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Help - F.A.Q.

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General Information

Where Are You Located?

Our business is based in Vancouver BC (Canada) but we ship world wide.

Are You Affiliated With the (X) Company/Store/Etc.?

Art of Adornment is entirely independently owned and operated (read more About Us). We have been asked this question a lot lately because of the rising mainstream popularity of Gothic and vintage-influenced fashion, and the flourish of stores that have opened in recent years which work with similar styles. Any affiliations we have with other people can be found on our About Us page.

How Many People Work There?

Technically only 1, but other designers' work is frequently sold on consignment, so total combined efforts are sometimes more like 3-4.

Do You Have A Walk-In Retail Store Location?

No, however we sometimes vend at special local events. Retailers in other parts of the world which carry Art of Adornment items can be found on the About Us page.

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Photography

Can I Use Your Pictures On My Website, or Post Them In My Blog?

Yes! You can right-click to save them from our site or ask us to email you copies. You must not alter them to remove or conceal our legal copyright watermark or logo graphic ("Art of Adornment"), and you must save the images to your own web host for display (no hotlinking!).

I Am A Photographer/Clothing Designer/MUA/Filmmaker - Can I Shoot Your Designs?

Yes! We are currently seeking people that would like to collaborate with us for their shoots in exchange for credit and copies of the resulting images (see terms below).

Are You Looking For Models?

We are currently seeking people with an "alternative" edge who would like to model our handcrafted products. However if you are already working with a photographer, since they will be the copyright holder of the finished images they must be willing to share their work with us under our terms (below).

What Are Your Terms For Photo Shoots?

Since we are a VERY small company, terms will usually be TF (trade for prints, digital files, etc.). Photographers will be required to sign a release form granting us commercial use, however they would still retain full copyright and the ability to use the images however and wherever they please. We would also add your images (and credits) to our galleries here, on MySpace, Flickr, FaceBook, DeviantArt and others in an effort to further promote all of our work. You have the option of borrowing accessories for your shoot (intimates like stockings and tights excluded), or purchasing them at a discount. For more information contact us and include a link to your online portfolio/website/CV. You can also message us through Model Mayhem. Serious inquiries only please.

Can I Send You A Photo Of Me For Your "Customers" Gallery?

You are welcome to send a picture of yourself wearing our accessories for consideration to be added to our gallery, using our contact form. Make sure photos are well-lit, minimum 500 pixels high, and that the pieces you are wearing are in focus. Include your name (or nickname), and the photographer's name. We cannot guarantee your photo will be used, but we will try to include as many as we can. Make sure you have the photographer's permission and the permission of anyone else in the photo with you before you submit your picture! By submitting your photo you are unconditionally granting us permission to display it on the internet, as well as on any other promotional materials, online and offline, royalty-free in perpetuity. Photos may be cropped, lightened/darkened, etc. for better presentation.

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Our Jewelry

How Do I Clean And Care For My Jewelry?

Please see our Choker Care page for tips on cleaning and storage all of our jewelry.

I Have Metal Allergies. Am I Going To Have A Reaction?

Nickel allergies are common, although many with allergies can wear nickel for a few hours without problems. Any metal components which are known to contain nickel have been noted in the product description.

What Does "Plated" Mean?

Plating is a process where one metal is applied over another in a thin layer by using an electrical current to bond the two metals. This is done for three reasons: 1. to add a layer of protection to softer metals (rhodium or nickel plating), 2. to reduce tarnish (rhodium, nickel or gold plating), or 3. to reduce cost. A product made with a thin layer of precious metal (e.g. silver) over a less expensive base metal (e.g. brass) costs much less than a solid piece of precious metal. Plating is not as durable as solid metal however; it will eventually wear away with use, a process which can take several years depending on how frequently you wear it and how well you care for it.

What Is The Difference Between "Silver Plate", "Sterling Plate", "Silver Fill" and "Solid Sterling"?

When we use the word "silver", we don't mean silver coloured metal, we mean genuine silver ore. However we will use the generic term "silvertone" to describe metals such as nickel or steel if we are not 100% sure of the metal content.

