I had the opportunity to reconnect with many good friends this weekend, at the first weekend of workshops for the Southern California Renaissance Faire. I work there each year, with the Guild of St. Helena’s. If you have dreamed of working as a faire participant, there is still time to register and take your workshops (apprentices need 12) and join the cast of the original and best Renaissance faire.
Right now, the park is filled with pallets and wood, the sounds of electric drills and hammers are ringing through the trees and across the lake. People are painting and building, taking classes, and reconnecting after a long fall and winter apart.
There is something special about this part of Faire, where we all come together and collectively build up the site and reaffirm our connections to one another. We build our cott, we get our costumes approved, we work hard together because we’re a family. Most of us don’t get paid. We buy or craft all of our costumes and our gear, we do the work, we show up rain or shine, all for the love of the Faire.
Over the next few weekends, the bones of the faire will slowly go up, winding pathways will become delineated, bright banners hung. We will transform an empty park into Elizabethan England and for a few short weeks, it will be real.
On opening day, the park will be alive with bells and voices, songs and laughter. Elizabeth I will walk the market paths, with Her scarlet clad Yeomen and all Her Court. The common folk will frolic and revel, dancers will entertain in the Trader’s Market and there will be beautiful artisan crafts to buy and admire. It is truly magical and for 7 weeks we keep the magic alive for the sheer love of it.
I hope you join us at Faire this year!
Speaking of friends. I would really like to thank my friend Marilyn who is the owner and creative genius behind Marmalady’s. She hosted a giveaway on her blog and very generously gave away a membership in my earring of the month club! I’m so excited to have one of her readers as a club member.
I have to tell you, I might really love her chai apple butter. Like, a lot. And her Tuscan Daisy tea cosy is my favorite when I use my bright green teapot. It spends many hours at the Honey & Ollie workbench, keeping my favorite tea blends warm while I work. Because good tea is the lifeblood of an artisan…