Monday, November 25, 2013

Black Friday 2013-Bigger, Better, and Most Likely More Aggressive!!!

I'll try to make this simple. We ARE doing this notorious, nefarious sale again this year, despite many setbacks, new babies, and treachery. I know there has been a lot of buzz about it, and rightfully so.   I will start by explaining how it works, for those of you who don't know, and then I'll get to the "fine print" details. If you don't read the important stuff, it's your own dang fault.





*In our Black Friday SALE, there are 4 "levels" of "grab bags" that you can purchase. They are grab bags, because the customer doesn't know what is in them. We will tell you the size (because getting the right size on a corset is CRUCIAL) but we will not tell you what colors or styles you'll be getting, because, GUESS WHAT, we don't even know OURSELVES!!  We just print out your invoice, find a box that matches it, and send everything out randomly. There is no playing favorites. There is no chance of me remembering whether or not you, personally, already have this color of corset so maybe I should send you another box. I'm not that awesome. Sorry.


*the REASONS for my company doing this are many:
-  First off, we will have spent the whole entire year vending our wares at festivals. Lots of these corsets will have traveled more miles than any of you have last year....that's just how it is! ;)  We always end up with corsets in odd, random sizes, after our full stock has been picked through from taking the corsets to 20 different shows. When we have lonely, leftover corsets, they always cause us problems, because we can't re-stock all of the sizes (most fabrics will have been discontinued) and the customers will come into the booth, fall in love with something, and we won't have it in their size. The NEAT THING about this, for the Black Friday Grab Bag Event is that lots of these will be fabrics that you've never seen if you haven't attended one of our events!
-This is a FANTASTIC opportunity for new customers that haven't felt able to afford our corsets yet! Sometimes, you just need to be able to commit a little "less" money to "try something out" and then you'll be hooked! We LOVE when we convert new ladies to our corsets, so the loss of money from the original price is totally fine!
-We have a website where customized corsets can be ordered, but despite all of our best efforts, there can still be misunderstandings about measuring and fit, and we still get returns. Since these are one-of-a-kind pieces, it's hard to sell them, so they go into grab bags!
-a VERY SMALL PERCENTAGE of these corsets and skirts will be "AS-IS" pieces, which will mean that there will be cosmetic flaws, irregular stitching or seams, or possible fabric stains. In the past, we've ended up clearing out a lot more pieces like this, so we're pretty much left with nothing. I would say that 97% of the stuff in our bags this year is BRAND NEW and in perfect condition!!!
-I TRULY DO love my customers, and I'm deeply grateful for all that they do for me! I see this as an opportunity to say "thank you".  This year, we were able to put together TONS of boxes where there were whole entire perfectly matched outfits. Even when we couldn't get a perfect match, we tried our best to put in good, versatile pieces that would be fantastic for costume building. I  just hope that if I try to be generous with you, you'll continue to be generous with me, supporting our company, telling your friends, and WEARING the beautiful things out in the world!!


*Level 1/UNDERBUST: $35 -This includes 1 corset, in the size stated in the title. You can be assured that the style will be an underbust style(yes, that means it goes under your breasts) and the normal price of the corset will be anywhere from $55 up to $149.  I can tell you right now, it's mostly wench corsets (lots of them with built in back boning) and then some Vixens and Torians.

*Level 1/OVERBUST: $65- 1 Overbust Corset, in the size stated. Originally priced at $99-$199.

*Level 2/Underbust: $89- Yup, this price is up from last year, and I think you'll easily see why! These boxes are a MILLION times nicer than the last ones. You will get one underbust corset PLUS AN ADDITIONAL ONE TO TWO ITEMS, with their total value combined being $149-$225. This year, instead of just doing "numbers" of items in the packages, we're doing more of a "total value" type of system. The more you spend, the more you save.

*Level 2/Overbust $115-You will get an Overbust Corset plus ONE to TWO items with the original prices totaling $160-$250.

*Level 3/Underbust $150- This is EASILY our best section this year. We put together a LOT of the most amazing level 3's I've ever seen. I was honestly jealous packing them up, thinking about how much I would personally love to save that much money and get something that good! Anyhow, these are THREE TO FOUR items(including the corset), totaling around $250 on up to over $400 for a lot of them.