Solid Sterling:

The total metallic content of the component (solidity) is .925 silver with only .075 copper additive (92.5% pure silver ore = "sterling"). Almost always stamped with the hallmark "925" to indicate purity.

Sterling Plate:

A very thin layer of sterling silver has been electrically bonded to a core of base metal, usually steel or brass. Components are not hallmarked since they are not solid sterling silver.

Silver Fill:

The same as Sterling Plate, however the layer is much thicker. Even so, these components cannot be hallmarked.

Silver Plate:

A somewhat generic term nowadays, meaning a very thin layer of silver ore over a base metal. The layer could be sterling silver or even an alloy of sterling silver blended with tin, nickel and/or rhodium (in other words, not much silver at all). Components are never hallmarked. The majority of our "silver plate" components are actually "sterling plate".

What Is the Difference Between "Antiqued" and "Antiqued Oxidized" Silver?

Normally polished silver is very bright, very shiny, and very white in colour. "Antiqued" silver is more steel-grey in colour, with the deep areas in the design darkened (by use of a pigmenting agent) and the raised areas still very shiny. "Antiqued oxidized" silver has been treated with a chemical that actually changes the surface of the metal; it has a rich all-over matte finish ("patina"), is steel-grey in colour, with the deepest areas in the design significantly darkened to imitate considerable age.

What Is "Rhodium"?

Rhodium is a silver-coloured precious metal from the platinum family that is highly scratch- and tarnish-resistant. It has a slightly less reflective finish than sterling silver which makes it a great compliment to antiqued silver jewelry, since antiqued finishes are darker in colour and less reflective. We use mostly rhodium-plated components in our jewelry for both these reasons. Also, rhodium is usually safe for people with sensitive skin since it does not contain nickel (which is known to cause allergic reactions).

Does Crystal Contain Lead? Is It Dangerous?

Crystal is usually about 30% lead. You cannot absorb lead through your skin - it is only transferable through inhalation and ingestion. Crystal should not be handled by children, since they often put objects in their mouths. Lead is present in many other household objects (old pewter, plumbing pipes, potting soil, fine glassware, etc.); always wash your hands after handling these objects, and never drink from a chipped or cracked crystal glass.

What Is "Vintage"? Why Use It?

The term "vintage" (when not concerning wines) means that something is several years old, usually 25 years or more. However it is grossly misused nowadays to mean "anything that looks old" but is not actually old at all. When we say "vintage" though, we mean it: components that are 25+ years old. We use them for 3 reasons: 1.) there is some truly amazing stuff out there that isn't being made anymore, 2.) reusing antique materials helps reduce waste, and 3.) nothing says "retro" quite like the real thing. Using real vintage components makes an old-fashioned style piece look much more authentic!

Where Do You Get Your (X) Components? Can I Buy Some From You?

Sorry - a great chef never reveals her secret ingredients! But if you are looking for jewelry-making supplies, we recommend giving Eclectic Craft & Jewelry Supply a try.

Do You Sell Kits So I Can Make Your Designs For Myself Or My Store?

Sorry, no. We like to offer items people cannot easily find elsewhere, which makes them that much more special and personal to those who collect them. It is considered disrespectful (and illegal under copyright law) to duplicate another artist's work and sell it as your own. Even craft stores who sell kits and patterns do so under license that they are for personal use only, not for reselling (if you check the packaging there is usually some fine print to this effect). The best thing you can do is to take a class, or start experimenting with materials you can buy at your local craft shop. You will come up with something unique that will be more likely to attract attention because it is different and new.

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Sizes

How Are Your Items Sized? What Size Should I Order?

The measurement you see beside "Fits (X) Size:" is the natural body measurement the item will best fit, NOT the measurement of the actual item. If you do not have a dressmakers' measuring tape, take a piece of string or ribbon and mark where the end meets, then measure it while flat. If you are unsure which size to order, contact us and we would be happy to help you.

Do You Do Custom Sizing?

