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merchanting-msg - 6/29/07

 

Merchanting in the SCA. Why various SCA merchants merchant. How to get started. Suggestions on merchanting.

 

NOTE: See also the files: taverns-msg, tokens-msg, demos-msg, fundraising-msg, largess-ideas-msg, hotel-events-msg, SCA-Demos-art, merch-cloth-lst, Med-Merchants-CA, coins-msg.

 

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NOTICE -

 

This file is a collection of various messages having a common theme that I  have collected from my reading of the various computer networks. Some messages date back to 1989, some may be as recent as yesterday.

 

This file is part of a collection of files called Stefan's Florilegium. These files are available on the Internet at: http://www.florilegium.org

 

I  have done  a limited amount  of  editing. Messages having to do  with separate topics  were sometimes split into different files and sometimes extraneous information was removed. For instance, the  message IDs  were removed to save space and remove clutter.

 

The comments made in these messages are not necessarily my viewpoints. I make  no claims  as  to the accuracy  of  the information  given by the individual authors.

 

Please  respect the time  and  efforts of  those who have written  these messages. The  copyright status  of these messages  is  unclear at this time. If  information  is  published  from  these  messages, please give credit to the originator(s).

 

Thank you,

    Mark S. Harris                  AKA:  THLord Stefan li Rous

                                          Stefan at florilegium.org

************************************************************************

 

From: meg at tinhat.stonemarche.org (meg)

Newsgroups: rec.org.sca

Subject: Re: Would it be okay to...

Date: Sat, 16 Jul 94 22:05:25 EDT

Organization: Stonemarche Network Co-op

 

zkessin at world.std.com (Zach) writes:

> dmeehan at HUEY.CSUN.EDU (Dan Meehan) writes:

>

> >Merchants will hire bards to singingly entice patrons to their booths

> >(Hmmm - not a bad idea, if the price is right. I'll have to advertise

> >my availability!)

> I would guess that this is very period. Modern Shops will have a radio

> on a lot of the time, why not have merchents hire a few bards to sit

> in a both and sing or play the harp (Esp If you are selling Harps and

> such) or Hire a herald to go out and advertise your stuff.

>

> Guiliam of Carolingia

> zkessin at cs.brandeis.edu

 

Megan here...

I usually hire musicians to play outside my shop at Pennsic. They get

paid a cold beverage and some couple of dollars in their hat, to

encourage listeners to contribute as well. It works well for me...as the

audience stands appreciating the music, they gaze upon my wares, and are

inspired to make purchases. We have a nice shade tree, and a bench, and a

flower garden..a most agreeable site.

Megan

 

==

In 1994: Linda Anfuso       non moritur cujus fama vivat

In the Current Middle Ages: Megan ni Laine de Belle Rive  

In the SCA, Inc: sustaining member # 33644

 

                                YYY     YYY

meg at tinhat.stonemarche.org      |  YYYYY  |

                                |____n____|

 

 

From: UDSD073 at DSIBM.OKLADOT.STATE.OK.US (Mike Andrews)

Newsgroups: rec.org.sca

Subject: Re: Merchanting in the SCA...

Date: Mon, 17 Oct 1994 10:25

Organization: The University of Oklahoma (USA)

 

In article <8a6_9410150451 at blkcat.fidonet.org>,

Bruce.Tomlin at f555.n387.z1.fidonet.org (Bruce Tomlin) writes:

 

>Or if you're selling expensive stuff, in which case you might want to include

>the tax in the price so that you don't have to waste time computing it.

 

Bad Idea in Oklahoma: state law explicitly prohibits this.

You _can_ post the before-tax price, tax (make sure you

include any county and/or city sales taxes, as well as the

state sales tax), and the total.

 

--

Michael Fenwick of Fotheringhay, O.L. (Mike Andrews) Namron, Ansteorra

 

 

From: Bruce.Tomlin at f555.n387.z1.fidonet.org (Bruce Tomlin)

Date: 14 Oct 94 10:04:00 -0500

Newsgroups: rec.org.sca

Subject: Merchanting in the SCA...

Organization: Fidonet: Bjornsborg, Ansteorra [210-646-6677 HST/V32T/VFC/V34]

 

> From: kate at ds9.lesn.lehigh.edu (Kate Jones)

> I have a question: what is necessary for

> one to become a merchant at an SCA event?

 

Stuff to sell, and preferably a table to put it on and a blanket to cover it

with when you are away for court or feast or the privy or whatever (be sure

to put any EXPENSIVE stuff locked away in your vehicle or something if you

can't watch it).  And a pile of dollar bills for change.

 

Just ask at the troll on the way in where they are putting the merchants, so

as to keep them all in one place where you don't have to worry about being

overlooked.

 

Most events will not charge you for merchanting, but the largest ones might

charge a merchanting fee.

 

> Would I need (I imagine) to

> somehow get set up with a tax number and all that happiness?

 

Well, since in a way it's just a garage sale (which is where much merchanting

stuff probably comes from in the first place), I wouldn't bother unless it

was a BIG event (I don't mean Crown Tourney, I mean like Pennsic) where they

require you to have it.

 

Or if you're selling expensive stuff, in which case you might want to include

the tax in the price so that you don't have to waste time computing it.

Also, you need it if you are (gasp!) taking plastic.

 

this is from observation.

 

Elwyn

---------

Fidonet:  Bruce Tomlin 1:387/555

Internet: Bruce.Tomlin at f555.n387.z1.fidonet.org

 

 

From: Charly.The.Bastard at f1077.n147.z1.fidonet.org (Charly The Bastard)

Date: 15 Oct 94 17:23:00 -0500

Newsgroups: rec.org.sca

Subject: Merchanting in the SCA...

Organization: Fidonet: In the distance...Vanishing Point

 

Yep, first you're gonna need a tax number from your home state and an account

from every state that you plan to merchant in for sales taxes. next, you're

gonna need stuff to sell at the events.  third, you're gonna need a sense of

humor, a LARGE one, for when the total newbie comes over to your shop with a

competitor's catalog and boldly whines 'I sure like this five foot

flame-bladed greatsword, but $300 is too high.  Can you make me one for about

$50?' (true story, swear to Bhob)  Of course, a large reliable truck to carry

the three tons of gear is also a plus, but not required.

---------

Fidonet:  Charly The Bastard 1:147/1077

Internet: Charly.The.Bastard at f1077.n147.z1.fidonet.org

 

 

Newsgroups: rec.org.sca

From: rzex60 at email.sps.mot.com (Jay Brandt)

Subject: Re: Merchanting in the SCA...

Organization: The Polyhedron Group

Date: Mon, 17 Oct 1994 20:41:32 GMT

 

In article <KATE.94Oct13144800 at ds9.lesn.lehigh.edu>,

kate at ds9.lesn.lehigh.edu (Kate Jones) wrote:

>

> Unto the good gentles of the Rialto, my greetings.

>

> I've been reading the Rialto for quite a while now, and have just recently

> gotten up the motivation to post. I have a question: what is necessary for

> one to become a merchant at an SCA event? Would I need (I imagine) to

> somehow get set up with a tax number and all that happiness? I know how to

> arrange things at an event and all that, I just need to know what red-tape

> hoops I have to jump through.

>

> Posts to the group or direct replies are welcome. Thank you all!

 

Well, let's see...

 

I was a founding member of the An Tir Merchants Guild, and I've been a

merchant at more events than I care to count over a number of years, in

three different Kingdoms (An Tir, West, and Ansteorra), selling the

furniture that I design and make. I have also recently been through several

seminars for small businesses held by the Texas Comptroller's office, which

in my state handles matters like sales tax collection. While in the

seminars I made a point of asking questions pertaining to doing business as

an SCA merchant. So I guess I'm as qualified as anyone else to reply.

