It’s Bank Holiday season, yay! And hot on the heels of Easter and its unusually glorious weather is Beltane.
Also known as May Day, Beltane is a Celtic Fire Festival that falls on 1st May. It heralds the beginning of summer and honours the joining of the Goddess and her God. No wonder then, it’s a popular time for handfastings and weddings. Including ours!
May is definitely one of my favourite months of the year (with October, natch!) But equally exciting is that come Beltane Eve on 30th April, we’ll be halfway to Halloween. I can’t quite believe half a year has passed since our last Halloween Open House! The way the last 6 months have flown by, the next one will be here before we know it.
Some call it
I discovered Walpurgisnacht AKA Hexennacht last year and never having heard of it before, I was surprised to discover this ancient festival is celebrated on Beltane Eve in many countries. As a witches’ night consisting of dancing and a form of trick or treating, it’s also known as the second Halloween. It never occurred to me that the last day of April is exactly 6 months until Halloween, so no wonder we witches feel like celebrating!
Because who doesn’t want Halloween more than once a year?
It shouldn’t come as a huge surprise, really. In the wheel of the year, Beltane stands directly opposite Samhain. So, just as the veil between the worlds of the living and the dead is at its thinnest on 31st October, Beltane brings the mortal world very close to that of the faery Otherworld.
Hands up who fancies laying under a Hawthorn (May Tree) and seeing what gifts the faeries bestow?
One small way in which I’ve marked second Halloween is to take part in a Walpurgis card exchange. Last year, I had lots of fun knocking up a batch of handmade cards and creating a Halloween countdown. This year, I included a deliciously dark gift for my fellow witches.
I am totally in love with these mini mixed media canvases. Each “stunning creation”, in the words of one recipient, comes complete with its own easel and is a “tiny masterpiece” of “ornate texture and meticulous attention to detail”.
I can’t even begin to tell you how much joy this gives me. To receive such feedback warms my heart beyond measure.
As you might expect, with only 186 days until Halloween I’ve already got my craft on and I’m making more Gothic canvases both for my Halloween home and yours. So if you fancy a
Not a fan of black? I reckon they look just as cool in white. What do you think? I must admit, I had a hard job deciding whether to paint this one, but judging by my lovely lady’s feedback, I definitely did the right thing.
One of my Halloween themes this year has a distinctly Vampire feel about it and somewhere along the line, a little religious iconography has crept into my crafting.
Personally, I’d have this beaut on display all year round, how about you?
All that remains is to send many Beltane Blessings your way and to wish you a very Happy Second Halloween. Will you be doing anything to celebrate? There’s a little ritual in the image at the top of this post if you wish to follow along. If you would like a full size version of that, let me know.
A hui hou,