*Level 3/Overbust $170-One overbust corset (mostly, we had Duchesses, Auroras, and Crossfire corsets this year,  however, the patterns changed halfway through the year, so these are all the discontinued pattern) and then you get 2-3 other items for a TOTAL OF THREE TO FOUR ITEMS that will have a retail cost of about $250 to $430.

*DELUXE-Level 4 Underbust $250-This is where all of our brand new long tailed corsets, peplum coats, and two-piece sets went. These items ALONE start at $250, and then go drastically up from there. This is where we put all of our entire, matched outfits. You'll either get the coat style piece and two skirts to layer together(lots of GORGEOUS full length bustles in these!), OR a skirt and a blouse......or whatever awesome stuff we chose to throw in. We made them good, TRUST ME. The total original price of all the items will be around $375 on up to $550. It IS good to note that we didn't have very many sleeves for the coat pieces this year. We realized that we always to such warm events, and we would sell the bodies, but not the matching sleeves, then be leftover with tons of sleeves that go to nothing at the end. I have a whole stack of Victorian sleeves that I'm going to have to just throw away, along with a few pirate coat sets, just because we don't have the fabric anymore!

*DELUXE-Level 4 Overbust-$270-This will be our smallest category this year, as the overbust coats are not produced on high levels, seeing as they take so long to produce and they are a higher ticket item. This level ALSO INCLUDES TWO-PIECE TAILED SETS, such as empire corsairs or steampunk jackets matched with Torians or Wenches. You'll still get whole, matched outfits, so at least 3 pieces, on up to 5 pieces total. The normal cost of these boxes would be $375 up to $650.


*NO COUPON CODES OR STORE CREDIT CAN BE USED TO PURCHASE THESE! I'm truly, very sorry, but if you try to use a coupon code or previous store credit, we will automatically refund your money and relist the items. These are already discounted so much that we can't allow them to go on sale further.

*NO REFUNDS OR EXCHANGES!  This is where you ABSOLUTELY must measure yourself correctly! if you don't have a measuring tape, grab a ribbon or string, pull it around the smallest part of your waist, usually above the belly button, and hold tight! Then, you can lie that down and measure it! DO NOT GUESS!  If you're buying these for a gift, double-check the measurement, even if that means you're spoiling the surprise!

*DON'T FREAK OUT! I know it can be scary buying things without the ability to get a refund or exchange, but guess what?? Any and ALL of you are welcome to create facebook groups where you can trade items back and forth. The only thing that I have to BEG OF YOU-PLEASE DO NOT USE MY COMPANY NAME IN THE FACEBOOK GROUP NAME! People see this and assume that I'm running the show, and that they will have someone to talk to if the exchange goes wrong or if people are dishonest. I believe the exchange group that was started last year was very successful, but there was certainly some drama over whether or not people could trade "other" things on the page, since the name of the page had "Damsel in this Dress" in it.  We all know how ill-behaved and riotous people can be when they're posting comments and opinions on the internet. Most of us aren't on our best-behavior when we're not having face-to-face conversations.  Honestly, if it were me, I would sell any items that I didn't want on ebay, where you  have a safe payment system and recourse if anything goes wrong. However, that's my *ahem* opinion. Feel free to attack me and call me Hitler. I find that always helps.

*AGAIN, DON'T FREAK OUT.  Please, for the love of everything good and decent, try on your items (not upside down....the tags are at the top, like everything else.....we've had a lot of angry upside-down-my-corset-doesn't-fit-customers lately, and they're always immensely relieved when they find they got a PERFECT fit when they wear it correctly!) and remember that corsets are a different beast than your normal clothing. They take a bit of "breaking in" and generally stretch out 1-2 inches with a lot of pressure being put on them by your warm, malleable human body!  If you measure correctly, and your waist measurement falls within the size permitted, there should not be a problem! When we sell our corsets, we give a "size range" that they should fit. We start with a smaller number, say...."32 inches" and that number is the actual measurement of the corset itself! (When we measure our corsets, we pull them VERY tightly, stretched, like they would be on your body. If we just haphazardly laid the measuring tape on it without pulling it, the accuracy would be nothing! ) Then, we give a range....so 32-34 inches. This means that if you measure your waist and come up with 32, then this corset should come fully closed on you, after wearing for about day. If you measure a 33, you'll have a one inch gap, and if you measure a 34, you'll have a two inch gap. Make sense? It does to us, and it's worked VERY WELL for nearly 10 years of my company being open!
Yup, friends, this is how it is when you're trying to get these packages. The corsets and packets of blood, and all of you are "sharks". 