 

First, I'll have to disagree with the good gentle who equated SCA

Merchanting to a garage sale, and that as such you'd be immune from sales

tax laws. Even a garage sale has limits placed upon it in many

jurisdictions. For example, in some cities or counties a family can only

have one or two garage sales a year. (I lived in one town where 'one garage

sale per year at most' was the law!) Garage sales are, by their nature, a

very occasional thing, not done in a manner that establishes a regular

business practice. By definition, I would hope that a successful SCA

merchant would be just the opposite, trying quite hard to establish

identity and credibility as a good person/shop to do business with. As an

SCA Merchant, I'd not want to try to argue that I was exempt from taxation

if some mundane official started asking around for permits.

 

Here's my advice and experience in the matter:

 

I strongly believe that you should obey all appropriate mundane laws

regarding retail sales. If your county/state/country requires a business

license or sales tax permit, you should obtain one and complete the

obligatory reporting and paperwork as required. Same goes for permits for

sale or handling of food and/or liquor. If you are selling stuff at an SCA

event, you can be -very- visible, and any SCA merchant is still bound by

whatever mundane laws are in force in the jurisdiction they will be selling

at. If -you- are violating local laws, and you get caught, it can look very

bad for the other members of the SCA in your area.

 

It is important also to note that the laws regarding the site of sale are

just as important as the laws regarding your base of operations. For

example, if a person in Oregon, which has no sales tax, sells merchandise

in California, which has one, they -should- collect and report California

sales tax for merchandise sold at that event, or for sales resulting from

that 'point of retail presence'. Different cities and counties may have

different sales tax rates. Technically, the sales tax rate in effect at the

place where they contacted you is the one to use for a given sale, even if

the sale is delayed, unless they place or receive the order at yet another

'point of retail presence'. Sound confusing? It -is-. Still, an effort

should be made to understand and obey the laws regarding retail sales.

 

Here are some examples: I live in Austin, TX. If I set up shop at an event

inthe  nearby town of Round Rock, sales at that event are done at that

city's tax rate. If someone calls me after the event, and says they saw a

chest that I had at the Round Rock event, and they want to order one just

like it, to be shipped to them in Dallas, they pay the Round Rock rate.

But if they place that same order, and take delivery in Dallas at an event

where I've set up shop, they pay the Dallas tax rate. And if they contact

me in Austin based on an ad or word-of mouth, and they don't mention a

specific event site, and it is to be shipped to a town where I have -not-

set up shop as a merchant, they pay the Austin tax rate. That series of

cases is probably the worst it gets, but they give you an idea of the

complexity that can be involved.

 

There are, incidentally, advantages to following the business licensing and

sales tax rules. Anything you purchase -for resale- is exempt from sales

tax when you buy it, provided you are a licensed business. (Though this

does not apply to items kept for your own use, including 'demonstration

models' and 'store display items'). For a merchant/craftsman, you buy raw

materials tax-free and charge sales tax on the finished item's price. For a

merchant/reseller, you buy the finished items tax free, and charge tax on

your resale price.

 

In most jurisdictions that I am aware of, it is -not- legal to roll the tax

into the price of the item. It must be clearly stated and accounted for

seperately. There is, however, usually no restriction on your making the

price such that when tax is added, it comes out to a convenient round

number. :-) If you allow haggling, and sales tax has to be collected, I'll

advise keeping a good calculator hidden away for calculating the actual

price and tax.

 

If you take non-cash items in trade or barter, you should define a

realistic fair-market value for the bartered items, and record that as

price or payment. Myself, I'd give a receipt for that fair market value,

and keep a copy with my sales records. It's a royal pain, but less of one

that an auditor could be if anyone ever goes over your books.

 

That being said, the rest depends a lot on the autocrats of the event you

want to sell at. They should be treated as your hosts, and given the

appropriate courtesy and respect. Some don't care what you do or where you

set up, so long as you don't make a nuisance of yourself. Others may

require a merchant pre-registration, with assigned space on a 'merchants

row' allocated to each merchant. Some events require a 'merchant fee' in

addition to your site fee, or may require/request a percentage of profits

from the sales at that event. I have even seen some events where, before

you could merchant, the wares you would sell, the garb you will wear, and

even the particulars of your pavilion or sales booth must be pre-approved

by a council, for authenticity, quality and other criteria. The range,

unfortunately, is infinite in its possibilities. I have run into all of the

above, just in An Tir! The only way to be -certain- of the conditions is to

check with the autocrats of the event, preferably -well- in advance. They

may even have a specific autocrat in charge of merchant activities. If

there is, check with them and leave the regular autocrat alone.

 

I hope that this does -not- scare you off from the idea of being an SCA

merchant. Being a merchant is a -very- period activity. When done well, a

merchant's booth or pavilion can add to the ambiance of an event, as well

as providing valuable wares or services. True, most merchants would not be

of noble birth, but there were exceptions to that. If you have a skill or

product that is appropriate to period and others could use, go ahead and

try merchanting.

 

I have found it to be a rewarding method of practicing a craft. I get to

travel widely, with the profits of my business paying for my Lady's and my

event fees and travel expenses, as well as an occasional new tool or two

for my shop. I get to talk with a -lot- of people about my craft, and get

to demonstrate many aspects of it for whomever drops by my shop at an event

(I often set up a functioning workshop in my booth). And I get the

satisfaction of knowing that my wares are in use all over the knowne world,

making other's experience in the SCA a bit better for the presence of a

fine chest, or a welcome bench, or even of a set of thrones for their

nobility.

 

Welcome to the Merchant Class. May you find it as rewarding as I have!

 

> --

> Kate Jones                |  Rhian the Subtle  |  [   Insert      ]

> kate at ds9.lesn.lehigh.edu  |  House Cyclonus    | [ Humorous Quote ]

> kmj1 at lehigh.edu           |  East Kingdom      | [     Here       ]

 

--

Regards, Jay Brandt --- Austin, Texas, USA --- <rzex60 at email.sps.mot.com>

Motorola,   SPS Sector,   Advanced Products Research and Development Labs

In the SCA, HLS Jason of Rosaria, JdL, GdS, AoA --------- (Member # 3016)

Owner / Designer / Craftsman ------------------------- Bear Paw Woodworks

 

 

From: folo at prairienet.org (F.L. Watkins)

Newsgroups: rec.org.sca

Subject: Re: Merchanting in the SCA...

Date: 18 Oct 1994 03:35:53 GMT

Organization: University of Illinois at Urbana

 

If you're thinking of merchanting--regularly--in the SCA, keep

these hints in mind:

      Make certain you have a steady supply and a certain supplier

      Make certain that you are making money (not as simple as it

            might seem)

      Provide a worthwhile service/merchandise (my prime beef:

            shops that look like garage sales, with skiffy

            books, non-medieval stuff and junk jewelry; YMMV)

      Make certain you have a nice display

      Be prepared to do a lot of hard work, and do it because you

            love the hobby and want to contribute (there are

            easier ways to make a buck, honest)

      Work within the legitimate system. Check the laws for doing

            business within your locality, pay your taxes and

            be honest.

 

For the record, I have been merchanting (mainly publishing) in the

SCA and other living-history groups for quite some time now.

 

Yrs, Folo

--

Damin de Folo - F.L.Watkins - folo at prairienet.org

Baron Wurm Wald (MidRealm) - Commander Baldwin's (NWTA)

 

 

From: Suze.Hammond at f56.n105.z1.fidonet.org (Suze Hammond)

Newsgroups: rec.org.sca

Subject: Re: Merchanting in the SCA...

