Give the gift small icon
Give the gift big icon
Give the gift
of Artifcts

The perfect gift for the person
in your life who has everything.

Give a gift Close
Exclusive articles, interviews, and insights covering downsizing & decluttering, genealogy, photos and other media, aging well, travel, and more. We’re here to help you capture the big little moments and stories to bring meaning and even order to all of life’s collections for generations.
Share With Friends
Telling My Story Without the Pressure of a Memoir

Reading time: 4 minutes 

Many of us feel overwhelmed by the prospect of telling our stories never mind authoring a memoir. One. More. Thing. To do. And, "How do I even get started?”  

Companies exist that will send you daily and weekly prompts to help; some will even call you. You answer a question at a time until you get to some state of "done." This is a solid, time-tested strategy for any of life’s larger tasks, breaking it down into something smaller.  

Those question-by-question approaches are not for everyone. You may feel pestered as well as stressed if you “get behind.” And not all of us are great with open-ended questions that lack true personalization.  

Another option is to work with a professional writer. No, not someone you meet for 30 or 60 minutes and with their notes they write or record your life story. Really? That’s a neat trick. If only life were so simple.  

We’re talking about the professionals like with LifeBook Memoirs, whose work is a true art, a physical family heirloom, and a gift. The level of care, privacy, and personalization to your needs, coupled with the product they print makes anyone a believer in the power of a memoir. 

But what if you want are not yet ready to plunge into the time and cost of a memoir and still want to privately make progress on your own? That's what we're talking about here today.

The Artifcts Approach to Writing Your Story, Your Memoir 

I’ve been telling my story through travel mementos, collections, books, photos and more, slowly but surely through my Artifcts. No outline. No grand scheme. As I come across or receive something that inspires me, I Artifct it.  

I'll use one of my most recent Artifcts as a simple example. I took my 13-year-old daughter to see the Broadway show Six. She loves choir and drama, and yet she couldn’t have been less excited in the days leading up to the show. I stayed quiet (which if you know me is quite a feat) and waited. The lights dimmed, the six wives and the all-female band took the stage. And ... magic! 

My daughter was enthralled, smiling, and shooting looks at me that said, “Wow!” After the show she told me it was even better than Hamilton. Never could I ever have imagined anything would outshine Hamilton in her eyes.  

When we got home, I Artifcted the physical playbill, the digital one with the six wives’ signatures, and a pic of my daughter at the theatre. Why? I’m not going to keep that playbill, but I am going to keep the memory of that day for always, for her, for me. 

Artifct of Broadway musical Six from Egoody

Fun fact: When I later searched Artifcts to pull up my Artifct, I found a second Artifct for Six. I had forgotten that my co-founder took her daughter to Six, too. Don’t you love uncovering surprise connections? 

The Best of Social Media, Meets the Best of Artifcts 

I always tell people that when we built Artifcts, all the social media giants were on Capitol Hill defending themselves and their policies. We had the opportunity to build something better. So, I’ve been privately Artifcting the big little moments in my life through the objects I collect without the pressure of view counts and follows. 

Then one day about two years into Artifcts, a genealogist challenged me to show how Artifcts could easily help someone to tell their life story. Apparently this is the holy grail of the genealogy world. I eagerly accepted that challenge and gave myself 10 minutes to complete it. 

How? Like Lewis Carroll’s Alice's Adventures in Wonderland, I began at the beginning, using the Artifcts I had already created to tell my story in full color (and with audio, video, and supporting documentation, too).  

      1. Created a new Artifct 
      2. Titled it. I was literal, “My Life Story.” 
      3. Picked a category. I used “Life Moments: Other Life Moments.” 
      4. Filled in the story. Within the 10 minutes, I wrote an 1,100-word story that included approximately 40 Artifcts via @ mentions and wove in each of my family members, key friends and other loved ones with @ mentions, too, giving them instant ‘View’ access to my story.
      5. Added documentation. Totally optional, but in this case I chose to privately attach my birth and marriage certificates. 
      6. Tagged it. #LifeStory and #Genealogy made sense to me for single-click sorting to see other Artifcts with the same tags in the future. 


This 2.5 minute video shows you the @ feature in action.

Imagine the surprise of the genealogist who challenged me when I privately shared the Artifct with her and it was not just a story, but a multi-media surprise of layered stories about myself, my loved ones, the places of been, and the experiences I have accumulated, aka life!

The text of an Artifct blurred out for privacy but showing the title and names of linked Artifcts within the text

The green text represents the linked Artifcts that are sprinkled throughout my "life story" Artifct.
Don’t have 40 Artifcts? You could tell your story in 5 Artifcts, 30, or 100s. Artifcts you don’t weave into your story will always be one click away in your Artifcts collection for the full-er story! 

How Will You Write and Share Your Life Story? 

Artifcts is a gift. The reality is that if I were no longer here tomorrow, my family would know me and remember me with support from my Artifcts. No life story required.  

The life story Artifct I created is simple to create and a powerful, one-stop opportunity to hear the story from my perspective. And, best yet I can go in and edit and add to it any time I want. My story is not done. My perspective may yet shift, even on the way I see the past changes. And, who knows, one day my Artifcts may be the perfect fodder for LifeBook Memoirs to help me write my memoir. 

No matter how you choose to tell your stories, we beg you:

      • Create a digital backup. And make sure your loved ones know your story exists and how to get to it and ALL the supporting materials (photos, documents etc.) that went into it.
      • Do not let perfection or some idea that your stories don’t matter stand in your way. There’s no one “youer” than you!

We promise you it’s the big little details in life that everyone loves you for and wants to remember you for, too.


You may also enjoy these ARTIcles by Artifcts:

Not Sure What to Write? Tips From Author Jeff Greenwald

The Value of Cherished Objects in Our Life Stories

Timelines Have Arrived at Artifcts!

A Family History in Five Artifcts


© 2023 Artifcts, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Read more
Join Us for the 12 Days of Artifcts, 2023 Edition

Join us for some holiday fun!

Starting Friday, we'll publish a daily theme to Artifct as part of our 12 Days of Artifcts. No turtle doves or partridge in a pear tree, but each of the 12 Days of Artifcts offers you the opportunity to take a breath amidst your holiday merriment and chaos. We'll provide the themes, you provide the Artifcts.

No matter your faith or tradition, all are welcome!

New to Artifcts or only have a free account? That's okay! Once you sign up free, you can create your first 5 Artifcts free and see what you think before buying a membership.

And you'll have no excuse for not being ready as we're giving you a head start by sharing with you today the daily themes. Let's have some fun. And remember, if you make any of your 12 Days of Artifcts public, tag them #12DaysofArtifcts for others to easily discover and enjoy. We look forward to Friday, December 1, for the first of the 12 Days of Artifcts!

