtsy team. Interested? Curious? The thread is here:

Sunday, August 31, 2008

End of Summer, and Upcoming Price increases

Summer is nearly officially over, and what started with a bang, then lulled, is starting to pick up again. You know what that means.... Halloween shopping season is here again, and thankfully, my wedding envelopes are finally finished! Production on custom orders has already resumed, with two back-to-back custom orders (Thank you, Christine - I hope your daughter's wedding is wonderful, and that the circlets arrive in time!). Thank you as well, to all of you that have allowed me to lend a little extra something special to your special occasions - and I hope to have photos up here soon from some previous functions featuring jewelry from my shop. (Please keep those photos coming, everyone!).
As the air turns cooler, and as the leaves already start illuminating the New England landscape with their best and brightest colors, I am still drawn to the weather reports from outside of Connecticut. Our thoughts and prayers go out to all who are in the path of Hurricane Gustav, and it is my hope that all who are affected by severe weather alerts this season can evacuate or find safety swiftly. Currently, I am witholding my annual fall clothing donation, as I await news of where it will be needed the most after Hurricane Gustav is done. Odds are that I will also be doing another line of charity-based jewelry this fall specifically aimed at the purpose of raising funds for such emergencies.
Last of all, it IS the Halloween shopping season, and come the end of this week, prices on some items in my shop will be increasing. If you are planning on purchasing something from my shop, custom or ready-made, you may wish to get orders in before Friday September 5th.
Currenty, there are 3 custom orders in the queue, one almost finished.
At this time, I am taking custom orders until about mid-October, so please keep this in mind too, for your costume accessory needs!
Thank you, and stay tuned for further developments about the shop!

Sunday, July 20, 2008

East Kingdom War Camp

What a weekend....

96 degrees and humid out in the hills of Lehighton, Pennsylvania this weekend, and this year's turnout for the event proved to reflect the gas prices as well. With Pennsic approaching in one week for some (others have already left for the event), it would seem a lot of the further-traveled SCAdians opted to skip this event in favor of saving a few pennies for gas for the long trip to Slippery Rock, PA, not much longer from now.

That said, I thought I would share a couple of shots taken of myself not only wearing some of my own pieces, but of other artisans out on Etsy and at-large as well.

This Irish overdress was commissioned by The Wenches' Wardrobe on Etsy (also found on eBay), who did wonderful work on this piece. The circlet is sterling silver, by Todd Alan Studios - sadly he is no longer selling circlets but you can find similar ones under "wedding tiaras" in his shop. This one was a gift for me from my husband, for my Award of Arms, an SCA award denoting my elevation to becoming a "lady of the court", in the summer of 2000. The bracelet, necklace, and hair sticks (hairsticks not shown, unfortunately), are all my creations, and can be found at Archeress Arts on Etsy or under my seller ID of archeress on eBay.

This past weekend also proved to be "extreme conditions" for wear of my jewelry. Rather than sell the jewelry I have now sweated on and had sunblock wear off onto, I will be replacing the pieces I took out of the collection to wear for display, and will replace them with fresh new identical jewelry pieces.
Overall, these pieces worked great with The Wenches Wardrobe's dress, and I look forward to making more pieces that go with this outfit!

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Where does the time go?!?

June's just flown right out the window, and I am staring at my schedule, looking at a whole bunch of changes and the elusive free weekend.

Due to an unforseen but happy situation, I will not be merchanting at the East Kingdom War Camp in Lehighton, PA on July 19th. Instead, I am going to focus what little spare time I have after that date on building stock for Halloween, in-between wedding reception planning.

Reception planning is coming along well, so far. We have the hall, the handmade Save the Date cards are slowly going out, invitations are on order, and I should have those envelopes here for hand-calligraphing them prior to our vacation.

In case I forgot to mention it, the shop will be CLOSED for the duration of August 2 to August 10. No orders will be processed until the 11th, when normal shipping resumes.

The cutoff date for custom orders before then is fast approaching. I will try to accomodate on a first-come, first-served basis anyone who sees something they want but need it in another color from my shop... However, once 7-7-08 hits, I turn into a pumpkin, and this fairytale of "free time" really has to be put aside for a project due on the 19th.

There will be another cutoff date later on, due to the wedding planning.