*MY DEAR FRIENDS....DO NOT FREAK OUT! This is the worst part, but I have to let you know. Every single year, thousands of customers get their orders swiped right out of their cart! In online stores, you don't actually OWN an item until you've gone through the payment process completely.  This is because, with online shopping, there is so much indecision, and putting things in your "cart" and then deciding against it. How HORRIBLE would it be if I MADE IT SO YOU  HAD TO BUY what what in your cart??? This would be a nightmare with ANY WEBSITE! They cannot allow that to happen! It would cause problems for the buyers and the sellers!  Stop and think about it logically for a few moments.....about how wretched it would be if you had no choice except to buy things in your online shopping cart. THUS, I cannot be responsible for items being swiped out of your possession. Below, I will help you to avoid this-

*HOW TO SHOP? So,  honestly, in the past, the people that have had the most success were ones that enlisted their friends and family. Grab your husband, friend, boyfriend, room-mate....let them help you snipe the packages! We will be listing on BOTH OUR ARTFIRE AND ETSY SHOPS!  The MOST HELPFUL tips would be these:
-HAVE ALL  OF YOUR PAYPAL INFORMATION UPDATED! If you don't have a current address, the package will simply get sent to the wrong one. Trying to sort through emails AND package these up is not an option for us.
-MEASURE CORRECTLY BEFOREHAND, and DO NOT buy things that are out of your size range. Yes, we can do alterations on our corsets, but we will NOT do them before your package is sent. Imagine the problems that could cause if everyone just purchased the wrong size, figuring they could get it altered, and then we had to unpackage, alter, and repackage! All of the time wasted would literally kill us!
-BUY THINGS ONE AT A TIME! If you're wanting to put several things in your cart and then buy them all, hoping to save on shipping, it will kill you. We DO NOT COMBINE SHIPPING on these packages. Everything is pre-packed, crammed as full as the boxes can go. We will not ship your items all in one big box. No need for us to try to sort out tons of orders and put them together. Let's make it simple, friends!

*I will be posting helpful hints and ideas this whole week, leading up to the special day, so stay tuned! I will most likely sound like a broken record at the end, and that's just okay!


  1. Michelle, I blame you for the lack of sleep I will be getting during this event. Linnea will undoubtedly keep me awake and scream at me (while sitting next to me) to, "OMG THEY ARE UP BUY THEM ALL!!!!!" Sigh, it's a good thing I am fond of both of you :D


  2. *Glares at Jack.* Shut up, that's why! ;)

  3. what will the postage be to the United Kingdom? thanks :o)

  4. Happy you are doing this again. Looking forward to grabbing a few more pieces.

    As for the mismatched sleeves and sets, why not list them? Someone might like the mismatched sleeves or decide to have a bodice of one color but the sleeves of another?

    Or, unstitch them and cram them in fabric boxes. =)

    Either way, I look forward to what you've got in store.

    1. I was going to suggest listing the sleeves also, I do see many people wanting sleeves to go with corsets that they didnt think they were going to need! (also very much a fan of mismatched color sleeves to a bodice!)

    2. Please Michelle, by all means list the stray sleeves! I now realize after my special order I should have gotten some Vic sleeves to swap out along with my pirate sleeves.

      And speaking of pirate sleeves, here's a helpful hint to add to your list. I say this because it happened to me and after my 15 minute meltdown over it, calming myself down, then thinking to myself, "What would Michelle say?" I laughed at myself for half an hour after I figured it out. If you get an outfit with pirate sleeves (I don't know if this also applies to the Vic sleeves too), don't freak out if the sleeves appear to have been sewn wrong. Just switch the arms around.