Yes! Shortening: almost all jewelry items can be shortened at no extra charge (include your measurement in the "Message" box during checkout). Lengthening: silver-plated and gunmetal-plated choker chains can be lengthened to up to 3 inches at no extra charge, but sterling choker chains, beaded necklaces, choker ribbons, and pocket watch chains will require a small fee for lengthening. Our chokers tend to look better on larger sizes if custom made from scratch rather than just lengthening the chain; ask us for a quote before puchase, since some designs may require a fee and some not.

My Item Doesn't Fit. Can I Return It?

See our Returns page for information on what items are not returnable. We may be able to make alterations instead.

How Tight Should My Choker Be Worn?

Very snug, but you should still be able to slip a finger under the band without too much difficulty. If you wear it too tight, you could stretch out or tear the fabric, and cut off your breathing!

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Ordering

Do I Have To Create An Account In Order To Shop?

Yes, but that is not a bad thing! Creating an account allows us to provide you with accurate shipping rates, order history, shipment tracking, product re-stock alerts, a favorites list and an optional newsletter subscription. It also speeds up the checkout process for you since you can store several shipping addresses. You will not be asked to enter financial data (credit card numbers, etc.). We only use your information to process your order and do not "spam" or share this information with anyone.

Do You Have A Printed Catalogue?

No, because our selection changes on an irregular basis.

Can I Place My Order Over The Phone?

Sorry, we cannot take credit card orders over the phone. See our Payment page for offline alternatives.

Can I Combine My Purchase With Items From Your Ebay or Etsy Store?

Sorry, no. Separate orders must be shipped separately. Our shipping system is automatically integrated with our site, therefore once an order has been placed and paid for it cannot be combined with any others.

I Just Placed An Order, Can I "Add On"?

No. Once placed, an order cannot be changed. However we can cancel it and refund your payment if you want to place a new order and buy several items together.

Can I "Reserve" An Item If I'm Not Ready To Pay Yet?

No. Many of our items are one-of-a-kind or limited edition, so to be fair to everyone who might want them, everything is sold on a first-come-first-served basis.

Do You Do "Backorders"?

No, and this is actually a good thing. We would not want to disappoint you by taking an order only to tell you several weeks later that the item is no longer available (we use many rare and vintage materials which sometimes sell out unexpectedly), and that you had waited all that time for nothing. See question below.

Can You Tell Me When An Item Will Be Back In Stock?

Mostly, yes. If we know when an item will be re-stocked, a date will be displayed on the item's page next to "Availability". This date is approximate however, so we recommend you request an alert via email to be notifed as soon as the status has been updated (form is under the estimated re-stock date).

Do You Have More Of (X) Item?

If an item is marked "discontinued", "one of a kind" or "limited edition", quantity is limited. Otherwise handcrafted items can usually be made in higher quantities upon request (contact us with item #'s and how many you need). Items that are no longer listed in our store have either sold out or cannot be made anymore due to scarce materials.

Do You Wholesale?

No. Most of our products are handmade by skilled artisans, not by machines, so they cannot be mass-produced quickly and cheaply. If you are interested in reselling, we offer a 20% discount on orders valued over $200 (click here for details).

Do You Take Custom Design Orders?

If they are based around a current design, usually we can accommodate. Basic changes (colour of beads, add more embellishments, lengthen, etc.) are possible on most items. Contact us for a quote before purchase. Please note that we do not take custom requests for hats or wood boxes, nor will we copy another merchant's designs.

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Technical Problems

* FIRST, CHECK THAT YOUR BROWSER IS SET TO ALLOW "COOKIES" AND HAS "JAVASCRIPT" ENABLED *


I Emailed You But Did Not Get A Reply. Why?

This is likely because: 1.) it got filtered as spam or bounced because your inbox was full, 2.) you have not waited 24 hours for our reply, 3.) your email address is no longer valid or was entered incorrectly, or 4.) your question has already been answered on our site. To avoid our messages being filtered as spam, add contact @ artofadornment.ca (without spaces) to your contact list. Some SBCglobal/ATT/Earthlink users are not receiving our emails regardless; this is an issue with your ISP and beyond our control. Try re-sending from a different email address.