Psst ... They'll be ANOTHER surprise on December 1, too. Make sure you pop over to to learn more.

Christmas tree made up of numbers, each with a topic to Artifct


© 2023 Artifcts, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Read more
A New Family Tradition for the Holidays that Won't Cost a Dime

Reading time: 4 minutes

Who doesn’t love the board games, flag football, and annual viewing of movie favorites like Miracle on 34th Street, The Grinch, and Home Alone over the holidays with your family?

Get ready to make some new traditions, have fun with your family, and avoid awkward conversations like, “So, how’s your dating life?” Instead, you'll get to enjoy more of those, “I never knew that about you!” moments! You guessed it, we’re putting a spin on those traditions of togetherness with Artifcts.  

New Family Memories and Traditions with Artifcts 

We asked around, “How do you Artifct with family” and distilled the rather humorous stories we heard into a step-by-step process anyone can do with only hours to spare before everyone descends on the same spot for the holidays (or the next family reunion). 


Sign up free in 30 seconds, start to finish.


Give your family a focus. Here are some ideas to get you started, but we also offer free checklists to inspire you:

  • Recipes. Request modern family favorites to expand your repertoire. Or stick to oldies but goodies that have been passed down through the years. 
  • Photos. “Oldest” and “funniest” competitions could be fun. One person told us they’d like, “You never see her/him in pictures” or “Rarely do you see so many of us together,” types of photos. Go for it! 
  • Family treasures. Again, maybe they’re family heirlooms or modern pieces created by your kids or purchased while traveling and make for a good story. 
  • Going, going, gone. This one made us laugh and came from a reader after our recent “Epilogue: Family Keepers” story. The idea here is that if you are holding on to family heirlooms, antiques, or similar items, and you don’t really WANT to hold on to them, Artifct them to let others know so they have a final chance to call “Dibs!” 
  • All things sports. This final example was from a family of sporting enthusiasts. Maybe your family is made up of musicians, artists, or travelers; same idea applies. This family Artifcted new sports memorabilia, photos, and finishers medals from the year. 


(This step is optional to speed up step #4)

You need only each person's name and email. You can make it easier still by filling in this template and then returning to your Account Settings > Content & Network > Network and clicking “Import” to add them all at once.

Don't have their email addresses? Text, call, or post a message wherever you and your family communicate to ask them to create an account on and then send you their screen name. You can add them easily that way, too.


Create an Artifcts Circle (we have a help video, too!) to easily unite and organize all the Artifcts your family creates and shares. Add each family member to it by selecting from your list if you completed step #3 or by typing in their email address directly.

      • You can choose, per person, to let them invite others or to make another person an “admin” who can add AND delete others. 
      • In the “About” section, describe for your family what this circle is for, e.g., “Let’s gather up and share favorite holiday recipes for the holidays.”  
      • Then click to invite them and leave a comment, e.g.:

“Please create a free Artifcts account so we can swap recipes this year and not lose them in email or texts! Tag them #Turkey23. Bonus points if you add a funny short video snippet, too, so we all know how it turned out! Don’t forget to click share and choose this Circle or we can't see it. Call me if you need help.” 

You can always edit the Circle details, image for the Circle, and members, so don’t worry if you forget something (or someone) or have a change of plans.


When will you have your “Arti Hour, Happy Hour?” to share and chat about all your new Artifcts from the your family? Maybe as the dinner is cooking or perhaps after dessert for everyone to take a few minutes to talk about their Artifcts. You may discover in the sharing new details and related stories you’ve never heard before!

Best yet, once your family starts Artifcting and sharing with your new Circle, they can contribute all year long! Next year you can pick right back up or choose a new theme to capture your family's history.

Togetherness and Remembrance this Holiday Season 

We want to acknowledge and talk about another facet of the holidays: grief.  

We know that the holidays can be an incredibly challenging time for many of us. We’re facing them with loved ones missing for the first time or perhaps facing the end soon. Artifcts can be a powerful way to spend time together capturing memories and stories for now and later, for you and for all your loved ones. It can also make it easier to decide what becomes of all the ‘stuff’ that we ultimately leave behind one day.  

Our free Life Preparedness and After-Loss Support Guide may offer a helpful starting point. You may also find inspiration in some of our past ARTIcles by Artifcts such as Gift Your Loved Ones a Why and The Three Things I Wish My Mother Had Artifcted.  

Consider taking the time to watch the recording from our recent panel discussion about new traditions for the holidays as we process our grief. Our guests, Rachel Donnelly, founder of My AfterLight and Professionals of After Loss Services, and Garrick Colwell, of Kitchen Table Conversations, brought diverse and deep backgrounds to the practical and emotional aspects of grief. 


© 2023 Artifcts, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Read more
New Holiday Recipes to Mingle With Your Favorites

Reading time: 3 minutes

Ah, holiday menus. There tend to be two camps: “We love to mix in new recipes each year to keep things fresh for the holidays,” and "Why mess with perfection? We serve the same menu every year.” 

It’s certainly easier than ever to find new recipes to keep things interesting, whether you have the New York Times recipes app, look forward to the new Bon Appétit magazine each season, or collect cookbooks. And if you have a diverse crowd to feed or a food-enthusiast crowd joining your table, you may have even more motivation and leeway to mix it up. 

This year, as you plan out your menus, we want to encourage you to add one or two new recipes that are crowd pleasers and brain healthy, too. (And be sure to Artifct them all to easily share and recreate in the future. Bonus points if you include video of key steps or the awesome results!)  

Please don’t get any wild ideas that we are contorting your beloved holiday meals to fit some sort of dietary fad. The reality is that the food we eat on a regular basis is as much a part of our healthcare as is the steps we take in a day. If we can integrate more brain healthy crowd-pleasing recipes into our holiday repertoire, too, why shouldn’t we? 

Holiday Perfect, Brain-Healthy Recipes 

Don’t worry, folks, we did not spin up an Artifcts food test kitchen to create recipes to test on you all. We’ve left the science of food to the people with the training and expertise.  

We turned to Annie Fenn, physician, chef, culinary instructor, science advisor, and author of none other than The Brain Health Kitchen: Preventing Alzheimer’s Through Food. She is the only doctor-meets-chef who is exclusively focused on the prevention of Alzheimer’s disease and other dementias. You can find her on Instagram at @BrainHealthKitchen and via her online community’s Brain Health Kitchen newsletter, too. 