Date: Fri, 21 Oct 1994 14:21:00 -0800

 

CTB> From: Charly.The.Bastard at f1077.n147.z1.fidonet.org (Charly The

CTB> Bastard) Newsgroups: rec.org.sca

 

CTB> Yep, first you're gonna need a tax number from your home state and an

CTB> account from every state that you plan to merchant in for sales taxes.

CTB> next, you're gonna need stuff to sell at the events.  third, you're

CTB> gonna need a sense of humor, a LARGE one, for when the total newbie

CTB> comes over to your shop with a competitor's catalog and boldly whines

CTB> 'I sure like this five foot flame-bladed great sword, but $300 is too

CTB> high.  Can you make me one for about $50?' (true story, swear to Bhob)

CTB> Of course, a large reliable truck to carry the three tons of gear is

CTB> also a plus, but not required. ---------

CTB> Fidonet:  Charly The Bastard 1:147/1077

CTB> Internet: Charly.The.Bastard at f1077.n147.z1.fidonet.org

 

Weelll... there is an easier way to start out, sort of get your feet wet.

That's to make your goods, and sell them through a merchant currently

working the SCA. You, of course, go along and help man the booth, etc.,

learning all the ins and outs of the trade.

 

BTW, since we're on the subject, what about mail-order between sales tax

states and non sales tax states. If I, in Oregon, sell shields by mail

outside the state, do I have to charge the recipient's local tax and remit

it?

... Moreach NicMhaolain

 

 

Newsgroups: rec.org.sca

From: rzex60 at email.sps.mot.com (Jay Brandt)

Subject: Re: Merchanting in the SCA...

Organization: The Polyhedron Group

Date: Mon, 24 Oct 1994 19:00:37 GMT

 

In article <782899240.AA02117 at jina.rain.com>,

Suze.Hammond at f56.n105.z1.fidonet.org (Suze Hammond) wrote:

 

> Weelll... there is an easier way to start out, sort of get your feet wet.

> That's to make your goods, and sell them through a merchant currently

> working the SCA. You, of course, go along and help man the booth, etc.,

> learning all the ins and outs of the trade.

 

A good suggestion, and quite period. Apprenticeship to a merchant is an

ideal way to learn to become a merchant yourself, supposing you are in an

area large enough to have established merchants in need of more help.

 

> BTW, since we're on the subject, what about mail-order between sales tax

> states and non sales tax states. If I, in Oregon, sell shields by mail

> outside the state, do I have to charge the recipient's local tax and remit

> it?

 

An unqualified YES.

 

I asked that specific type of quesiton to representatives of the Texas

Comptrollers office at a recent small business sales tax seminar, and they

were quite clear that ALL sales within a tax jurisdiction are subject to

sales tax, unless they are sold to a business with an appropriate sales and

use tax permit for resale later, or are being sold to a tax exempt

organization, such as a church, with appropriate paperwork to prove

exemption. It does not matter if the seller is in a state which does not

charge sales tax. If they take delivery in a tax jurisdiction, the tax

needs to be collected.

 

Now, if they come to you in Oregon, and receive the shields from you within

Oregon's borders, there is no tax to pay. They get the benefit of Oregon's

lack of a sales tax. (Sigh. It was -so- much simpler when I was selling in

Oregon.)

 

Incidentally, in many jurisdictions, a 501 C(3) tax-exempt organization,

such as the SCA, *IS* exempt from paying sales tax on items purchased for

use by the group. The necessary paperwork must be filed by the group, and

the merchandise must be for group use and not an individual. I'm currently

investigating this possibility for some regalia I'm bidding on construction

of in Ansteorra. It might save the Kingdom a few bucks if we can do it that

way.

 

--

Regards, Jay Brandt --- Austin, Texas, USA --- <rzex60 at email.sps.mot.com>

In the SCA, HLS Jason of Rosaria, JdL, GdS, AoA --------- (Member # 3016)

Owner / Designer / Craftsman ------------------------- Bear Paw Woodworks

 

 

From: dmontuor at telenet.com (Dave Montuori)

Newsgroups: rec.org.sca

Subject: Re: Merchanting in the SCA...

Date: 25 Oct 94 13:46:38 GMT

 

Jay Brandt <rzex60 at email.sps.mot.com> wrote:

>Suze.Hammond at f56.n105.z1.fidonet.org (Suze Hammond) wrote:

>> BTW, since we're on the subject, what about mail-order between sales tax

>> states and non sales tax states. If I, in Oregon, sell shields by mail

>> outside the state, do I have to charge the recipient's local tax and remit

>> it?

>

>An unqualified YES.

 

And now I must qualify it, since an unqualified yes is dead wrong. The

examples given make it perfectly clear that Texas answers "Yes." But...

 

Consider Virginia. If the seller is in-state, the seller must collect the

sales tax and send it in. (Given: the buyer takes delivery in-state.)

 

If the seller is out-of-state, BUT maintains a point of presence in

Virginia (e.g. Sears or M. Ward has store in Va. but their mail-order

biz is elsewhere), the seller must collect and remit the tax.

 

If the seller has no permanent presence in Virginia (mail-order-only

places, for example) then the seller need not collect the tax. In that

case, it is the BUYER'S responsibility to send the tax in directly to

Richmond themselves!?! (Sometimes this state is just completely weird.)

 

I'm reasonably certain that there are states whose sales tax only applies

to cases where the seller has a permanent presence in-state.

 

The upshot of all this: Don't assume ANYTHING, and check the relevant laws

well in advance.

 

Great quote from the East-Atlantia Pointless War/Breeder's Cup flyer...

"Merchant rules: No biting, do your own tax thing."

 

Evan da Collaureo, who went three rounds with Richmond earlier this year.

Support the Great Atlantian Breeding Program (tm) - Drink Stierbach Water

dmontuor%telenet.UUCP at uunet.uu.net

 

 

Newsgroups: rec.org.sca

From: rzex60 at email.sps.mot.com (Jay Brandt)

Subject: Re: Merchanting in the SCA...

Organization: the Polyhedron Group

Date: Thu, 27 Oct 1994 19:08:55 GMT

 

In article <3619 at telenet.telenet.com>, dmontuor at telenet.com (Dave Montuori)

wrote:

 

> Jay Brandt <rzex60 at email.sps.mot.com> wrote:

> >Suze.Hammond at f56.n105.z1.fidonet.org (Suze Hammond) wrote:

> >> BTW, since we're on the subject, what about mail-order between sales tax

> >> states and non sales tax states. If I, in Oregon, sell shields by mail

> >> outside the state, do I have to charge the recipient's local tax and remit

> >> it?

> >

> >An unqualified YES.

>

> And now I must qualify it, since an unqualified yes is dead wrong. The

> examples given make it perfectly clear that Texas answers "Yes." But...

 

[Some excelent counter-examples cited here.]

 

> The upshot of all this: Don't assume ANYTHING, and check the relevant laws

> well in advance.

 

I stand corrected. I agree with you. Different jurisdictions have different

rules, and the merchant should check with mundane authorities to be safe.

 

Come to think of it, I recall Washington State businesses often advertized

'No tax for Oregon Buyers', which implies that the Texas rules -are-

different. And some mail order forms collect the vendor's state sales tax,

where others have you mark the appropriate rate (if any) for where you are

as the purchaser.

 

Goes to show you what can happen when a well-meaning person answers too

hastily.

