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Monday, July 28, 2008

Children's Crafts for Lughnasadh -- Corn Dolly

Monday, July 28, 2008
One of the biggest traditions for this Sabbat is the making of the Corn Dolly out of the first grain harvested. I recommend making a Corn Dolly now and using it in ritual and on the family altar until this time next year.
Here are some instuctions courtesy of Pagan Hearth Recipes.

The best part of the stem is the top length from the ear (the seed head) down to where the last leaf leaves the stem. Leaving the ear intact, strip off the dead leaves and sort the stems according to size: thick, medium, and fine.
Dry straw must be soaked flat in cold water for about 15 minutes and then stood upright to drain before plaiting.
The Five-Straw Plait is the easiest to work with for a beginner:

1.) Tie 5 straws together close to the ears.

2-5.) Each time the straw being folded passes over two corners, it is then left and the one at the last corner is picked up and used in its place until the round is completed.

The attractive spiral pattern grows as round succeeds round.

6.) When completed, the ends are tied to the starting point below the ears, making a decorative circle.

To feed in new straws, cut the old straw off after it has passed the second straw. The thin end of the new straw is inserted in the hole, making sure of a firm fit which is hidden under the fold of the straw of the next round.

Simple corn dollies can also be made with the standard three-straw plait.

More complex corn dollies involve multiple straws, intricate braids, and sometimes the creation of a straw core shape around which the outer straw is plaited.

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