Annie has kindly offered up two recipes, one sweet and one savory, for us to share with you today that we hope are homeruns in your household. Each uses easy-to-find ingredients popularly associated with cool weather holidays spent with family and friends.


Pleasantly tart and packed with antioxidants, cranberries deserve to be a part of your brain-healthy dietary pattern year-round. It’s best to enjoy them as a whole fruit rather than dried or juiced, since those processes add a lot of sugar. For this tender pumpkin muffin, you’ll use whole fresh or frozen cranberries, which burst as they bake—adding pockets of jammy fruit. These muffins pack in a nice roster of brain- healthy ingredients, from the almond, oat, and flaxseed batter to the sprinkle of pumpkin seeds on top. Excerpted from The Brain Health Kitchen, by Annie Fenn (Artisan Books). Copyright © 2023.

Pumpkin and Cranberry Muffins

Click the photo for the complete recipe on Artifcts.
Photograph by Alexandra Grablewski.


Typical spinach artichoke dip wears a health halo that comes from having the word spinach in the name. Although it may sound good for you, it is all too often loaded with saturated fat and an excessive amount of sodium in a cheesy base that makes it easy to overindulge. Enter this brain-healthy take on the classic dip, which pairs the spinach—and lots of it— with a creamy, cashew-based sauce. If you love artichokes, you’ll like this version even better than the standard, since the artichoke flavor really shines, and you still get to dip the crispy chips in the hot, creamy dip. Excerpted from The Brain Health Kitchen, by Annie Fenn (Artisan Books). Copyright © 2023. 

Spinach and Artichoke Dip

Click the photo for the complete recipe on Artifcts.
Photograph by Alexandra Grablewski.

And to further help you in all things culinary and introduce some fun new family activities, we’ll be sharing a special Saturday-edition of ARTIcles by Artifcts this weekend. Recipes will be among the topics we'll cover. Stay tuned!


You may also enjoy these additional ARTIcles by Artifcts:

How to Artifct Those Recipes

The Three Things I Wish My Mother had Artifcted

What's Your Stuffing Style

Inspirational Checklist: Culinary Connections


© 2023 Artifcts, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Read more
Evenings with Artifcts Kicks Off October 18

It's that time again! Evenings with Artifcts is back with an all-new five-part series this fall. What topics are on the docket this time around? Telling your story, a culinary lens to women's history, photography tips, and panels to answer all your questions on organization and more will be streaming into your home!

Be sure to RSVP for the events each week for our new series. You're welcome to share with friends, family, and others you meet. The more the merrier!

If you missed any of our past Evenings with Artifcts, catch up now!



Bob Jordan joins Evenings with Artifcts

Week 1: Bob Jordan (@NUZMAN9)

Former television news anchor; professional videographer at Video Family Biographies



Related content: 

- Watch the replay on YouTube ->

- Interested in storytelling tips for your Artifcts? Check out this ARTIcles story.

Gena Philibert-Ortega joins Evenings with Artifcts

Week 2: Gena Philibert-Ortega (@GENAORTEGA)

Author, researcher, and instructor whose focus is family, food, and social history + material culture



Related content: 

- Eager for more? Check out Gena's book: From the Family Kitchen: Discover Your Food Heritage and Preserve Favorite Recipes

- Artifct all things culinary with help from our culinary checklist and "How to Artifct Recipes

- Watch the replay on YouTube ->

Linda Pordon joins Evenings with Artifcts

Week 3: Linda Pordon (@LINDAP)

Interiors and brand photographer



Related content: 

- ARTIcles by Artifcts: Three Tips for Elevating Yout At-Home Photography

- Artifcts Inspirational Checklists: Photographs

- Watch the replay on YouTube ->

Organizing for the Holidays on Evenings with Artifcts

Week 4: Professional Panelists Talk Organizing & the Holidays

Interior design, organizing, and paper declutter



Related content: 

- ARTIcles by Artifcts: Decluttering Targets in Your Home

- Artifcts Inspirational Checklists: Decluttering

- When the avalanche of catalogs hits, save the back cover, then unsubscribe here.

- Watch the replay on YouTube ->

Surviving Downsizing on Evenings with Artifcts

Week 5: Survival Tips from a Serial Downsizer (@MATT)

Father, world traveler, and serial downsizer



Related content: 

- ARTIcles by Artifcts, including: The True Story of One Man's Triumph Over 'Stuff'

- Artifcts Inspirational Checklists: Decluttering

- Watch the replay on YouTube ->

If you'd like to suggest a topic or speaker for future events, share with us at


© 2023 Artifcts, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Read more
Tips for an Easier Move with Artifcts

Reading time: 5 minutes 
I grew up in the same house. My first move was to college. Me and my minimalist tendencies, I would have been fine with a backpack of clothing and a laundry bin of bedding and essentials. My mother being the maximalist had different plans. Let’s just say I was the only freshman with a banana hanger.  
Fast forward 20 something years. I’ve moved three times in as many years. And yet … it’s still not easy. The stuff doesn’t move itself. It requires planning, staging, boxing, moving, unpacking, and, in our case, a good dose of, “Mom, did you pack my [insert name of thing here]. I can’t find it.” Let’s just say if finding things post-move was a varsity sport, I would have lettered in it by now. 
As a founder of a tech company dedicated to ‘stuff’ you’d think I’d have it figured out by now. I don’t. Each move for me is an opportunity to assess what worked and what didn’t, and to reassess what we have and why we have it. I still have my minimalist tendencies although I’ve swapped my maximalist mother for a super maximalist (and very sweet and sentimental) spouse. 
So, what’s a girl to do? I’ve pulled together some tips based on what I wish I had known, and what I had wished I had done the first, second, and yes, third go-around. 