      Looking forward to the feeding frenzy!!

    3. My nomination for the underbust grab bag to go to Tina Roberts (Missouri): Since Tina has been dressing in your clothing she has shown her vibrant, sexy, witty and wonderful personality to the whole world. Your clothes have made her more confident and also have contributed to world peace, reversing global warming, and begun to cure the dysfunction in Washington - keep up the good work!

  5. OMG what's the time zone :O i can't wait for it

  6. Michelle, you're too good to us! I'm soooo excited! I look forward to this every year, cause I'm a sucker for surprise boxes! It's better than Christmas!!! AHHH!

  7. I agree with M-Z-T, btw. My question is, what is the difference between Level 2 and 3 Overbust packages? Just the original price of the items? They look the same to me..
    Level 2/Overbust $125-You will get one Overbust Corset, and TWO TO THREE items
    *Level 3/Overbust $170 One Overbust Corset and then you get 2-3 other items for a TOTAL OF THREE TO FOUR ITEMS

    1. the difference it the total retail price that you get for the base price you pay. The Level 3s are worth a bit more...let me make sure the language us clear, though!

  8. Ah nooo I am going to be at TRF on friday. ;-; I WILL MISS THE LUCKY BAG EVENT. I am so sad. And I just got my first paycheck from my new job too.. *le weep* You lucky girls!! Good luck with the lucky bag event, Michelle!!!

  9. Hmmm...Don't have any overbust corsets, does one still wear a bra with those? (Hoping to get a lvl 2 in my size this year.)

    1. The overbusts work best with a bra.

  10. Can the items in the level 2 under bust also be corsets? Just wondering :) my first time and I'm excited

  11. Sooo excited!! Thanks for ALL you do Michelle!

    Also agreed, DO NOT throw away those sleeves! I think mismatched sleeves would be awesome and would buy them at the right price or love them stuffed in a grab bag box.

  12. Let me see if I can grab these questions quick! Crystal, every single bag will have a corset in it, so THAT'S awesome! And for the overbust corsets, my personal opinion is that no corset can give the same "shape" as a bra, unless you build an actual bra into them, which I don't have the talent for. I always prefer people to wear a bra with them, just because then you already have more of a "lifted" rounded shape to put the corset over. Hopefully that makes sense! ;)

  13. Excited and nervous, what is the largest size that will be there? I'm considering Gastric Bypass next year and will be buying new stuff along the way but would love something I can wear now and gift on to someone else....

  14. btw - the nomination for Tina Roberts came from her utterly adoring husband even though it was listed as anonymous. contact info available upon request :-)

  15. Will there be ones in small sizes like 22-24? My sister and I are a little small around and I just want to check

    1. I'm wondering the same thing, but I need something in the 20-21 range.

  16. Replies
    1. They say 'Mountain Standard Time' on their facebook page...hoping that's correct?

  17. Also want to check, as I'm oddly sized - Will you have Waist size 28-30, and bust size 40ish overbust levels ??

  18. 20% off of custom orders...can it be jackets and other things, or just corsets?

  19. NO NO NO Don't do it! Offer them up on etsy or where ever. I bet there are folks who would love to use them! I might be one of them!!
    " I have a whole stack of Victorian sleeves that I'm going to have to just throw away, along with a few pirate coat sets, just because we don't have the fabric anymore!"

  20. Have you seen this musical ode to Black Friday? http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WQEyKJTTy9k

  21. OMG, *please* don't throw away those sleeves!! (1) I have a few pieces in discontinued fabrics and maybe you have the sleeves that match, (2) Who says sleeves have to match? :D

  22. Also, why not match up the patterned sleeves to solid corsets?? Please save the sleeves!

  23. Hi,
    I found a grand bumper offers of Team Beachbody Black Friday Sales.
    Beachbody products are all about fitness and health.
    I experienced two of the Beachbody's products i.e P90X and Hip Hop Abs and really it works like an awesome workout for me.
    Try it must before thr time runs out.
    Don't waste your time and just go for it.
    The sale is offered till cyber Monday.