D-day is November 8th, 2008 - and that means missing out on one of the CT Etsy Street team's shows. As it is, I have missed a few shows, and feel it may be best to plan for one big "show" in the SCA this winter: Birka. That's not until January.... but that is a realistic goal, provided we don't have any issues with finding a house after the wedding.

The shop is still open during all of this. You're more than welcome to browse around!
But I'm going to have to start turning down custom requests soon, due to this time crunch.

Monday, June 2, 2008

Anklets for Awareness

This past winter, a friend of mine was diagnosed with breast cancer. She's not the first friend or family member (she's like a sister to me) whom I have known to have breast cancer or fight it off. My late grandmother had it, a former coworker of mine had it, and now, MaryJo has it. I thought of some way to show my support, not just for her, but for all breast cancer patients and survivors.

What I came up with was a variation on one of the belled anklets I had just started crafting in my Etsy shop. I first came across something similar in college, although, not for a particular cause.

Each anklet is beaded with metallic pink fire polished beads, and dipped pink 6mm glass round beads. 4 sections of silver plated bells hang from each anklet, chiming audibly in light tinkling tones, and at center, a single pink ribbon breast cancer awareness metal charm dangles to display the wearer's support and awareness.

These anklets sell for $17.00 each, with $12.00 of each purchase donated to the American Cancer Society for breast cancer awareness. I am only selling them in my Etsy shop or in-person (I hope to have a few for my booth at East Kingdom War Camp in Lehighton, PA this July).

I will be making these for as long as I have supplies, and the time to do so. (At some point I will need to take a break for vacation, and our wedding reception, etc). So if you see a "temporarily sold out" note on the listing for these in my Etsy shop, please be patient - more may be on its way, as long as I have the time to make them.

So far, I have received a number of orders, and am floored at my friends' generosity and support for MaryJo and others.

I really look forward to listing more in the future, so keep an eye out! 3 are being listed today, 6-2-08 - more to follow, possibly next Sunday, 6-8-08.

Monday, May 12, 2008

What's New at Archeress Arts

New Shipping Rates, Updated FAQ:
By now, most of you have noticed that the USPS rates have increased as of today, 5-12-08. Some of my shipping rates have changed a little, others have actually lowered for the first item, and sadly, others have increased a bit more noticeably. I continue to hope that my prices for shipping remain low and competitive, and to further explain my shipping fees and policies, I have updated my About Me page on eBay to feature a more explanatory FAQ.

If you have a question that's not featured in that FAQ, and think it should be, please feel free to post here or privately with your suggestions on anything I may have missed.

New Items!
Belled Anklets have been appearing in my Etsy shop lately, attracting both visual and audible attention. These little pieces of wearable art are a great fashion statement, wonderful audible accents for bellydancers and morris dancers alike, and also work as a low-tech lo-jack! (But you might not want to wear these while at study hall or in a library...)

For the discerning rogue, I have also started a line of hat bands. Since each one is custom-made, all interested shoppers should measure the circumerence of their cap for a proper fit. These pieces are easily pinned into place if you don't have your hat pinned up on one side, and can be fitted with charms to match your personality.

Summer is approaching quickly, and faire season is winding up! As a little "thank you" to my many repeat customers, beginning this week I will be including 10% off coupons with your second visit to my Etsy shop or eBay listings (not second or more item of the first visit). I also plan on continuing the contests here, and would love to be able to post shots of my clients wearing their "sunday best" with a piece I've made for them. So please, if you have any testimonials or pictures of yourself in garb or costume wearing one of my pieces of jewelry, send 'em in (and please keep it PG, people!).

Where will I be next?
I am planning on merchanting at East Kingdom War Camp for the first time. Further information about the event (when, where, etc) can be found at:

For those new to the event, this site features merchants in a shaded grove area, as well as many participatory activities, and camping. There will be plenty to observe, as well, including archery, fencing, fighting, and a royal court at the end of the day, and swimming in the pool on site during daylight hours (no lifeguard on duty, byo swimsuit!).


Have a wonderful summer season, everyone, and I hope to hear from you soon!

Monday, April 14, 2008


Archeress Arts will be appearing at an SCA event in Meriden, CT, on Saturday, 4-19-08.