      1. Hire a move manager. If you’re anything like me—trying to juggle work, kids, and aging in-laws—a move manager is key. You don’t need to be downsizing to work with your local NASMM partner. Contemplating a move? Call them, you won’t regret it. It takes the pressure off you and gives you a trusted, vetted, and expert resource to help you pre-, during, and post-move. 
      2. Artifct fragile, valuable, or especially sentimental items before you pack. You never know what will happen during the move. Best to have the memory, photos, and details saved. In our case, moving an overly excited golden retriever can do as much if not more damage to cherished belongings than a dropped box in transit. And, if something happens to one of your valuable items, you can share the Artifct with your insurance agent to expedite the claims process!  
      3. Artifct all other special items as you unpack. If you physically must unpack and put away every last item, Artifct the ones that mean something to you, and don’t forget to use the “In the future” field to note what you want to happen to the item in the future. Not only are you unpacking (yay!) you’re also creating a roadmap for your family of what to do with all your stuff one day down the road. It’s a win-win. (Added bonus: Use the “Location” field to note the item’s new location. It’s been a life saver in our house the past few weeks since our move.) 
      4. As you unpack, set aside items you haven’t used in a year or items you completely forgot you own. Hold off putting them away until you ask yourself, "Do I really need this? Do I want this?" If you are limited in space and holding on to an item for purely sentimental reasons, consider Artifcting it and then donating or re-homing it. Moving can be a great time to embrace the art of Swedish Death Cleaning
      5. Got children? You probably have their stuff too. Get them involved early and often. Giving them something to do helps you and them! You can check out our Pint-Sized Perspectives on Moving for more tips on moving with children. As for our older children, if you’re reading this, your stuff awaits you. You know what will happen to it if it remains unused or unclaimed for more than a year. Chop, chop! 
      6. Worried about critical documents and sensitive ‘stuff,’ such as passports, tax returns, and the like? Skip the boxes and carry them with you.
      7. About those boxes. Serial mover? Think twice before trying to reuse old boxes, the integrity of which may have been weakened during the last move. Reusing boxes may also be prohibited by movers and insurance agents. Better to be safe than sorry and either use re-usable plastic bins (like we did for the last three moves!) or invest in new boxes to ensure your ‘stuff’ doesn’t get damaged in transit. 
      8. Don’t forget to mark and position the boxes or bins that you need for immediate use in your new home. Nothing is worse than not being able to make a bed or take a shower after a long day of moving. Our daughter should know—she ended up in a sleeping bag for a day or two on move number two until we could locate her bedding.  
      9. And just for laughs, don’t forget to turn off or redirect your auto-shipments. No sooner had we moved out of our last place than a 30 lb. bag of probiotic dog food arrived. I hope the new occupants saw the humor in that! We did; our golden retriever, not so much.  

@Sasso is holding out hope for that missing bag of dog food. 

Have your own tried and true tips for moving? We’d love to hear from you! You can reach us at 


© 2023 Artifcts, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Read more
Take Another Look at Cemeteries and the Stories Untold They Hold

Reading time: 5 minutes 

What’s with all the interest in cemeteries? Is cemetery tourism really a thing? Isn’t it bad mojo to tromp around where you don’t belong? And why are cemeteries so interesting as to inspire memes about hanging out with dead people and bumper stickers like, “I brake for graveyards?” Genealogists must have seriously healthy senses of humor about their research sources and habits. 

Not being a genealogist or historian, I’ve never quite understood the passion some people have for taking road trips to cemeteries where family are buried, never mind stopping at random ones you may come across.

I can think of three excuses, aka reasons, most of us visit cemeteries: a funeral ceremony, a history lesson, and morbid curiosity. 

A Place of Ceremony and Reflection 

My grandmother died when I was four. My memory of the day is hazy. I remember better the feeling of watching her casket exit the church and thinking how sad it was I wouldn’t see her again. Many people visit cemeteries to remember their loved ones and to take the space they need for conversation, prayer, and thought, honoring those whom they’ve lost.

The power of reflection can make folks do funny things, too. My mother once told me about visiting her parents’ gravesite with one of her siblings. Her normally rather stoic sibling proceeded to lie on the ground next to their parents and ask, “How do I look?” How can you not laugh, even if in a cemetery, about that?

What's the difference between cemetery and graveyard

A Place of History and Community 

I remember much better the solemn awe of walking on a guided tour through Arlington National Cemetery when I visited Washington D.C. on a school field trip. The sheer scale of it and all that it implied registered even with my 14-year-old self. I took a few pictures, now scratchy because the negatives sat for decades in bins. Take my advice: Digitize sooner than later, but first read about my experience!

On that visit, there was something unique that I captured – the tiny green temporary placard that marked the grave of Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis. She had passed away only weeks before our trip, and her resting place beside President John F. Kennedy was a stop along our tour.

Final resting place of JFK and temporary grave marker and resting place of Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis

Clearly should have gotten a closer shot. But the shadows tell you many people were crowding in for a pic.

Simple Curiosity 

I visited a local graveyard once in high school: St. Patrick’s Church cemetery in Askeaton, Wisconsin. We were curious which were the oldest of the crumbling tombstones. Obviously, there was no choice but for the oldest to date to the 1850s when the church was founded by Irish immigrants, but we knew nothing of that history. We were teenagers!

Nowadays, a variety of genealogical, historical, and lineage societies, among others, help preserve and document cemeteries. Websites even exist specifically for collective recording of grave markers for others to use to unlock family mysteries and reconstruct community histories. (More on that below!)

Curious, even a little, about visiting a cemetery or graveyard? Wondering what use a graveyard visit may be to you? Read on!

Unlocking Family Mysteries and Continuing Family Storylines at Cemeteries 

For the curious, grave markers provide an abundance of opportunity to play detective. Whether measured in days or decades, that dash between birth year and death year represents a life lived.

The grave markers themselves convey a lot about a person:

      • Where is the marker – What city? A public cemetery? A churchyard? What faith and denomination? Where within the space, relegated to a dark corner or a prime position? 
      • What type of marker is it – The material, style, and size can provide clues about wealth and status and also culture. 
      • What is on the marker – name, date of birth, professional titles, next of kin, cause of death … so much potential. And don't forget to look on the back if it's double sided! Sometimes you’ll find adornments, such as pictures and symbols to puzzle out, too. Our friends over at Legacy Tree Genealogists recently published an article about tombstone symbols. Check it out >
      • Who is nearby – It may be that you discover relatives nearby that you had not yet discovered or are shocked are directly next to the person whose marker you’re interested in.  

One Arti Community member shared a fabulous historical tale with us about the hero who she found buried next to her grandfather. Click the image to listen in! 

Click to listen

Planning a Visit to a Cemetery

Cemetery tourism like my trip to Arlington National Cemetery aside, if you’re planning a personal visit, we’ve collected tips to make your visit more productive and pleasant.

“Google” first. 

All we mean is do your online research first so you can validate as much information as possible about the site and avoid wasting time on your journey or the day you visit. Popular starting points are BillionGraves (find in AppStore and Google Play), Find a Grave, which also offers a cemetery search (find in AppStore), and Cemetary Census, covering a handful of states.

Reach out to local genealogy and historical societies as well as public libraries, too. You’ll meet hobbyists and professionals alike who delight in helping break through family mysteries and brick walls. 

Call ahead. 

Please, call! You need to confirm the public access hours, details about any temporary or permanent off-limits areas, whether they permit rubbings, and if they have historical records on site you can browse, too. (Bring gloves for safe handling!) While you are at it, ask if they offer maps and guided tours. Some even have mobile apps. 

