Saturday, January 31, 2009

Scam update

Well, the emails about Ms. Katie Johson have slowed down, which leads me to believe that the whole operation is now using different names and emails. If you receive other scam emails that have different names but are still similar, keep sending them to me and I will keep posting the information here.
I just got this email from ...Thanks Tricia!

"""Hi Amanda,
I just found your blog while trying to verify this, apparently, scam-artist's information. I had a feeling right from the get go that something was not "kosher" with this order I was receiving from Australia. They even had the nerve to give me a "ship to" address that checked out to be the Australian and New Zealand Banking Group...hello, I wasn't born yesterday. So I proceeded to give a price quote and that's when they responded with the BS about their courier. My emails are almost verbatim to the others posted on your site. Only the contact person is using the name Andrew Partison. Thankfully I knew better and was very suspicious but this certainly wasted my time and made me a little more cynical and sad about the world. So sorry to those that got taken.

So the contact person has changed to Andrew Partison but the rest is still the same. Pass any information you have along to other crafters so that no one gets taken in by these jerks.
Crafters unite against scammers!

Thursday, January 22, 2009

My first glass pendants

The lampworking glass shop we built last Fall is finally being put to use! We got our first lesson the other day and started making pendants. The one on the right is the first one I made, it cracked before I could get it in the kiln. Too much stress from working it too much, I guess. The one on the left was actually successful, it has a nice design swirl on it, a good shape and a good loop on the back that is melted in to the back. It's fun to do but it takes a long time to slowly melt the borosilicate glass to make it do what you want. We still like fabric dying the best but will keep trying and get good at it, too!

Monday, January 19, 2009

YAY!!! I'm published...

Some fun news for a change :) The new Bead&Button Book, Chic & Easy Beading Vol.3 will feature a project that I wrote! The project featured is my Wire Wrapped Hematite Hourglass Bracelet that won the Fire Mountain Gems Contest Bronze Medal in its category in 2005, and that was originally published in an article in Bead&Button magazine in April 2008. I will be offering kits for this project soon on my website

Sunday, January 18, 2009

another day, another scam...

Here's another email I received yesterday from Enchanted Forest Gift Baskets who have alo been targeted by this scam...

"""Dear Amanda,
After surfing the internet I found your blog. I am forwarding to you the emails that were sent to our company. I smelt Scam all over this. I continued to email back in forth, at the same time I contacted the FBI in Florida and reported the activity and they are now investigating it. I thought your bloggers would be interested. No company is to small or to Big not to be targeted. As the econony continues to remain in chaos in the US we will be targeted by these types of scams.Have A Great Day.
Misty Pennington
Corporate Sales
Enchanted Forest Gift Baskets

--- On Sun, 1/18/09, Katie Johson wrote:

From: Katie Johson Subject: RE: REPLY BACK ASAP .....................To: questions@enchantedforestgiftbaskets.comDate: Sunday, January 18, 2009, 4:40 AM

Hello,Thanks for the total quote of my order.The total cost of my order is quite correct and okay by me and I'm ready to pay the bills send me an invoice via email and i will email you my Credit Card. But i just got a response from my shipping Agent that he cannot receive payment via credit or debit card from me at the moment. So i want you to help me Charge another $3000 USD to a shipping agent who is going to pick up my ordered items from you. The $3000 USD that will be sent to the shipping agent is for the shipping of my order plus other items i ordered from different countries which will be deduct from my credit card.Also, I'm compensating you with the sum of $700 USD for the transfer fee and for your efforts. Please note that i should have given the shipping agency my credit card for him to deduct the shipping funds but he told that he doesn't have the facilities to charge or debit credit card,so that's why i bring my vote of confidence in you and i don't want you to betray the vote of confidence i put in you, so i want you to transfer the funds to him after you have make the charges and the money charged from my credit card is in your account,then you can now make the transfer to the agent via western union.I will have love to do this my self but there no western union here around me,So the charges you'll make on my credit card will be:Order Fee ($3477.75.00 USD)Agent fee with shipping fare ($3000USD)Transfer Fee plus Your Compensation ($700 USD)Total:($7,177.75USD) Note that my credit card will be charged for the amounts above.Please do get back to me if you are in the office right now so that i can forward my credit card details to you , then you can charge full amount and transfer the agent funds to him via western union or money gram.Thanks for your co-operation & understanding.Hope to read from you ASAP.Thanks and God Bless you"""" end of email

Keep emailing me if you are targeted by this scam, hopefully we can put together a resource for those people being targeted by this, as well as those who are investigating it!

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Crafters are being targeted...

I just received this email from another crafter. Beware of any scams using the names that follow or any of the addresses or situations. This email explained to me more how the scam is actually perpetrated. Here it is:

" My mother was just defrauded for $2500 from a Mark McKenzie at and a Katie Johson at and and who currently uses the email address:

About a month ago, my mother received an email from a lady in Australia, "Katie Johson," who was interested in purchasing a large quanitity of candles from her company.

Ms. Johson claimed to want to order a huge amount of products to be shipped to Sydney Australia. Apparently, Katie Johson, had had past business dealings with Cargo Solutions Ltd and convinced my mother that all shipments were to be made with Mr. Mark McKenzie at using Ms. Johnson's Customer ID Number (QP34572955J). Mr. McKenzie claimed to work for Cargo Solutions Ltd. located in England and would have been willing to pick up the shipment in the US and have it shipped to Australia.

According to Mr. McKenzie, the shipment would cost approximately $2,500 for an express 2-3 day delivery from the US to Ms. Johson's home in Sydney Australia. This would include all transfers fees, customs fees, pick-up and delivery charges. Mr. McKenzie from "Cargo Solutions" asked that a moneygram or western union payment be sent to NAME OF RECEIVER: MARK MCKENZIE at ADDRESS: 566 Cable St, London, E1W 3HB, United Kingdom.

My mother trustingly sent the payment by MoneyGram to Mark McKenzie at 566 Cable St., London, E1W 3HB. Unfortunately, on January 7th, we found out that Ms. Johson's credit cards had been denied due to fraud -- the addresses and names on the credit cards given to my mother did not match her name, Katie Johson, and address at Castlereagh Street, Sydney NSW 2000, Australia.

Several fraudulent credit cards were provided by Ms. Johson to purchase the items. The credit cards seem to be authentic but appeared under different names and addresses.

Here is another website related to this particular email address (too bad I viewed it too late:

Also, "Mr. McKenzie" had asked my mother to send a second payment to the fraudulent names and addresses below:

ADDRESS: Black Prince Road, London, SE11 6AB, United Kingdom

ADDRESS: Black Prince Road, London, SE11 6AB, United Kingdom" """" End of email...

The police are investigating this fraud, so anyone with any information can pass it on to me and I will pass it on to the people who need it. Alert anyone you know about this scam, you don't want to be the next target!!!!

Sunday, January 4, 2009

more scams

I've had some responses from other crafters out there who have been targeted by this scam too. And I just got another email, this time from that had basically the exact same text in the body, except instead of Katie Johson, it was Mary Vagner. I'll post the entire email here so you can see it.
"Hello there, I want to buy some good from your company to my new store in Australia, I will like to know if you accept credit card and ship internationally as I have got new shops opening in other part of the world. So please let me know if you can assist me with the order I will await your prompt response as soon as you receive this mail,I will be very glad if you treat this email with good concern... You can reply back to Love from Mr and Mrs Vagner"
The strange grammar should tip you off right away. Thanks to Amber from Tea Cozies by ElDonna for tracking this email down--it originated from Nigeria. If you get anything similar to this, DON'T SEND THEM ANYTHING.