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May 2017

Merchant Tales – Blackstone Raid 2017

May 1, 2017 | Artist Life

This past weekend we were at Blackstone Raid, an SCA event. There was swordfighting, thunderstorms, music, rain, two derecho hits, lots of mead, oppressive heat, and art.

We had a WONDERFUL time!

Now, for those who don’t know, I’m also a jeweler and I specialize in historical jewelry. I and my family are members of the SCA and we’re frequently found at local events selling my work. My husband Brian partakes in the fencing activities and he’s also starting to get involved with the bardic (music) circles. This past weekend was the event Blackstone Raid, and it’s small but great for the soul. Very laid back, and while yes, we’re there to sell, we’re also there to enjoy ourselves. In addition to lots of fighting, there’s an Arts & Sciences competition/display, and lots of revelry.

In preparation for the event, Brian cut a garnet to reproduce one found in the Cheapside Hoard. If you click that link, you’ll see the original in a small group of four gems about two thirds down the page. He did the math, found a garnet in his collection that would get him something REALLY close to the correct size, and began cutting! Brian documented his cutting process, his math, and got all of his references together in preparation for the event. On Saturday, he entered his piece into the Competition, and he won Queen’s Choice and Baroness’s Choice! On the downside of things, we did have TWO derechos roll over us, and many tents were flattened. We survived unscathed, but two of our merchant friends did not. Calontir Trim, purveyors of beautiful clothing trim, and Egil’s Woodstuffs, both went down in the storm. Luckily, there were many hands available to mitigate the damage and to help with cleanup, including the children the next day. I was in our camping tent trying to calm the Little One during the storm, while Brian went around with his hammer to knock down the tent stakes and tighten the ropes.

Since a picture’s worth a thousand words, here’s a gallery of some of the photos I took over the weekend. It tells the story pretty well, I think.

Blackstone Raid 2017

[envira-gallery id=”159″]

I can’t wait to go back next year!

About the Author

Brandy is the one who draws the art here, writes the blog posts, and makes the books. She’s a mom, jeweler, and a lifelong history lover who’s obsessed with art.


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