 

Regards,

Jay Brandt

 

 

From: darrell.markewitz at ambassador.com (Darrell Markewitz)

Newsgroups: rec.org.sca

Subject: SCA & Festivals

Date: Fri, 28 Oct 1994 14:12:16 GMT

 

the WAREHAM FORGE

Hamlet of Wareham

RR #2, Proton Stn

Ont, CDN -  N0C 1L0

(519) 923- 9219

wareham.forge at ambassador.com

 

WJMICHALSIKI at DEPHICOM  wrote:

 

"The way I deal with Ren Faires is to remember that the actors and

vendors are professionals (ie getting paid, and doing this for more than

a single weekend).  I'd probably be ticked if someone was "cutting into"

my livelihood.

 

Another reason merchants might get irate, I feel, is the typical scadian

trait of explaining their hobby.  To a merchant, if customers are

standing around listening to you talk. they're not looking at his

wares.  Again, this is their livelihood."

 

If I might offer an alternative view - along with some ammunition to use

if you should be accused of causing these 'problems'.

 

(I make my living selling historic reproductions, both at re-creation

and crafts events. I was also on the production team for the

'Orangeville Medieval Festival" for 2 1/2 seasons.)

 

1) Professionals - Any one who is paid to provide a service at an event

should realize that they get paid whether they have a standing room crowd

before them or not. SCA (unpaid) performers should extend 'professional

courtisy' to other acts. In otherwords, avoid noise and position

conflicts etc. In both cases the MANAGEMENT is responcible for

schedualling and locations.

As was suggested in the original posting, the SCA should try to get a

liasion person into the planning sessions for the event - so any

conflicts are worked out in advance.

2) Vendors - In the retail world, everyone is trying for an edge. Too

many craftsmen that I see expect that their work should 'sell itself'

based on its quality. As someone once told me, "you gotta sell the

sizzle as much as the steak". Presentation of your product, and

explaining your product, are part of sucessful sales. I know that my

forge work sells as much because of the historical stories that I give

(constantly) as I sell it, as it does because of the quality of the

work. Commercial vendors that complain that someone else provides a

better 'show' than they do are basicly sucking on sour grapes.

 

From long personal experiance, I will state that "a Happy crowd is a

BUYING crowd". If any performer/vendor at your event complains  that

you are drawing his business or crowd away from her, tell them that!

People who are enjoying themselves often forget about the mortgage

payment and spend just a little bit more. People who get a lot of things

to see and do for an entry fee will appreciate the value, and spend just

a little bit more.

 

On the other side, the SCA must also act in a professional manner. That

means being polite AT ALL TIMES, reguardless of how dorky the public

gework with the public increases the reputation of the SCA and leads to

increased membership.

If handled with a professional attitude on both sides, the inclusion of

the SCA at an event will be a win/win situation.

 

Darrell/Sylard

 

 

From: curt.owings-christian at syncomm.com (CURT OWINGS-CHRISTIAN)

Newsgroups: rec.org.sca

Subject: RE: Period Veggies

Date: Fri, 18 Nov 94 23:52:00 -0400

Organization: Synergy Online, Parsippany, NJ (201) 331-1797

 

Ranvaig,

 

        The main problem with merchanting veggies at war is that the

rules for selling at Pennsic include the provision that anything sold by

the Coopers cannot be sold by the merchants.  They sell vegtiables.

That is why I do not carry citronella candles or emergency candles at

war.

                                        Ruedy

 

 

From: Kim Pollard <kim at inna.net>

Newsgroups: rec.org.sca

Subject: Re: Large events (200+ people) in Ansteorra

Date: Thu, 30 May 1996 07:21:07 -0400

Organization: Three Bubbas InnaNet.

 

On Thu, 30 May 1996, Terry L. Mixon wrote:

 

>   I have some friends that are blade merchants in the mundane world and

> are looking to take thier wares to events. What they do not want is to

> look at the calendar and not know if the event is large enough to make it

> worth going to. If any of you good folk could pass on which big events

> are coming up still this year, where they are, and about how many people

> have historicly attended, they will be deeply in your debt.

>

> Thanks in advance,

> Uillec MacAoidh

> Shire of Emerald Keep

 

Just some friendly advise from one new SCA merchant to another...

 

Most events will only charge you a small ($10 or less) fee for showing up

and spending a day with them.  Many smaller events do not even do that.  

All you must do is show up and set out your wares.  This may be tedious

if you have a large set-up, but the connections, word-of-mouth

reputation and free advertising are priceless!  Tell your friends to show

up at ANY nearby event, no matter how small... in thelong run, if they

have given the populous a good impression, the word will get out about

their wares and the return will be worth it!

 

Kimberly

Tyger Cub Enterprises

 

 

From: cav at bnr.ca (Rick Cavasin)

Newsgroups: rec.org.sca

Subject: Re: Period wares (was jurying merchants)

Date: 2 Jul 1996 18:44:30 GMT

Organization: Bell-Northern Research Ltd.

 

In article <Pine.BSF.3.91.960702064843.2994B-100000 at spyder.inna.net>, Kim Pollard <kim at inna.net> writes:

 

|> Part of the problem here is the "supply & demand" principle of creating

|> "period" merchandise that is not only documentable, but affordable.  The time

|> it takes to make a "period" item is much too long for the average merchant.

|> For example...

 

This is all true, but I think we should try to think about *why* it's true.

With other reenactment groups, people seem to be willing to pay large sums of

money for authentic kit.

 

SCA folks seem to be quite willing to part with large sums of money for certain

items ( armour, weapons, jewellry/corronets).

 

My wares are about as documentably period as most anything you'll see in an

SCA A&S competition.  Any customer who wants documentation need only ask (I

wrote some up for someone who bought an alum tawed goatskin dyed with madder

and brasilwood - he was making a pair of poulaines for an A&S entry).  My

wares are also expensive, and I probably wouldn't ever bother to set up a

booth at an SCA event.  The sales could never justify the time/travel expense.

 

|> "Period" goods were hand crafted by skilled (usually) artisans who spent

|> their entire day working at their craft. "Modern" (not necessarily Mundane)

|> merchants spend whatever's left of their day AFTER their mundane workday is

|> over gathering items that their customer's hopefully want and can AFFORD.  If

|> something does not sell, it is discontinued or sold to an audience that does

|> want it.

 

You should be aiming to make a decent hourly wage whether you're working at a

craft full time, or after your mundane workday.  The temptation is to let the

day job subsidize your craftwork.  

|> I am an artist as well as a merchant and would LOVE nothing more than to

|> provide more "documentable" items to my customers.  It not only makes me feel

|> great to create an item from scratch the way our ancestors did, but it also

|> would make my merchanting booth more attractive. However, after trying to do

|> just that*, I have concluded it just is not feasible.  

 

Sad, but probably true.  There are certain things we can somehow justify

spending gobs of money on, but others we don't.  I think the 'do it yourself'

culture of the SCA is partly to blame for this.  Not that we should be

discouraging people from doing things for themselves, but it does make it

difficult for some craftspeople to get a decent return for their work.

 

Cheers, Rick/Balderik

 

 

From: Kim Pollard <kim at inna.net>

Newsgroups: rec.org.sca

Subject: Re: Period wares (was jurying merchants)

Date: Tue, 2 Jul 1996 07:21:22 -0400

 

On 2 Jul 1996, C. Clark wrote:

 

> What I'd like to see is a few more merchants with documentation. Why is

> it that we can go to A&S competitions and see documentation for things

> that we're never going to have unless we spend dozens of hours learning

> to make them and another dozen hours making them, but when we actually

> see things that we can buy for our own use we're usually offered no

> documentation whatsoever? As long as we take it for granted that only

> experts (or walking libraries) are able to identify and buy period goods,

> we should also take it for granted that such goods will rarely be

> available--even if they could be sold at affordable prices.

