Beltane is coming! Beltane is coming!
Beltane (Belt-ane) is on May 1. It's one of the eight major festivals of the wheel of the year. It is a time for celebrating the flowers, and the baby animals, and our own bodies for enabling us to move through the world and experience it with our senses. And it's a fertility festival-- the story goes that in the way back when, young women would go and make up comfy little beds in the fields while young men did manly things like chop down trees and jump over bonfires. Then the young men would seek out their loves in the fields, where they would spend the night together "ensuring the fertility of the harvest through acts of sympathetic magic". Which is a fancy way of saying they spent the night fornicating in the grass.
But I have children who aren't quite ready for THAT story just yet, so around here we celebrate having healthy bodies and the return of the flowers.
My bee's balm is about 4 weeks early this year--so we have REAL flowers for Beltane.
But usually everything is just starting to bud, so we have to make our own.
Assemble your supplies! It's time to get crafty!
Watercolor paper of any weight.
Two jars of water (one to rinse out your brush & one to dip for clean water)
A palette (I use a styrofoam tray that came under some veggies)
A round-tipped brush (I used a #8)
Green embroidery floss
Brilliant Red, Yellow, Viridian Green, Pthalo Blue, Violet.
Cover your paper with paint. You can blend it (upper left corner), you can overlap it (red and violet), just cover the whole page & let it dry.
Once dry, flip it over and free-hand some flower shapes. Or get different sized round containers & trace. Or use a flower-shaped paper punch.
Cut out your flower shapes (save your scraps!)
Get out your Elmer's glue, and glue smaller flowers onto larger flowers. If you used a flower punch, use a regular hole punch to punch out circles and glue those in the middle of your flowers. I recommend using contrasting colors.
Once your glue has dried, punch a hole in the top of your flowers. Tie embroidery floss through the holes. I used four different lengths of floss and tied 4-5 flowers on each.
Then I hung them all together on one hook.
You could safety-pin them to curtain tie-backs.
You could hang them in the windows.
You could string them across your mantel.
You could use the flowers as tags on your Mother's Day gifts.
You could decorate your bus stop.