Welcome to Big Box SCA!
In this blog, we'll try to show you projects you can use for the Society for Creative Anachronism; projects that you can do with materials found at big box stores. Our mission is to help people do good, reasonably authentic stuff with tools and materials that are easy to find.
We live in the Middle Kingdom, and collectively have 34 years of SCA experience (it doesn't seem that long!) Athelyna Doucet (formerly Lauretta de Stellafenduta) is a 14th-century Englishwoman who joined the Society to fight, but somehow spends all of her time making things, mostly textile things. Kiriak Kosmatu is a late 10th/early 11th-century Rus who fights with a large household and spends most of his free time making things, especially textile tools for Athelyna. In the everyday world, Aaron is a professor of mathematics at a small liberal arts university, and Laura teaches history at an even smaller local college. We spend most of our free time making things, both for the SCA and for our 90-year-old house.
If you're reading this, we'll assume that you're in the SCA, or that you like to do historically-inspired handcrafts. We'll also assume that you have a finite amount of time, money, space, and access to resources for SCA activities. We're looking back to the days when we were Broke College Students (or Broke Graduate Students) with small apartments, no cars, and a lot of work to do.
About the Blog
Our philosophy is that SCA activities should be fun and accessible to everyone, and that it's good for the Society if people keep trying to do better and more authentic stuff. Our experience has been that setting up to do a project is often harder than doing the project. We're assuming that finding and paying for materials is the biggest challenge for SCA arts and sciences - that limitations of space and work time can be overcome if you're creative, especially if you're willing to turn your living room into a wood shop like Kiriak did the last time he lived in a small apartment.
So, we're turning to the big box stores. Our ideal project will be one that you can do using authentic methods and materials, entirely with things you buy at your nearest big box superstore, like Meijer or Wal-Mart. Yes, we know there are plenty of good reasons to think the big box stores are evil, but when you don't have a car and live in a small town and can't hold out for sales it's nice to be able to buy your groceries and your fabric and a plunger all in one place. If we can't create a superstore project, we'll try to use materials that come from the large chain hobby and hardware stores, like Home Depot or Michael's. Sometimes we'll have to send you to a smaller shop or a mail order source, but we'll try to give you lots of options there. And, of course, it's good to support your mom-and-pop stores and your SCA merchants when you can. But when you can't, there's Big Box SCA.