>

> Henry of Maldon/Alex Clark

 

Part of the problem here is the "supply & demand" principle of creating

"period" merchandise that is not only documentable, but affordable.  The time

it takes to make a "period" item is much too long for the average merchant.

For example...

 

If you wish to have a "period" leather flask, then you will have to pay

for a) that merchant's research time - b) the cost of materials, which

are NOT inexpensive - c) the merchant's time actually creating the wares

(an average of 1 to 2 days PER ITEM, and THEN - d) a reasonable markup.

 

Now, if you consider there is a merchantable event nearly every weekend

within a 6 hour drive (my personal time limit), that leaves only 3 to 4 days

to create the merchandise.  At that rate, a merchant would have only one or

two things to sell per event OF ONLY ONE OR TWO ITEMS. Maybe more if no one

buys anything at an event (bummer - no gas/food money to get back home),

maybe less if everything sells (bummer - the merchant has to spend another

week creating an item that does not allow any other item to be created.

 

"Period" goods were hand crafted by skilled (usually) artisans who spent

their entire day working at their craft. "Modern" (not necessarily Mundane)

merchants spend whatever's left of their day AFTER their mundane workday is

over gathering items that their customer's hopefully want and can AFFORD.  If

something does not sell, it is discontinued or sold to an audience that does

want it.

 

I am an artist as well as a merchant and would LOVE nothing more than to

provide more "documentable" items to my customers.  It not only makes me feel

great to create an item from scratch the way our ancestors did, but it also

would make my merchanting booth more attractive.  However, after trying to do

just that*, I have concluded it just is not feasible.  Not only are the items

too expensive for the average person, but the time it takes to actually

create the item leaves me with no life.  I will happily create a "period"

item for a friend or as a gift for my liege lord, but I simply have no time

to mass produce the items for sale at market where only those with serious

money can afford them - and these folks are too far and few between.

 

Hope this helps you understand the "modern" merchant's predicament.

 

Yours In Service,

Kimberly

Tyger Cub Enterprises - http://www.inna.net/tyger-cub

 

* The item I was making were hand sewn pouches.  These take at least a day to

do which would mean, if I didn't want to do anything else by hand, I had an

average of 2 o 3 items per event to show.  Any merchant can tell you, if you

don't have a large selection, people tend to pass you by -- and I was being

passed over too frequently to make this type of item worth my time.  I

still carry the odd hand sewn pouch or two, but now I also carry a

variety of mass produced, easily affordable items that DO sell.

 

Believe me... if there wasn't a market, it wouldn't be sold.

 

 

Subject: Re: ANST - Merchants (was Belts and their meaning)

Date: Thu, 09 Apr 98 16:37:30 MST

From: knotwork at juno.com

To: ansteorra at Ansteorra.ORG

 

On Thu, 09 Apr 1998 00:25:17 EDT maynedelacroix at juno.com (SCOTT A WAGGONER) writes:

>On Mon, 6 Apr 1998, Dennis Grace <amazing at mail.utexas.edu> wrote:

>

>>Shouldn't most of us be doing that for some of the virtues

>>of the Chivalry?  After all, many of the chivalric virtues

>>are virtues for others.  E.g., no prowess and courage would

>>be expected of a mere merchant, but largess, courtoisie, and

>>pity for women, priests, and the weak in general are

>>commendable for him.

>

>Hate to break in on this but I just have to ask... Where are you

>finding your merchants??

>

>Let me dissect your comment...

>

>no prowess or courage :  You have never paid three dollars for a

>hotdog at the movies?

>        You have to be pretty brave to charge that!!

>

>largess: Oh there's a concept!  A merchant giving stuff away for the

>asking!

>

><g>

>

>Mayne de la Croix --- The original MiB

>Gate's Edge Canton, Barony of  Stargate,  Ansteorra

 

Mayne,

 

I have to step in here in defense of merchants.  I have been a merchant

almost since I joined the SCA about 17 years ago. Starting out, I just

threw a blanket on the ground and sold jewelry I had found at garage

sales.  Now, I have a tent that cost over $1000, and sell mostly new

merchandise from several sources I have found over the years.  While I

generally come close to breaking even, I don't make much _profit_ to

speak of.

 

I chose to become a merchant because I kept seeing things I thought

people in the SCA would like the opportunity to own in order to add to

their enjoyment in playing this game.  (I have a background in marketing

and a good job, so money is not really a consideration. Including cost

of goods to sell, travel expenses and the occasional merchanting fee,

this part of my hobby can be quite costly!)   Also, being fairly

sedentary, it is a great way to meet people, because almost everyone

comes by the Stone Rainbow booth eventually, and I don't have to run all

over the place.  Although I don;t mind separating the occasional mundane

from his money at Renfairs <grin>, I don't overcharge, I bargain, and I

offer discounts to SCA folks.  I sell mostly books, jewelry, gemstones,

gift items, and toys and candy for the kids.

 

Prowess and courage?  Haggling in the marketplace is a delicate dance of

"thrust and parry," and is fun besides. Largesse?  Besides being

available as a place for others to get largesse to hand out, I am

fortunate to be able to be generous when I want to.  (It's my stuff to

give away, and I often do!)  Courtly behavior?  I assure you that I do my

best to uphold the ideals of the Society.  I have spent many hours at

troll booths and A&S displays and in the kitchen. Seldom do I set up to

sell at local events so I can be available to help.  (Some people in my

own shire don't even know I am a merchant.)  Service is very important to

me, and being a merchant is a service, too!  Pity for the weak?  One

reason I started handling toys and candy is to have something to give the

children to make their events memorable.  (Yes, I said _give_.  Although

I'd rather the parents bought the kids something, there is the occasional

child that captures my heart, and if a lollipop will make his day, it

makes mine, too.) I also sell some items made by others who prefer not to

be stuck at a booth all day, and my commission is very minimal.

 

I don't know where _you_ find _your_ merchants, but the ones I know are,

on the whole, fine and decent folks who go to a lot of trouble packing

and wagging around their wares so _you_ can get some "neat stuff" to help

make your Dream come true.

 

Another "mere merchant,"

 

Joanna

 

 

Subject: Re: ANST - Merchants (was Belts and their meaning)

Date: Thu, 09 Apr 98 17:33:13 MST

From: "Lady Rosina" <gwendylon at hotmail.com>

To: ansteorra at Ansteorra.ORG

 

I too am coming to the defense of merchants.  You cannot clump us all in

one category cause we all have different reason for becoming a merchant.

 

I became a merchant cause I felt it was time to do something different

in the SCA.. I hae been in the SCA for 5 yrs helping with events and

going to events and it was time for a change.

 

I meet lots of new people that I wouldn't ordinarily even talk to.  I

bring to the SCA populous items that they need at a reasonable cost and

I have even given stuf away and it surprised the people cause it came

from a merchant.

 

Again I ask of you, Please don't judge all merchants by a select few.

 

Rosina

 

 

Subject: RE: ANST - Merchants (was Belts and their meaning)

Date: Fri, 10 Apr 98 07:23:48 MST

From: John Ruble <jruble at urocor.com>

To: "'ansteorra at Ansteorra.ORG'" <ansteorra at Ansteorra.ORG>

 

> Another "mere merchant," Joanna, said:

...

> fortunate to be able to be generous when I want to. (It's my stuff to

> give away, and I often do!)

...

> reason I started handling toys and candy is to have something to give the

> children to make their events memorable.  (Yes, I said _give_.  Although

...etc.