Please look for me at Balfar's Challenge with many other fine handmade merchants and sellers of fine goods! My tent will be near the archery field, and directions and details on the event may be found at:

The weather promises to be fair and dry, and I look forward to seeing many familiar faces and hopefully a few new ones there!

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

What's New?

A few things have happened since my last posting here...

On Leap Day, 2-29-08, my fiancee and I were married, after dating for 8 years, and knowing each other for a good 15 years or so. The ceremony was small and wonderful, and we are planning a larger reception party for later on in the fall for extended family and friends.

I also received a wonderful wedding "gift" from Mrs. Karen Norman, of the Auctioneer's Wife blog - an interview!

And I have recently joined FAEetsy - a "street team" dedicated to fantasy-themed arts on Etsy.
You can find out more about the group here:

All in all, things are winding up fairly well as the ides approach. My final scribal projects for the Society for Creative Anachronism are finishing up tonight, leaving me a nice long break until November 1st, to tend to a house hunt, our wedding, and of course, new inventory!

Speaking of the shop...

I will be attending I-CON in SUNY Stony Brook (Long Island, NY) on Saturday, April 5th, although not running a booth there. If you happen to see me walking around (I will post a picture here in advance), I will have a pouch of business cards with me to hand out, and my ad will be in the pocket schedule. Although I am not actively selling at the convention, I would be more than happy to talk about commissions while present. I am really excited about getting some fresh air with my husband, and of course, the opportunity to meet Billy West, the voice talent of Fry in Futurama - and also voice talent for the starring roles in the Ren and Stimpy show.

Other plans are still being cooked up - and hopefully there will be at least one craft show in the works for this spring. If there is, I will announce it here!

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Away For The Weekend....

Please note that Archeress Arts will be closed from Friday, February 29th, to Sunday evening, March 2nd. All orders placed before 7am Eastern on 2-29-08 will be shipped out the same day. All remaining orders placed by Sunday, 3-2-08, will be shipped on Monday, March 3rd. I will be out of town during this time, and will not be able to answer any emails or calls - but will be back to answer questions and package up orders afterward.

In the meantime, stay tuned! March is just around the corner, along with a new monthly contest, the announcement of which necklace prices will be changing, and a little something special from Karen at The Auctioneer's Wife. Her blog is linked in the sidebar, feel free to stop in and pay a visit!

Thank you again for stopping by, and I hope everyone has a wonderful weekend!

(By the way, the picture above is a card I painted about 3 years ago for a friend. The birds are based on two found in The Sforza Hours, an illuminated manuscript from 1400's Italy.)

Monday, February 25, 2008

New Home, New Payment Method!

Last week, I did a little research and came across an auction site called For those who aren't familiar with it, this site does not charge listing fees, and is still running a 50% off lifetime seller+ membership for the remainder of February. Seller+ accounts cost $49.99 during the sale, and include free shops, a 2% final value fee, and a setup similar to that of eBay - making integration that much easier.

On a similar note, I am now accepting credit card payments through Google Checkout. No more fees like PayPal has, and easy to use. I am still accepting payments by PayPal, however, Google Checkout has proven itself the simpler and easier of the two, and more cost-effective to everyone all-around.
If you're curious about the new site, I've added a link to the right. Meanwhile, Etsy has been keeping me busy, and I've picked up a few ideas of what to buy there for Mother's Day.

Friday, February 22, 2008

Viva la Revolution!

It's been a busy week!

Despite the sellers and buyers strike on eBay, I have been researching new places to settle in for my auction services, while increasing my inventory over on I see fellow competitors from eBay are finding a good home over on Etsy, where the market is just flooded with jewelry artisans of all types - and this is a good thing. Etsy now has a LOT more selection as a result, and the atmosphere is a lot more peaceful and professional there. We are all striving for the promotion of handmade goods, and independent artisans, and Etsy certainly respects our needs and way of life.

While setting sail for new horizons, away from eBay, I may have found a new location for my auction services, as mentioned above. This morning, I signed up (SEVERAL auction sites are hosting membership discounts for eBay refugees this week!), and am working on setting up another new shop on this alternative auction site.