Bring a small kit. 

A soft paintbrush to gently brush dirt off a marker, a grass clipper to reveal hidden areas, and a blanket or pad to crouch down onto for more comfortable access should suffice. Plus rubbing supplies, if permitted.

Think about the time of day. 

Be mindful of lighting during the season and time of day you plan to visit. Age and material can make it challenging to read, never mind photograph, a marker even if you plan to use photo editing software later. An umbrella can help with glares, and of course protect you and your work from the elements. 

Be careful what you ask for. 

We all know history can be ugly. And if it’s family history you’re tracking down, deeply personal, too. Do you really want the answers? Are you prepared to learn Great Grandma did not get buried next to Great Grandpa, but someone else lies between them? What about discovering a child no one ever mentioned? A false or conflicting date of birth or death? And do others in your family want to know what you find? Tread carefully.


© 2023 Artifcts, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Read more
What’s In a (Brand) Name?

I went from a “company” everyone knew by its initials alone, “CIA,” to a made-up composite word people loved to pronounce with a French twist, “Knoema,” to one that is spelled informally without the second a, “Artifcts.”

You may wonder, perhaps with a hint of exasperation, why, oh, why do companies deliberately misspell their names?

Trends in naming come and go. For a while you saw 'x' replacing letters, like Spanx. You’ve also seen the small first letter theme, like eBay or iTunes, matching the brand name with its means of distribution, as in e-electronic or i-Internet 

You likely know many companies that have opted, like Artifcts, to exclude or replace vowels, e.g., Flickr, Lyft, Tumblr, Sweepr, and Swype. Even conferences have gotten in on the game; THRIV and HLTH come to mind.

We asked Maureen Longoria, Co-founder and CEO of LivNow Relocation, another startup from the AARP AgeTech Collaborative, about her brand’s missing vowel. “That’s kind of a funny story. We started out as Live Now Relocation. We soon realized people were calling us ‘LIVE’ like ‘a live concert’ rather than ‘LIVE’ like ‘I’m living my best life'. We dropped the ‘e’ and combined the words to become LivNow, because we want to help people live their best lives by helping them get to a senior living community.” 

There are a myriad of other reasons for unconventional spellings, too, including: 

      • Appeal and intrigue to the curious, playful, imaginative, and young/young-at-heart 
      • Securing and enforcing a trademark 
      • Reinforcing the brand, and this is where Artifcts especially shines. 

The Missing ‘A’ of Artifcts 

Choosing the name Artifcts was an intentional element of our strategy back in the winter of 2020/2021 to reinforce our brand feel and purpose, serving as the lighthouse for all we do: artifacts (aka ‘stuff’). 

We like to say we are redefining 'artifacts' one painting, monkey in a barrel, and whiskey glass at a time. Artifcts you create do not need to be valuable, historically relevant, part of a collection, or family heirlooms. An Artifct is anything that has meaning to you

Artifcts also rolls off the tongue when verb-ified, helping us to emphasize this is not just a product, it’s a way of life. We are Artifcting daily. It’s in our hearts, homes, and habits. Artifcts make our lives richer, more connected-more meaningful, and set ourselves up for less-burdened futures. 

Unique Brand Names Can Also Be Uniquely Problematic 

We went in eyes wide open to the challenges our brand name would create, although we admittedly thought we could tackle them a bit faster than has proven viable. Chief among those is the disregard of Google for startups and anything outside the norm, including brand names.

Simply stated, Google hates us.

Google insists on autocorrecting the spelling of our name. And this need not be the case! Crunchbase plays nicely; you can easily look us up there. Someday, when everyone knows and loves us already, Google will rethink its anti-startup ways.

Until then we have no choice but to bid on Google Ad Words for our own trademarked brand name or rely on people clicking, “Search instead for Artifcts.” I do this anyway, every day, all day for my searches for other companies, people, and more, so it’s second nature to me. But not all people are so vigilant. Why can’t Google learn faster?!

Google autocorrects Artifcts to Artifacts

We humans naturally, mentally autocorrect.

Without a second thought, our brains fill in the rejected 'a.' Thinking 'Artifacts' still grounds you to our core concept of ‘stuff,’ but it can also mean that you suddenly find yourself thinking, “Wait, what letter was missing?”

We know the feeling.

And we’re leaning in to celebrate our rejected ‘a’ and help anyone who maybe can’t remember. Enjoy this playful surprise from all of us at Artifcts, A-r-t-i-f-c-t-s. 

                    Artifacts becomes Artifcts with animation to pop out the extra a


© 2023 Artifcts, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Read more
It Was Greek to Us, but Not to @Greek Ancestry! 

Let's face it, when it comes to preserving family heritage on a daily basis, you have advantages if: 

      • You have family you still speak with in your “home” country 
      • You are living among people from your native culture in your new country 
      • Someone, anyone, was the family keeper and held onto photos, videos, and heirlooms. 

Likewise, closely related is preserving your family genealogy. Here, too, certain advantages exist, such as if:

      • You have a genealogist in your family, amateur or professional
      • You have retained the ability to speak and read your familial language even if you have emigrated 
      • You are from a country that has maintained the same political national boundaries for generations. 

As we admired the work and beauty of the Instagram feed at @Greek_Ancestry, we wondered what it’s like for people from a country like Greece, now living far from home, and trying to preserve bits of family history, heritage, and genealogy.

So, we asked!

Enjoy our discoveries in this fun cross-over event with Greek Ancestry and Artifcts advisor Georgia Mavrookas.  

Discovery 1. Family heritage is easier to carry forward when you make it a part of daily life. 

Saving your pieces of cultural heritage only for special occasions, or relying only on certain family storytellers, creates a lot of risk of those memories and moments slipping by.

Greek chocolates in green foil inside a crystal bowl

Chocolates, anyone? Keep Grandma's treats on hand every day! It's Artifcted >

Discovery 2. Political boundaries add wrinkles to research.

The area of Macedonia where Georgia’s family is from only became part of Greece in the 1910s and therefore fewer records are available and accessible for a genealogical deep dive. So noted! When seeking some early 'wins,' you might delay that research thread for another day.

We shifted gears and decided to check out Georgia’s husband’s side of the family instead.

Discovery 3. Original handwriting is fascinating.

It's more fun (and engaging) to look at cool original documents than typed up notes. And while we appreciate the advantages of creating altered images to help better see and/or translate faded script, never lose your original image. The coloration and distress you can observe in the script and the paper provide visual clues to our brain as to the age and conditions (humidity etc.) of the document that add to the mystique of it all. It also made us wonder how it is that penmanship has evolved so much over time. Really beautiful.

