Here’s an easy way to make big martenitsas without using an awful lot of yarn 🙂

Wrap thick white and red yarn around small bottles of mineral water that have been pasted with PVA glue. Don’t worry if some of the glue remains visible; it will become transparent when it dries out.

It’s better to wrap a second layer around the bottle. You might want to alternate the colors. We made the flowers from felt ( see instructions)

What is ‘martenitsa’?

In Bulgarian folklore the month of March is often portrayed as a plump, cheerful old lady, “baba Marta”. The 1st day of her reign is celebrated with red and white ornaments in various designs – as bracelets, brooches, pom-poms… 
The origins of this ritual are lost in time, but the meaning is clear – they are luck charms you give away to wish good health (and good looks, too!) Friends, family, even pets and domestic animals get one.They are also a countdown to spring – you wear them every day until you see the first stork, or swallow, or blossoming tree. Then you take themartenitsa off and tie it to a branch.