Why Can't I Create An Account?

It is almost always due to a typing error. Ensure that your email address and password are entered correctly (type data in full - do not allow your computer to fill it in for you automatically), that your entries contain no unnecessary blank spaces, and that your Caps Lock key is off. Also, avoid using abbreviations. If you cannot remember if you have created an account here before, try logging in with your email address. If your email is registered but the password is incorrect, you will see an error notice to that effect and can use the "forgot password" function.

Why Can't I Sign In?

See question above. Remember, your email address is your login ID - if you change it in your account it will become your new login. If you checked everything carefully and still cannot log in, it is possible that your email address had a typing error during registration. You will have to sign up for a new account with a different email address.

I Forgot My Password And Clicked the Link To Get A New One. Why Hasn't It Come?

This is likely because: 1.) it got filtered as spam or bounced because your inbox was full, 2.) your email address is no longer valid or was entered incorrectly, or 3.) some SBCglobal/ATT/Earthlink users are not receiving our emails; this is an issue with your ISP and is beyond our control. To avoid our messages being filtered as spam, add contact @ artofadornment.ca (without spaces) to your contact list and try again. If you suspect cause #2 or #3, sign up for a new account with a different email address.

Why Can't I See Some Of Your Pages?

This may be because your browser: 1.) security settings are set too high, 2.) is not set to accept "cookies", or 3.) is not set to allow "javascript". Cookie and javascript settings are usually under Tools > Options > Privacy (path varies by browser, so look for Privacy settings regardless). Privacy should be set to "medium" or "remember history". Some mobile devices don't allow cookies, and some older ones don't allow javascript, so you may have to shop from a PC. Also, pop-up blockers may prevent our image zooms from loading. Try temporarily disabling the blocker.

I Tried To Check Out But It's Not Working. Help?

This could be because: 1.) your address was entered incorrectly (check postal code closely, avoid abbreviations, and remove any blank spaces before entries in each field), 2.) your address was not entered EXACTLY as it appears on your credit card statement (shipping to a gift/work address?), or 3.) your browser does not have "cookies" or "javascript" enabled (see question above). If paying with a PayPal account, it may help to use the same email address here as you do there. If paying with a prepaid card, see Prepaid VISA/AMEX/MC Gift Cards. If you still experience problems, it may be that your card has an automatic anti-theft security restriction which prevents online processing (common for people who have never shopped online or internationally before). Call the number on the back of the card to lift any restrictions before trying again.

Why Won't The Checkout Let Me Ship To An Address Different Than My Home?

It is actually an anti-fraud measure put in place by banks and credit cards as well as PayPal, but it can be quickly resolved by adding the address to your payment source account before purchase. See Non-Billing/Gift Address for details.

Why Did I Not Receive A Confirmation Email After Placing An Order?

Probably because: 1.) it got filtered as spam or bounced because your inbox was full, 2.) your email address is no longer valid or was entered incorrectly, 3.) your order was not completed, or 4.) some SBCglobal/ATT/Earthlink users are not receiving our emails; this is an issue with your ISP and is beyond our control. First, log in and view your Order History to see if your order was processed. If you cannot log in, it was cause #2, and you will have to sign up for a new account with a different email address in the future. If you suspect cause #4, switch to a different email address to avoid future problems. To avoid our messages being filtered as spam, add contact @ artofadornment.ca (without spaces) to your email contact list.

Why Am I Not Receiving Newsletters Or Product Re-Stock Alerts?

First, log in and check that you have opted in to these services. If you did but you are not receiving them, it is likely because: 1.) they got filtered as spam or bounced because your inbox was full, 2.) your email address is no longer valid or was entered incorrectly, or 3.) some SBCglobal/ATT/Earthlink users are not receiving our emails; this is an issue with your ISP and is beyond our control. If you cannot log in, it was cause #2, and you will have to sign up with a different email address. If you suspect cause #3, switch to a different email address. To avoid our messages being filtered as spam, add contact @ artofadornment.ca (without spaces) to your email contact list.

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