Original handwritten Greek birth and baptismal record

Original documents provide so much context beyond a single point of data. Check out the Artifct >

Discovery 4. Never hurts to have professional archivists & genealogists on speed dial.

If not for Greek Ancestry’s own archival collection and the Archives of the Holy Metropolis of Monemvasia & Sparta, whose records Gregory Kontos and his colleague Carol Kostakos Petranek of Greek Ancestry have digitized, we could not have traveled back to the late 1800s and early 1900s for original documentation with the relative ease and speed that we did. Instead, it would have been a costly endeavor to locate, access, and translate the records. And such diversity of records! This small research task benefited from Greek Ancestry’s collection of:

      • Birth & baptismal records 
      • Marriage records 
      • Male register records 
      • Voter lists 

Now what?

Maybe you hail from Ireland, Paraguay, Croatia, or the Philippines. The point here is, whether you have a single burning question about one part of your family tree or history or you want to uncover everything there is:

      1. Start on your own home front (try our Genealogy Gems checklist).
      2. Then explore any family tree(s) already created online (but watch out for errors and assumptions).
      3. Seek out professionals to help you along the way. They can bring so much history and experience to bear to guide you toward the right resources, even the right questions, to bring your family history to life!
      4. We'll see you back here along the way as you Artifct your discoveries so it can all live on with all the family lore and fun for generations to come!

We are so thankful to Gregory Kontos and his colleagues at @Greek_Ancestry for diving into Greek family history with Artifcts. We hope you all enjoyed and gained some inspiration for your own #FamilyHeritage research and conversations!


© 2023 Artifcts, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Read more
I'm the Family Keeper! What Do I Do With it All?

Reading time: 3 minutes

In a humorous turning of the tables, after our story earlier this month, “What is a Family Keeper, and Why Should I Care?” we heard from a lot of family keepers who said, “So what do you recommend I do?”  We know how you're feeling. You don't want the memories and history lost; you don't want the people behind it all lost.

The answer is not to throw it all away because you don’t know what to do with it. Instead opt for the good – better – best solutions that make sense for your life, your family, and your collective goals. There's simply no one or right way.

We suggest starting by thinking through these four questions. 

    1. Do you want it? Any of it? 
    2. Do you know if anyone else in the family wants any of it? Have you actually asked? And, if so, and any of it is of historical value to you or your family, or perhaps has an amazing story, do they know that? It could change their feelings about the items. Check out “Storytellers, Beware!
    3. Do you know if any of it has financial value? You can always choose "What's it worth?" for special items you've Artifcted and find out! And, if so, do you have immediate or pressing needs to sell it and invest the cash in other ways in your life? Do you know the provenance of the items and do you have that documented? Get tips from a master, Lark Mason, of Antiques Roadshow.
    4. Do you have an immediate need to get rid of some or all of it? Or are you more interested in slowly downsizing the collection and re-homing or selling pieces of it? Factor in costs to store it and the stress of more clutter than you (or those who you live with) want to put up with! 

Good – Better – Best 

Sometimes we’re up against the wall and we simply do the best we can. Other times, time is on our side, maybe our personal interests/hobbies, too, and we can take the time to give more care not just to the ‘stuff,’ but to the people who it once belonged to and the people of today and the future who may value it as well. Here’s our good-better-best solutions for family keepers: 


If you truly must get rid of it, take photos and share them, pronto! Then you have never lost anything completely. You’ll at least give your family and future generations a clue about the people of their own past. 

Did you know photos can be as if not more difficult than documents to track down for your family 


Take the photos, but then get on a group call with your extended family (or invite them over if local), tell them about what you have, what your intentions are to keep, sell, donate, or rehome. Have a real conversation. Share stories. Learn what interest, if any, your family has for specific items.  

Think broadly about “family.” You know the people who were “like a second mother” or the neighbor who was practically family? Don’t forget them in the sharing. 


Artifct collections of items – e.g. all the silver, a stack of family bibles, a collection of statues, precious textiles … – and individual items for which you know ANY supporting details or stories or you simply love for any reason at all. If you don’t, all those photos you took and what you do know could get lost forever and will not help anyone to make good decisions about what’s next for it all. 

    • What person and/or side of the family did it come from? 
    • How did you come to have it? 
    • What is it? Sometimes it’s not obvious!
    • Any stories or related photos, documents, or video you have for it. 
    • Then, create an invite-only circle on Artifcts and invite all of your family members to join (for free!). Share your Artifcts with the circle so they can once again see all the family heirlooms. Invite them to share with the circle any they may have, too. Perhaps you’ll discover answers to each other’s family history puzzles or matches/pieces of a collection. You never know.

If you have additional good-better-approaches to share, reach out to us at, and we'll help spread the word. You can also follow us on social media and join the conversation there, too!

Happy Artifcting!


© 2023 Artifcts, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Read more
How Well-Managed Is Your Family History Estate? 

We’ve all seen recent media articles of Baby Boomers confronting how their possessions should be handled after they’ve died. While the topics of “Swedish death cleaning” and “tidying up” are at the forefront, few articles discuss how “family history” should be passed on, too, so that it contributes to a family’s legacy. 

Even if you haven’t self-published a family history book, researched your roots for years, or even built a family tree, you’ve likely been a “steward” for at least some stories, heirlooms, and “stuff.” 

Family Keeper vs. Family Steward 

There is a big difference between a “keeper” of a family’s history and a “steward” of items which make up that history. Different mindsets seem to govern how each person approaches their possessions.  

A keeper often has a protective sense of ownership of items and sometimes becomes defensive when asked to share them. You may have encountered an aunt or an uncle who is sitting on family photo albums, boxes of heirlooms, etc. They tend to treat these items as “holy relics” and have a wealth of stories to go along with each item. And when you ask them how they plan to pass those items on to someone else in the family, often they evade the topic or are at a loss for words (and plans). 

A steward takes a very different approach, like someone tending a garden. Not only have they taken the time to preserve photos and heirlooms against damage and loss, but they’ve also documented the stories that bring those items to life in fixed form, not just in your memory. And after years of cultivating that family history “garden,” they are willing to pass the items to a younger generation of stewards who can continue to preserve the family’s legacy. 

Cultivating Your Family History Garden 

Going from keeper to steward can be challenging. Here are some tips and tricks on making that journey:

  • Take a deep breath. If you are in possession of years of photos and other family items, start with small mini-projects to avoid becoming overwhelmed. This could mean simply sorting photos from slides and negatives. The next project would then be to decide what gets scanned and how to scan them. Then move on to the next project, and the next project, and so on. 
  • Create a stewardship plan. If you find yourself jumping from project to project without making any progress, create a simple plan. Name the task, write a short description, enter a start date and desired end date. Add a notes section so that if you do jump to a new project without finishing the current one, you note where you left off. 