 

Well, I have to concur.  When my children were younger and more adorable, I

would frequently find some merchant giving them some small trinket that just

made their day.  They still have most of those trinkets too.  My lady wife

hasn't lost that adorable quality, and I occasionally find some merchant

giving *her* some small trinket, which makes her day and apparently makes

the merchant's day too.  (She still has most of them...)

 

I've never had a bad thing to say about merchants as a whole.  Merchanting

is an honorable and respectable profession, and I've often used it for a

disgu... em, I've often pursued it when traveling to the Frankish lands.

 

While within our medieval framework it is difficult to give them the credit

they are due for adding *so much* to our Game for so little gain,  I would

like to offer all those merchants out there reading this a very hearty

VIVAT! and my thanks.

 

-Ulf

 

 

Date: Mon, 22 Feb 1999 00:37:04 -0600

From: Roberta R Comstock <froggestow at juno.com>

To: sca-arts at raven.cc.ukans.edu

Subject: Re: Arts/Crafts/Money

 

A while back there was a pricing discussion on another list (Weavers

Words - basketry list)

in which one of the well-known published instructors was asked about how

she prices a basket.

 

She gave a price for a specific basket of, say $25.  When the potential

buyer asked her how much it would cost for a dozen of them, all alike,

the weaver said the cost would be $45 each, and probably higher yet for

larger quantities.  The shopper was aghast, having hoped for a bulk rate

deal.  But the weaver said the cost increase was based on how boring it

is to do the same thing over and over and how much she would hate to

spend the time doing so.

 

It seemed perfectly reasonable to me!  Another reason I'm not a merchant.

 

Hertha

 

 

Date: Wed, 24 Feb 1999 07:10:29 -0600

From: "Rikki Mitman" <esmitman at ghg.net>

To: <sca-arts at raven.cc.ukans.edu>

Subject: Re: Arts/Crafts/Money

 

Having been a merchant as my sole source of income for a couple of tough

years, I have strong feelings about charging an additional fee for merchants

(except at wars, which can count on huge turnouts).

 

Merchants can contribute a great deal to the atmosphere of an event. They

bring things we can't find at the local Wal Mart. And they generally aren't

making a killing on it. They have no guarantee of turnout. It could rain.

They take a lot of risk. There were times that I went home without making

back my expenses.

 

Still, merchants are usually very glad to donate a prize or raffle item. I

would encourage event organizers to consider doing without an additional

merchants fee.

 

Mistress Teleri ferch Pawl

Ansteorra

 

 

From: theducks at greenduck.com (Steve Urbach)

Newsgroups: rec.org.sca

Subject: Re: Merchanting in the SCA

Date: Fri, 23 Apr 1999 00:11:23 GMT

 

On Thu, 22 Apr 1999 21:24:39 GMT, Elizabeth <ksilverhorn at home.com>

wrote:

>I am new to the SCA, and am a merchant. My question is this:

>

>Are there any guidelines/ rules for merchants in the SCA? Are these

>guides standard or dso they vary from event to event or barony to

>barony? I do not want to go to my first event as a merchant and do

>something horribly wrong.

>

>Roisin Dubh

>Silverhorn Designs

 

Rule 1: Check with the site Merchacrat well in advance for event

specific rules.

Rule 2:      Comply with local laws (sales tax, food permits), but play it

low key. Again ask the event Merchocrat FIRST before alerting local

authorities <G>. No ilegal substances...

Rule 3: Target SCA specific interests with you product(s). Discretely

display Mundane "support" products like Propane, batteries...

Rule4: Hide mundane Chrome tables and chairs with a cloth (can you say

old sheet?)

Rule 5: Have FUN

 

Derek Dragonsclaw

Green Duck Designs (and books)

        _

       | \                           Steve Urbach

       |  )erek

   ____|_/ragonsclaw                 theducks at greenduck.com

  / / /                              http://www.greenduck.com

 

 

From: lindahl at pbm.com (Greg Lindahl)

Newsgroups: rec.org.sca

Subject: Juried Merchants List

Date: 15 Oct 1999 14:08:22 GMT

 

Hello! I would like to remind everyone about a free resource, the

Juried Merchants List. It is a resource for vendors who sell authentic

stuff, and people who want to buy authentic stuff.  Merchants on this

list have at least made an effort to identify what time and place

their goods come from. I hope that you will find it useful.

 

http://www.pbm.com/~lindahl/merchants/

 

As I mentioned above, this is a free service for both buyers and

sellers, and carries no paid advertisement. The list generated 5,960

visits to merchant sites in September 1999. There are currently 61

merchants on the list.

 

-- Gregory Blount

 

 

From: Rayne/Richard <PRIDEelectric at centurytel.net>

Newsgroups: rec.org.sca

Subject: Re: To all merchants

Date: Fri, 26 May 2000 12:47:51 -0500

 

bert at suite224.net wrote:

> I , as an SCA merchant who has been burned by a deadbeat, (that is to

> say one who has taken what turned out to be an unredeemable rubber

> check) would like to start a website to keep all other SCA merchants

> informed of those who should be avoided with regard to this form of

> payment.

> If you are interested in this concept, please contact me at:

> bert at suite224.net

> I am looking into getting a site together where you can check before a

> given show to see who in your area may be a problem.

 

Definitely need to check your own state laws. I have been a SCA merchant

for years and have worked in numerous retail establishments over the past

25 plus years.

 

Something that has worked for me is to follow these steps:

 

(1) You get the check, put it into your bank and you cash it and it comes

back NSF.

 

(2) You write to the individual, a nice letter, sending them a copy of the

checking showing the NSF stamp. You tell them that you will re-deposit

check on a date 3 weeks into the future.  This gives them two weeks AFTER

they receive the letter to make sure that they have the funds in their

account.  You let them know that they can send you a postal money order

prior to the deposit date if they do not want it re-deposited.  You make

three copies of this letter.  One you keep for your records. One you send

certified, the other via regular mail.  (why?  because some people just do

not sign for and pick up registered mail)

 

(3)  If they do not contact you - you re-deposit the check.  If it doesn't

clear a second time (NSF).  Most banks will not allow you to submit a

third time.   (and in many states NSF two times is a major offense)

 

(4)  Now you need to get tougher.  If your bank has charged you any fees,

you will need to collect them.  Figure up the total cost they now owe

you.  Bank fees, handling fees, postage fees, etc.  And send them a letter

stating that you will notify the local authorities in an attempt to

collect this debt and post their NSF check publicly at all events that you

merchant at.  (this is legal in the states I have worked in - commercial

businesses put the names on a sign outside their business, stick it beside

the cash register, put notices in the newspaper, etc. - Check the laws in

their state and yours) I also state that if I do not hear from them I will

begin contacting their local group in an attempt to contact them.   (now

you need to be aware of Federal laws on contacting people in an attempt to

collect a debt from a third party)

 

(5)  Now if the check comes back after the initial deposit "Account

Closed" follow the same steps, just say the check was "account closed" and

give them the chance to pay by money order and follow the other steps.

Also in most states - writing a check on a closed account is a major

offense.

 

As to your website.  I don't know how well this would work.  If you did

the research and found out the laws for the posting of personal

information. If you made sure that if I, as merchant, wasn't sending you

my ex-lover's name just because I was a "itch" .

 

And I guess that you could call your website listing a "general name"

like:  "Listing of person(s) who required additional contact to collect

payment for SCA merchandise."  It doesn't say they were "dead-beats" or

never paid, had a bad check or pointed any "major" fingers - such wording

might (or might not) cover you.

 

Just a few ideas...   BTW  I never have had a bad SCA check.  I require

the "normal" mundane ID, plus a current SCA Blue Card.  I write the local

group name on the check also.

