All Blog Posts (198)

Tasty Tidbit: Catgrass

Tasty Tidbits on Om Shanti Handcrafts I thought about making this a Wordless Wednesday, but the story was far too amusing...

So Loiosh is really, really fond of eating grass. This isn't terribly unusual among cats, I know. And he gets to eat grass pretty often, since he gets to gos outside with me pretty often.

Only he really hasn't been, much, because the weather has been kinda crappy. Even Mr. It's All Good… Continue

Added by Kate Jones on February 8, 2011 at 10:57am — No Comments

Polite, Relevant, Interesting

Connection So I talked about finding the right place to feature your work last week; this week I talk about the really fun part, which is actually convincing them your stuff is so awesome they've got to post about it.

Getting a feature in one of the big blogs will rake in the views, too.… Continue

Added by Kate Jones on February 7, 2011 at 11:12am — No Comments

Saturday Spotlight- The Celts


Added by Dept of PMM Castle Life on February 5, 2011 at 5:00pm — No Comments

(Almost) Wordless Wednesday

From the ridiculous... (my very messy cabinet) the sublime. (Organized _and_ classy!)

Thanks… Continue

Added by Kate Jones on February 2, 2011 at 11:12am — 4 Comments


Imbolc (also Imbolg or Oimelc), or St Brigid’s Day (Scots Gaelic Là Fhèill Brìghde, Irish Lá Fhéile Bríde, the feast day of St. Brigid), is an Irish festival marking the beginning of spring. Most commonly it is celebrated on February 1 or 2 (or February 12, according to the Old Calendar), which falls halfway between the Winter Solstice and the Spring Equinox in the northern…


Added by Denise Morgan (Helping Hand) on February 1, 2011 at 4:12pm — No Comments

Imbolc Traditions and History

Imbolc Traditions and History


Imbolc is one of the four principal festivals of the Irish calendar, celebrated either at the beginning of February or at the first local signs of Spring. Originally…


Added by Denise Morgan (Helping Hand) on February 1, 2011 at 4:00pm — No Comments

Promoting Tips & Tricks Part Whatever: Features & Reviews

I talked about this series a little last week, and I'm still not entirely sure where it's going. But in the meantime, I figured I'd talk about how I find people willing to feature or review my work.

You've seen me post about being featured here before. Sometimes these features show up out of the blue -- I've gotten requests from nowhere (always a yay!). But usually you have to work for them. You have to go out and show off your… Continue

Added by Kate Jones on January 31, 2011 at 2:52pm — No Comments

Friday Feature: Creations with Heart

Friday Feature on Om Shanti Handcrafts I met Julie of Creations with Heart through the On Fire for Handmade network -- a place for crafters like me to hang out, and a group of good folks.

Julie's one of those good folks. She makes some beautiful jewelry, to be sure, and she spends a lot of time on… Continue

Added by Kate Jones on January 28, 2011 at 12:33pm — No Comments


This was going to be part XCVII.2 or so of my Promoting Tips & Tricks series. It's turned into a bunch of somewhat raw, not-entirely-complete thoughts about who I am vs. who I thought I was. Which might still be useful for promoting your small, online craft business, but this post wound up a little bigger than that.

Earlier this week, I dug up a draft of the next post in the above series. It's been… Continue

Added by Kate Jones on January 27, 2011 at 12:16pm — 6 Comments

Wordless Wednesday

A little bragging here -- it's an empty inbox!

Added by Kate Jones on January 26, 2011 at 3:11pm — 6 Comments

Daytime Meditation Ritual of Hedgewitch

Some might tell you to find a sacred place but all places are sacred.

Some might tell you, you need to be in the forest, or by the sea, or on a mountain, but any place will do.

Some might tell you, you need tools, candles, athame, wand, a representation of The Lord and Lady, a bit of salt and maybe a bell or incense.

You need none of these things. For you have everything you need within yourself, the greatest tool of all, your mind.

You can lie down if… Continue

Added by Hedgewitch on January 25, 2011 at 10:47am — No Comments

What is a Hedgewitch

If you ask a Hedgewitch to explain her path each one would give you a different explanation of exactly it means to them to be one. Like all paths this path is not a narrow path. For me my path is very much like the explanation I will be posting below. The explanation was written by Sally Morningstar. What makes me stand out from most Hedgewitches is I do not do a lot with herbs. Yes I grow them, Yes I have extensive gardens, and yes my connection is more with… Continue

Added by Hedgewitch on January 25, 2011 at 10:45am — 4 Comments

Ancient Instruments- pt. 3 The Lyre

The lyre is a stringed musical instrument well known for its use in classical antiquity and later. The word comes from the Greek "λύρα" (lyra) and the earliest reference to the word is the Mycenaean Greek ru-ra-ta-e, meaning "lyrists", written in Linear B syllabic script. The earliest picture of a lyre with seven strings appears in the famous sarcophagus of Hagia Triada (a…


Added by Dept of PMM Castle Life on January 24, 2011 at 5:33pm — No Comments

Ancient Instruments Pt 2: The Harp

The Harp and where it came from-

The harp is a multi-stringed instrument which has the plane of its strings positioned perpendicular to the soundboard. Note that our friend, the Hammer Dulcimer, is a multi-stringed instrument whose strings are parallel to the soundboard and are struck not plucked. Therefore placing it in a separate family. All harps have a neck, resonator, and strings. Some, known as frame harps, also have a forepillar; those lacking the forepillar are referred to as…


Added by Dept of PMM Castle Life on January 20, 2011 at 4:30pm — 2 Comments

On Gratitude

Male Northern Cardinal I'm not sure how I keep forgetting this, but when one is fighting depression, it can be pretty damn useful to focus on the things in your life you're grateful for.