Use Artifcts timeline time period notes to support research planning

  • Set priorities. Some stewards will “rank” their projects using a “1, 2, 3” method. A 1 signifies high priority projects such as interviewing the oldest relatives in the family. Use a 2 for medium priority projects such as documenting family stories and getting them in a fixed format. And finally, 3 is for low priority projects such as file renaming of scanned photos. 

About those oldest relatives, legendary television news anchor Bob Jordan agrees. Watch this snippet. The complete discussion from Evenings with Artifcts with Bob is available here.
  • Leverage technology. Today many tools are available to assist with completing those family history projects, and it can be difficult to determine which tools are the best. Look for tools that help you document family stories and heirlooms—like Artifcts—and allow you to share that process and results with other family members.  

Artifcts can help you build a virtual “family history library” that is easy to pass on to others in the family. Consider using the QR code available for each Artifct you create and place it on or near an heirloom. The next time family members visit, sit back, and wait for the younger ones to scan the code with their mobile device to learn more about that heirloom. I also recommend printing the QR code for your entire Artifcts collection and including it with your important documents, like your will, deeds, and insurance policies. 

Tip from Artifcts - Use the In the future field for decisions on disposition of assets


We all want to be good caretakers of our family history, but the mere idea of passing away can cause the work of stewardship to be delayed. Remember, you don’t have to go it alone. There are so many products, tools, and services that can help you go from keeper to steward.  

And there’s no reason why you can’t involve the younger generation NOW rather than waiting until it is too late. Create a series of family projects using Artifcts to document family heirlooms and to share their stories so those precious items finally have a voice and can be heard. 


If family history and genealogy are on your mind, we have additional ARTIcles by Artifcts that might interest you!


© 2023 Artifcts, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Read more
Everything You Wanted to Know About Appraisals, But Were Afraid to Ask

Reading time: 12 minutes

In honor of National Estate Planning Week, we thought we’d take a deep dive into the world of appraisals with an Ask Me Anything with our dear friend, colleague, and Ally of Stuff, Sarah Reeder, Founder of Artifactual History Appraisal.

In addition to being an expert on ‘stuff,’ and specifically the value of ‘stuff,’ Sarah is also author of the book  Ray Eames in 1930s New York, co-editor of Worthwhile Magazine™ and co-creator of The Art Elevator Collector’s Club. Read on to learn more about what she does as an appraiser, when to contact an appraiser, and even those questions we all want to ask (but may be afraid to!) such as what the difference between an appraisal and a valuation is.

For our members who are new to the appraisal process, how would you sum up what you do?

Reeder: I like to think of what I do as being part lawyer, part accountant, and sometimes even part therapist! It might surprise some people, but appraisals are nothing like what you see on TV. My work entails numerous hours of research, the preparation of legal documents, and meeting meticulous professional requirements for appraising items to establish a value in a specific level of the market on a specific day (called the effective date) for a specific intended use. (We’ll come back to that later!) 

Appraisals are nothing like what you see on TV...

The work appraisers do is a very specialized type of professional service akin to an attorney or an accountant that requires a lot of time and focused research, so the very quick and informal “off-the-cuff” depictions of appraising we all see on television have edited out the lengthy preparation (because it would be pretty boring to watch!) that goes into those short segments we see. But I wish it was more widely known that there is so much more work that goes into appraising than the 2-minute clips we see onscreen.

The therapist part sometimes comes into play because as you know so well here at Artifcts, objects can hold powerful memories and inspire strong emotions, totally independent from what their monetary value might be. Sometimes it’s a delicate conversation when the “heart value” and financial value are not aligned, and that is where I rely on market data and research to help individuals understand the current market conditions and corresponding value of the item. I always emphasize that market conditions should not diminish the positive sentimental associations they have with an item—they just happen to be the lens that appraisers must use in our professional work.

So, getting down to the nitty gritty, can you walk us through a typical day?

Reeder: There is no one typical day. That is one of the many things I love about being an appraiser, you never know what you’ll be working on next! There are two types of appraisals I spend most of my time on, insurance appraisals, and estate appraisals. And yes, they are different!

When I am working on an insurance appraisal, I am creating a legal document that will protect you and your items in the event of damage or loss. These appraisals are for the retail replacement value of the object and in doing so, pins that object and that value in time. That specific moment in time is called the effective date of the appraisal, and all appraisals have effective dates.

The effective date of appraisal is so important in all appraisal report intended uses, because it provides critical context for the numerical appraised value. The markets for art and antiques are always changing, much like the stock market we are more commonly familiar with, so the appraised values need to be contextualized to a specific day, because on the day before or the day after market conditions may have been different. For insurance appraisal reports, the effective date is typically the day I inspect the items in person as it establishes the condition I witnessed on that day.

The markets for art and antiques are always changing, much like the stock market...

When working on these types of appraisals, I spend a lot of time researching the object, documenting it with photos and a detailed description, cataloging it with a standardized format that will allow future users of the appraisal report to know the characteristics of the appraised item, researching the specific level of the market for similar items for the appraisal report’s intended use, and then developing an appraised value based on all the above.

In the case of insurance appraisals, the appraised value is generally the replacement value of the object (i.e. what would it cost to acquire the same exact or very similar object in a short period of time from a retail dealer). For example, if I am appraising a painting by a particular artist for insurance purposes, I’m going to identify which galleries represent that artist or sell paintings by that artist, and then compare their available inventory and pricing (which often is not publicly available and requires outreach to the galleries) to the appraised painting in terms of subject, size, condition, era of the artist’s career, and other factors.

Based on the current retail data I can obtain, I then make adjustments up or down if needed relative to the appraised painting, and document all relevant research for my appraisal client workfile, which I am legally required to keep for a minimum of 5 years. The final number after the specific adjustments from the comparable records accounting for differences from the appraised item is the appraised retail replacement value. So it’s all a lot more complicated and research-intensive than what the public typically sees in popular depictions of appraisers on television.

Insurance appraisals are very different from estate appraisals. Estate appraisals are not used for insurance coverage.  Estate appraisals are prepared at fair market value and are required in some situations to be filed with the federal government or relevant state and local governments for estate tax filing. The legal professional handling an estate is the one who determines whether this is required in specific estate situations.