I have been grateful for the support my friends, fellow Etsians, and fellow "FeeBay" refugees have lended me. I especially feel bad for those fellow sellers who had relied on eBay as a primary source of income, and goodness knows, I had relied on it too to help pad the cost of my upcoming wedding. But these things are not etched in stone, and thankfully there are other options worth checking out.

eBay's loss is another auction site's gain, so it's going to take a bit of exploration, and a lot more promotion, to help bring these other auction sites into the limelite that eBay has held for many years.

Thank you all so much for hanging in there with me, and thanks for being patient as I test the waters of a new place to explore and set up shop!

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

eBay's New Policies, Upcoming Price Increases, & Sales

By now most of you have heard about eBay's new policies, which will go into effect on February 20th.
Lower insertion fees for sellers, free gallery... with the fine print spelling out that sellers will also be subject to a 3.5% Final Value Fee increase across the board. With the structured system set up as it currently is, despite the savings eBay is currently lauding, there will still be more fees on top of their existing fee structure, and many sellers, myself included, are forced to take a good hard look at how we sell on eBay.

I cannot help but sympathize with those who have already looked at other auction sites and moved away, but eBay has been a part of my business for many many years. Although I will not be disappearing from eBay entirely, I plan on updating my pricing schedule on March 2nd, and will limit the total number of auctions I list on eBay in a month. As a small seller, this may be but a drop in the bucket, but with the opportunity to sell in the flat-fee structured artisan market that is Etsy, there is yet some balance to be found.

So what does this mean for my customers?

Simple. Although I am keeping a closer eye on the number of eBay auctions I have in a month, I am increasing the number of items in my shop inventory on Etsy. This is a benefit - items are ready made, and can easily be stocked so that there is no fighting with other buyers over my items. Of course there will still be the issue of squeezing in time in my schedule, as before, for commission work, but this is still a boon to buyers looking for something right away at a flat price.

Further combatting the rising costs of eBay, my blog here will feature a contest each month, for one customer to receive a discount that can be applied to a purchase in either my Etsy shop or on my eBay listings. There will also be occasional sales, and yes those contest winnings can be combined with sales.

Last of all, shipping costs will continue to be kept as low as possible. Free first class shipping is still offered for purchases of $50.00 or more, and even though there will still be some things I cannot control, like the rising cost of plating on my metal parts, I can at least provide sufficient notification in advance to my customers of upcoming price increases, postal hikes, sales, and other items that may be of assistance in keeping costs down for all of us.

eBay's new policies are a minor setback, but rest assured, I can and will work around this, and hope you will be there with me as 2008 opens up to a year of promise.

Monday, February 11, 2008

Featured Items, Testimonials, and a Contest!

Welcome back. By now you have noticed a few additions to the site - a featured item, a schedule of events, and a few tweaks here and there.

Featured Item:
Each month, you will see an image of a featured item on this page, for a featured holiday or activity. These items may be limited runs for only a certain time of the year, or may be rare due to materials availability. I would like to take this one step further, however, and need your help....

Customer Testimonials:
I would love to hear from you! Although my business is small, it really makes my day to know that I have made someone else's day special. Please pay it forward, and write to me with any positive commentary you may have. Spread the word!

CONTEST! - The Color of Love
Red is the color of love and passion, and is more than just a Valentine's Day theme. Send me a picture of you wearing something red of mine that you have purchased (please keep it PG!), with a maximum size of 700 pixels in any direction, and I will select a winner on March 2, 2008. The winning photo will be published here in this blog (reduced to fit), with a gift certificate of 10% off any purchase in my Etsy store.

Good luck!


Welcome to my shop blog!

Some years ago, what began with a few sales of beanie babies on eBay has since grown into a hobby that is a business, and a business that is a hobby. It's been a pleasure working with many customers over the years, and although I believe my eBay business will be shrinking a little in the coming years (more about that later) due to recent policy changes there, I have been enjoying my new home in the artisan community that is Etsy, and have treasured the support of friends, fans, and family alike since picking this up.

As life tends to get a bit hectic at times, I may not be able to post here on a frequent basis. I will, however, continue to post updates as I can, about policy updates, new styles, new products, and whatever else may come up. I am open to ideas, and commissions, depending on material availability and time, and would love to hear any constructive input you may have as well.

Thank you again, and as things get rolling here, I will keep you all posted, so to speak. :)