Actually, it's useful all the time, but that's beside the point.

I started Tweeting about things I was grateful for, oh, I don't know, maybe a couple months ago. I thought about calling it 'Daily Gratitude' but realized… Continue

Added by Kate Jones on January 20, 2011 at 1:33pm — No Comments

Ancient Instruments- pt. 1

Tell me about medieval music, the ancient musical instruments that have survived through to today. Tell me about the artists that bring song to life at Reenactment events and Renaissance Fairs.


I'd be happy to! We'll start off slow, these things can be overwhelming you know!


What is a Hammer Dulcimer?


The hammered dulcimer was extensively used during the Middle Ages in England, France, Italy, Germany, Holland and Spain. The dulcimer's origin is…


Added by Dept of PMM Castle Life on January 19, 2011 at 2:57pm — No Comments

Soon will have doggies sweaters up for sale.

IN the next few days i will have my small to medium dog sweaters up for sale. 


Loom Knitted many colors.


$30.00 for small and medium sweaters - name a color or two.


shipping 4.90 priority

Added by claudia gildenmeister on January 18, 2011 at 8:50pm — No Comments

2010 in Review: Get Off My Lawn

Momma Kate and babycat Welcome to the second (and hopefully last) installment of me spewing my thoughts and feelings about 2010 onto the screen in clear, frequently obscene words!

Okay, I didn't actually use as many cuss words as I'd thought. But I think I was still pretty clear on the COMPLETE CRAPTASTICNESS of my year.…


Added by Kate Jones on January 17, 2011 at 3:18pm — 2 Comments

Friday Feature: Janadebra

Another on my list of 'I don't even know who this is or how they wound up on my list', but it seemed a natural followup to last week's woodwork, and the work is just as beautiful. But on a totally different scale -- Janadebra's Etsy shop specializes in wooden hair ornaments.

Since I haven't got a lot to say about Janadebra I figure I'll go right to the… Continue

Added by Kate Jones on January 14, 2011 at 2:05pm — 3 Comments

And The New Slogan Is…

Sneak Peek (Pink label with 'Om Shanti Handcrafts', 'Crap Free. Guaranteed.' and text that's cut off as a teaser.) I've been redesigning a lot of my labels (you'll start seeing the new ones soon, once I start taking new photographs of everything I sell...but more on that later...) and took a moment to consider the slogan I've been using on my labels, "100% Natural Ingredients, Always".

...I kinda hate it.

It's accurate, sure. And it's entirely content-free. And bland. And… Continue

Added by Kate Jones on January 13, 2011 at 2:06pm — 3 Comments


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Patchwork Merchant Mercenaries had its humble beginnings as an idea of a few artisans and craftsmen who enjoy performing with live steel fighting. As well as a patchwork quilt tent canvas. Most had prior military experience hence the name.


Patchwork Merchant Mercenaries.


Vendertainers that brought many things to a show and are know for helping out where ever they can.

As well as being a place where the older hand made items could be found made by them and enjoyed by all.

We expanded over the years to become well known at what we do. Now we represent over 100 artisans and craftsman that are well known in their venues and some just starting out. Some of their works have been premiered in TV, stage and movies on a regular basis.

Specializing in Medieval, Goth , Stage Film, BDFSM and Practitioner.

Patchwork Merchant Mercenaries a Dept of, Ask For IT was started by artists and former military veterans, and sword fighters, representing over 100 artisans, one who made his living traveling from fair to festival vending medieval wares. The majority of his customers are re-enactors, SCAdians and the like, looking to build their kit with period clothing, feast gear, adornments, etc.

Likewise, it is typical for these history-lovers to peruse the tent (aka mobile store front) and, upon finding something that pleases the eye, ask "Is this period?"

A deceitful query!! This is not a yes or no question. One must have a damn good understanding of European history (at least) from the fall of Rome to the mid-1600's to properly answer. Taking into account, also, the culture in which the querent is dressed is vitally important. You see, though it may be well within medieval period, it would be strange to see a Viking wearing a Caftan...or is it?

After a festival's time of answering weighty questions such as these, I'd sleep like a log! Only a mad man could possibly remember the place and time for each piece of kitchen ware, weaponry, cloth, and chain within a span of 1,000 years!! Surely there must be an easier way, a place where he could post all this knowledge...

Traveling Within The World is meant to be such a place. A place for all of these artists to keep in touch and directly interact with their fellow geeks and re-enactment hobbyists, their clientele.

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