While insurance appraisals are typically prepared at retail replacement value, estate appraisals are prepared at fair market value, which is often quite a bit lower. The United States government defines fair market value as

"The price at which the property would change hands between a willing buyer and a willing seller, neither being under any compulsion to buy or to sell and both having reasonable knowledge of relevant facts." According to Technical Advisory Memorandum 9235005 [May 27, 1992], fair market value should include the buyer's premium. [Source: Treasury Regulations Section 20.2031-1 (b).]

For estate appraisal reports, the effective date is typically at the time of the death of the deceased. This is very different than with insurance appraisals as it could take an executor months and months to close out an estate and yet the value is still pegged to the date of death. There is something called the “alternate effective date” which is 6 months after the date of death, which the estate can elect to use if the market has changed significantly in that time period. I always like to confirm which effective date the estate is using as this is a critical factor in guiding my valuation research.

Can you tell us a bit about the tools of your trade? What do you take with you when you visit someone’s home to start an appraisal?

Reeder: I always like to take a good camera with me for capturing documentary photos, a tape measure so I can obtain the dimensions of artworks and the other items I am appraising, a clipboard and paper so I can take notes on-site that will later be expanded with research back in my office, a blacklight for examining artwork for inpainting and other restorations, a jeweler’s loupe for studying silver marks and other small details, and a flashlight for studying artist signatures and providing additional ambient lighting for my photographs in dark locations. I carry multiple flashlights and measuring tapes with me so if one breaks while I am on-site, I have a backup available to be able to continue working.

I have to make sure I capture all the precise details that make your object unique. If it is artwork, is there an artist signature? Any blemishes or marks? Water or sun damage? All of these things are important to ascertain the value of an object, and I need to be able to document them while onsite.


Worn leather bag used for appraisalsSarah's trusty go-everywhere appraisal bag full of her tools of the trade. 

Some people, and I admit, I was one of them at the beginning, may not know the difference between valuation services and an appraisal. Could you help explain what makes the two different?

Reeder: Sure! The Uniform Standards of Professional Appraisal Practice (USPAP) define valuation services as:

“A service pertaining to an aspect of property value, regardless of the type of service and whether it is performed by appraisers or by others.”

An appraisal is defined by USPAP as:

"(noun) the act or process of developing an opinion of value; an opinion of value. 
(adjective) of or pertaining to appraising and related functions such as appraisal practice or appraisal services.
Comment: An appraisal is numerically expressed as a specific amount, as a range of numbers, or as a relationship (e.g.,
not more than, not less than) to a previous value opinion or numerical benchmark (e.g., assessed value, collateral value).” 

In terms of the general popular context of these two words outside of their specific USPAP definitions, a valuation is typically more closely associated with ballpark estimates and not with a legal document. Think of it as something that will get you basic guidance, such as getting an approximate sense if an inherited collection is simply sentimental and has no monetary value, or conversely, if it might have significant monetary value.

A valuation is typically more closely associated with ballpark estimates ...

Appraisals are legal documents.  A verbal ballpark numerical range cannot be used in court to settle an estate, with the IRS to document tangible assets for tax purposes, or with an insurer to document items for an insurance policy. USPAP-compliant written appraisal reports are needed for those intended uses.

Are there any red flags our members should watch out for when looking to hire an appraiser?

Reeder: One of my personal red flags is if the appraiser essentially says, “I will tell you how much it is worth and then purchase it from you.” There is a major conflict of interest there, and their interest may not be in your best interest.

Another major red flag is if an appraiser is not USPAP-compliant. USPAP is a very important professional and ethical standard regulating appraisers to help protect users of appraisal services.

It’s always best to look for an independent appraiser who is USPAP-compliant, and ideally is also a member of one of the professional associations for appraisers such as the Appraisers Association of America (AAA), the International Society of Appraisers (ISA), or the American Society of Appraisers (ASA). I am a Certified Member of the Appraisers Association of America and a Certified Member of the International Society of Appraisers.

You also want to make sure that any appraiser you hire has expertise in YOUR object(s). A jewelry appraiser may be great for your jewelry collection, but not your collection of mid-century modern furniture and vice versa. In USPAP, this is called the “Competency Rule”—basically, is this appraiser competent to appraise your items? If they aren’t, they shouldn’t do it.

You also want to make sure that any appraiser you hire has expertise in YOUR object(s)...

When should people hire an appraiser? Are there any life transitions that may necessitate an appraiser?

Reeder: Life transitions are a great time to take stock of what you have and what’s it worth. Some common life transitions where it can be useful to engage an appraiser are:

  • If you have inherited potentially valuable items such as artwork. An appraiser can provide expert guidance on their value and prepare an insurance appraisal report so they can be scheduled and protected with your insurance company.
  • If you plan on moving it can be very helpful to have valuable items appraised for insurance purposes in advance or to update an existing appraisal to make sure the insurance coverage is current.
  • For estate filing purposes when someone has passed. The estate’s attorney will direct whether an estate appraisal is needed.
  • For proactive estate planning purposes—if you have large collections, it can be helpful to get a sense of their value and how they might be structured in your estate plan for maximum tax efficiency for your heirs (again, your attorney will be a very helpful resource in this process).
  • Sometimes divorces are another life transition that may require an appraiser for the equitable distribution process. 

And finally, you’ve experienced firsthand the joy (and usefulness!) of Artifcting. Any advice for our members or thoughts on how Artifcting can aid the appraisal process?

Reeder: Yes! Artifct your ‘stuff.’ Don’t wait! The details, photos, even video can help an appraiser get to work immediately determining an appraisal scope of work and sometimes even using the Artifcts as a resource to appraise items that may now be damaged or lost. It can save a lot of time and back and forth emails if you Artifct and share your Artifcts with your appraiser. Artifcts really is perfect for an appraiser’s workflow!


Sarah Reeder is a Certified Member of the Appraisers Association of America, a Certified Member of the International Society of Appraisers with the Private Client Services designation, and a graduate of New York University's Program in Appraisal Studies in Fine & Decorative Arts.

© 2023 Artifcts, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Read more
Articles Themes
Contact the Editor
Have feedback? Artifacts to feature? We’d love to hear from you.
Your privacy

This website uses only essential cookies to provide reliable and secure services, streamline your experience, allow you to share content from this website on social media, and to analyze how our Site is used. Learn more about these cookies and cookie settings.

Accept & Continue
Oops! This Web Browser Version is Unsupported

You received this warning because you are using an unsupported browser. Some features of Artifcts will not be available or will be displayed improperly until you update to the latest version or change browsers.

Image for unsupported banner Oops! This Web Browser is Unsupported

You received this warning because you are using an unsupported browser. Some features of Artifcts will not be available or will be displayed improperly until you update to the latest version or change browsers.

Unsupported banner close icon Close