 

Rayne

(formerly of Blackwater Wares)

 

 

Date: Mon, 25 Sep 2000 06:16:19 -0500

From: Diana L Skaggs <upsxdls_osu at ionet.net>

Subject: SC - OP - Bartering formula

 

>While splitting the bill for cheese sticks and pitchers I wondered how do

>you listees come to a fair trade when offering goods and services to fellow

>scadians.  Nyckademus

 

I consider each trade/barter carefully.  First, I have to make sure I

actually have time & funds on my side of the deal. Second, who am I

bartering with?  Are they reliable?  (I fulfulled my side of the bargain,

am I sure they will fill theirs and what am I willing to do if they don't?)

Is the person a friend? an acquaintance? an adult or child?  What do I want

in return?

 

Rule of thumb:  I find out what everyone else is charging for the service.

If I'm doing it for a friend, I charge less.  For example: when deciding

on the cost of garb. I charge $10 per hour for my time (local seamstress'

rate).  If it's easy, say a tunic, no trim, machine hemmed the cost is

rarely over $10 plus materials.  If trim is involved, or if they want

everything sewn by hand, I charge extra. If I supply the materials, I use

the cost plus a fee for my time and travel. If I buy $1 per yard fabric at

the local Walmart, the time & travel fee are small. If I have to go to OKC

or Tulsa for supplies, I have to charge more, because it's a special trip.

If a large initial outlay is involved say velvet & satin for court garb, I

ask for material dollars up front.  Working with satin & velvet is much

more difficult for me than cotton, it takes longer, so I have to estimate

costs higher.  

 

Exception:  are they offering something besides cash? Say, housework or

yardwork?  If I had to pay someone for housework, it would cost me between

$7.50 & $10 per hour.  I've been known to sew for someone while they clean.

I get a clean house and they get new garb.  

 

I charge $20.00 per hour for violin lessons.  Usually children can only

take a half-hour at a time, so I charge $40 per month.  No refunds for

missed lessons (without a REALLY good reason).  I have to build my schedule

around teaching, and have to be available whether a student shows or not. I

used to give lessons for free, just because I like to teach and see new

players started out right, even if lesson money is scarce. But, free

lessons didn't seem to be taken as seriously as paid lessons.  So, I had to

make the change.  

 

Oops, sorry to get to rambling. I guess my bottom line is I charge on an

individual basis and have several considerations.

 

Leanna

 

 

Date: Fri, 18 Jul 2003 11:30:33 -0700

From: david friedman <ddfr at daviddfriedman.com>

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] question: Medieval restaurant at Pennsic

To: Cooks within the SCA <sca-cooks at ansteorra.org>

 

>>>

I just finished lunching with a friend who does catering for a living.  I, of course, was enthusiastically telling him about my upcoming "vacation" and

he was interested in the food vending.  I told him that it was pretty much

covered, except that most of the "in period" food was done at the individual

campsites.  He is very interested in learning if it would be feasible to do a

totally medieval food vending at Pennsic. (not this year!).  So...I know we've

talked about this, but I don't know what the consensus was.

<<<

 

So far as I can remember, the only example in the past was run by

Carolingians, including Marion of Edwinstowe, for a few years many

years ago. They not only served period food, they built clay ovens on

site for baking, cooked over the fire--the only out of period

equipment, as I recall, was refrigerators. It was an impressive

effort, but I would expect it would be a good deal easier to do

period food using modern equipment.

 

> Would people buy period food?

 

I would. I suspect a significant minority would. But to make it a

commercial success, it would have to be good enough so that a

significant number of people were buying it, not because it was

period but because it was good. Indeed, it might make sense not to

make a point of advertising that it was period, just to give the

restaurant some appropriate sounding name, have only period things on

the menu, and let people figure out for themselves--or not--that it

was from period recipes.

 

>>>

Would he do better with a push-cart, vending

around the A&S tents and the battlefields?

<<<

 

Interesting idea. I don't remember anyone doing it, and don't know if

there are rules that would prevent it. He could make things such as

barmakiya that are good period finger food.

 

>>>

  Is it even possible for a newcomer to get a food vending license?  I don't do any merchanting (I only buy), so I'm totally clueless.

   What about this idea: (OOP)..a pushcart selling frozen snack items (sort

of a medieval "ice-cream truck")?

<<<<

 

That I probably wouldn't buy from, since the feel would be less

period than what's there now, not more.

--

David/Cariadoc

 

 

Date: Mon, 21 Jul 2003 10:10:38 -0400

From: "Sudden Service #5" <sudnserv5 at netway.com>

Subject: [Sca-cooks] Re: question: Medieval restaurant at Pennsic

To: <sca-cooks at ansteorra.org>

 

    As someone who has made a short lived attempt at a restaurant at Pennsic

XXII, I can make some suggestions:

1)  Arrange for lots of help before arrival, at least 2 or 3 times as many

people as you think you need-  you will have lots of people flake out on you

after they realize that they are not having as much fun as they could be at

Pennsic because they are working-HARD, Hot, Sweaty work, too.  In fact if

you could hire non SCAdians it would be best.  I have noticed that the other

SCAdians who were running places have all disappeared in the gap of time

since I ran the New Cheshire Inn/Olaf's Plunder & my return to Pennsic 8

years latter.  I would not have done the Inn the next year even if I had

been there as a merchant because of the lack of reliable competent helpers

(I did not attend because of personnel problems)

2)  At the time I was not required by the Coopers to get a food handling

license, that may have changed, it was felt that since I was serving to a

closed group, not the general public, it was not required of me.  If you are

not doing catering outside of the SCA you most likely will find the

requirements for a Catering License (insurance, equipment, on site

refrigeration, inspections & such) staggering.  You do have to get a Sales

Tax License & pay the sales tax like any other Pennsic merchant.

3)  Most people will eat any well prepared food that looks & smells

appetizing.  If you are making dishes that are good tasting they will come

back & bring friends, Period food will bring in many SCAdians IF it meets

the previous criteria. Some of my dishes were period, most were periodal,

but then I was much less educated on the subject back then.  I did cook over

charcoal braziers though.

Pax,

Olaf of Trollhiemsfjord

who misses Battlefield Bakery as well

 

 

Date: Tue, 22 Jul 2003 10:00:26 +1000

From: "Glenda Robinson" <glendar at compassnet.com.au>

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] question: Medieval restaurant at Pennsic

To: "Cooks within the SCA" <sca-cooks at ansteorra.org>

 

I've always had great success with biscuits from a basket too. So many

in-period (or nearly) that are just wonderful, with the additional bonus of being able to make them ahead of time.

 

Glenda.

 

----- Original Message -----

There are certainly items that could be sold from a mobile market. Pasties,

Tart for an Ember Day, roasted meats, sausages, breads, cheeses...heck I

could go on and on!  So could any one of us.

------

 

Date: Tue, 22 Jul 2003 13:25:54 -0400

From: "Rosine" <nothingbutadame at inthe.sca.org>

Subject: Re: [Sca-cooks] question: Medieval restaurant at Pennsic

To: "Cooks within the SCA" <sca-cooks at ansteorra.org>

 

Meat Pies. In my son's age group (high school and early college) they'll

take either pizza or those frozen meat-in-pastry things over just about

anything else... and I'd go for a hand-held meal as well - meat, veggie,

sweet. I think such a stand would have lines to rival any of the food

court's present servers.

   And it'd be faboo to be able to stroll through the marketplace eating

without carting around a paper plate. (ugh!)

 

Rosine

 

 

From: clevin at ripco.com (Craig Levin)

Newsgroups: rec.org.sca

Subject: Re: how to persue merchants?

