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.
These are our first martenitsas for the season – they were made from fabric. We used all kinds of fabric – and most of them turned out rather well 🙂
Flowers – we cut out two copies of each pattern then machine-stitched them together. We made a hole in one of the layers and filled the shape with cotton wool.
We tied a thick thread across the diameter several times, pulling tight l to make the petals.