Date: Fri, 20 Feb 2004 02:01:19 +0000 (UTC)

 

The Bratt  <brattboy at aros.net> wrote:

>I have been wondering how one can go about asking cettain merchants to

>visit events and wars for items in specific that you know the merchant

>would be well recieved?  I'm not sure if I'm asking this correctly, but

>I would really like opinions.

 

Speaking as the protege of a merchant, I've got to say that the

easiest way to get a merchant to stock something is to ask. We're

in this to make money, after all, & the best way to do that is to

meet the needs & wants of the consumers. Similarly, if you want a

speecific merchant to go to your event, ask. You have to go to

where the consumers are to sell your goods.

 

For repeat performances, consider where you put the merchant(s)

in relation to the rest of the event. If you put the merchant(s)

in a pavilion or a field far from the list field, the mess hall,

etc., little business will take place, & the merchant(s) won't be

too enthusiastic about coming back. Also, consider the nature of

the event. Outdoor events aren't necessarily going to attract a

bookseller, whose wares fare ill when exposed to humidity, wind,

& temperature changes, but someone who sells things like feast

gear won't be as troubled.

 

Pedro

--

http://pages.ripco.net/~clevin/index.html

clevin at ripco.com

Craig Levin                     Librarians Rule: Oook!

 

 

Date: Thu, 19 Feb 2004 20:02:59 -0500

From: Cynthia Virtue <cvirtue at thibault.org>

Newsgroups: rec.org.sca

Subject: Re: how to persue merchants?

 

Are you asking, as a private person, how to entice merchants to come to

your area?  Or are you as an event organizer, trying to get merchants in

your area?  Or do you want merchants to come and bring X merchandise and

not Y merchandise?

 

The first step would be to write the merchant a fan letter, saying that

you love their wares and it would be great if they'd come.  Steps 2

through N depend on answers above for tactics.

 

I buy much of my SCA stuff via merchants' web pages, these days.  But

I've got all my basic gear, so what I get tends to be higher-ticket,

specific-use stuffy authenticisist things.  It's less economical for

such a merchant to cart around, than to bring more middle-range, popular

stuff to a war.

 

cv

 

 

From: Claude Anthony Penny <cpenny at swbell.net>

Date: September 19, 2006 2:04:37 PM CDT

To: "Kingdom of Ansteorra - SCA, Inc." <ansteorra at lists.ansteorra.org>

Subject: Re: [Ansteorra] period on a budget

 

On offering labor, many of the smaller merchants, travel without help.

Most would be willing to trade stock for work.  Ask, but be nice, don't

act like you think their work is overpriced or poor quality. Admire

their items (even if they are doing resale) and offer your labor in

trade.  Some may not need any help, but someone will.  I tend to be more

willing to trade when I've had a good show (for labor or other), and for

an item I might want, when I've had a horrible show. Don't forget

offering things like running errands, booth, pet or kid sitting, and

even Massages.  Learn some massage, get good at it, (not always sexy),

you'll have something you can trade, both in and out of the SCA.  Some

of these hints might well work at mundane art shows as well.

 

I have an upcoming show where I will need to have the booth open for 12

hours straight (not counting getting it open and closed). I will have a

little help in the morning, but none after around noon. Any offer of

help would be well received, and I know that a lot of other vendors end

up with the same dilemma

 

Cairenn

 

 

From: David Backlin <edrei at smythkepe.org>

Date: October 6, 2006 7:50:12 PM CDT

To: "Kingdom of Ansteorra - SCA, Inc." <ansteorra at lists.ansteorra.org>

Subject: Re: [Ansteorra] Merchanting Info.

 

----- Original Message -----

From: "Michael Silverhands" <silverhands at sbcglobal.net>

> They required that all merchants have a valid Oklahoma state Tax ID

> (if I recall correctly) for purposes of collecting sales tax --

> effectively eliminating "casual/amateur" merchanting. But

> "professional" merchants should be in the clear, since of course they

> already have a valid Tax ID for every state they operate in, are

> collecting sales tax on everything they sell, and are reporting it to

> the appropriate state authorities.

 

Does Oklahoma still require a $500 bond for out of state merchants? I  

cannot afford such a thing, so have no Oklahoma ID and thus do not  

merchant in Oklahoma.

 

Most states, to my knowledge, do not require a deposit/bond as long  

as you report on time.

 

Some events will charge a merchant fee &/or require a donation to the  

prize chest. It depends on the group and depends on the event. Each  

event & each event site may have its own quirks regarding merchants  

so it's always best to check ahead of time to see what the rules are.  

For example: in one state, the state parks specify where vendors can  

set-up and often frown upon vendors who wish to camp in their booth,  

while I've known some groups to frown upon merchants altogether.

 

There are several SCA merchant discussion lists where you can get  

more information. Two of the main ones are: sca-

merchants at yahoogroups.com  and  sca_merchants at yahoogroups.com

 

Ld Edrei the Quiet

(mka David Backlin)

Merchant and Adventurer

Shire of Smythkepe

 

 

From: Sarah & Richard Yeager <young.yeager at gmail.com>

Date: October 6, 2006 9:15:59 PM CDT

To: "Kingdom of Ansteorra - SCA, Inc." <ansteorra at lists.ansteorra.org>

Subject: Re: [Ansteorra] Merchanting Info.

 

Yes Oklahoma does, $500 dollar cash bond and most of the insurance companys

won't write a $500 security bond.

 

I tried to do Acadamy of the Bow when I found this out I went home. I called

Oklahoma City the week before and even though I told the woman I was from

Texas, she had failed to supply the information, I got to Ardmore, Ok

before I found out the above.

 

Most other states do like Texas, you pay your $20, get your certificate and

collect you taxes.

 

Mirabilla la Archiere

 

On 10/6/06, David Backlin <edrei at smythkepe.org> wrote:

> Does Oklahoma still require a $500 bond for out of state merchants? I

> cannot afford such a thing, so have no Oklahoma ID and thus do not  

> merchant in Oklahoma.

 

 

From: Elric Dracwin <dracwin at cox.net>

Date: October 7, 2006 8:13:35 AM CDT

To: "Kingdom of Ansteorra - SCA, Inc." <ansteorra at lists.ansteorra.org>

Subject: Re: [Ansteorra] Merchanting Info.

 

The state of Oklahoma requires Special Event Coordinators to get a $50

permit to allow merchants to sell their wares. The Special Event Coordinator

must daily collect the taxes from any merchants that do not have a valid

Oklahoma Tax ID and remit it to the state. The group running the event then

becomes liable for those taxes.

 

In conjunction with this law the state of Oklahoma also decided that they

would increase the bond requirement and not issue Oklahoma Tax ID's to any

casual merchant. I think they were going for a decrease in paperwork and

labor by shunting that to the Special Event Coordinators. There are

exceptions in the permit requirement for some non-profit groups (e.g.

schools and churches) but the SCA is not covered by any of the exception

categories.

 

When the law was passed (4 years ago?) Ansteorra declared there would be no

merchanting allowed in Oklahoma and we went for 1 year without any. Over the

subsequent years we worked with the kingdom officers and the Oklahoma Tax

Commission through several permutations of handling procedures. The current

version of the compromise is: We do not have to get the $50 permits and only

allow merchants with valid Oklahoma Tax ID's. That eliminates the SCA's

liability for sales taxes.

 

There is a special provision in the law where we could submit a request to

not be liable for the taxes and pay the $50 (per site used). That would

allow us to have merchants without an Oklahoma Tax ID. This was brought to

my attention this year and may be considered for next year.

 

Elric Dracwin

Baron Wiesenfeuer

Northern Region Merchant Coordinator

 

<the end>



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