Have Yourself A Polymer Clay Halloween

by Leila Bidler

Interesting facts about Halloween Traditions and Superstitions:

As we all probably know Halloween’s origins date back to the ancient Celtic festival of Samhain – November 1 (when the Celts celebrated the new year) is the day that marked the end of summer and the harvest and the beginning of winter, a dark and cold time of the year of course associated also with human death.

On the night before the new year they believed that the boundary between the worlds of the living and the dead became blurred and the ghosts of the dead would return to earth. This might cause trouble and damaging the crops but also help to make predictions about the future.  To celebrate the event Druids would built sacred bonfires and the Celts wore costumes, often consisting of animal heads and skins.

In America the first celebrations included “play parties” and events to celebrate the harvest, where neighbors would share stories of the dead or tell ghost stories.  Even mischief-making happened as the beliefs and customs of different European ethnic groups, as well as those of the Native Americans, mixed.  Over time, a distinctly American version of Halloween would slowly emerge.

The “trick-or-treat” tradition probably dates back to the early “All Souls’ Day” parades in England where poor citizens would beg for food and receive pastries called “soul cakes” in return for their promise to pray for the giving family’s dead relatives. This was actually encouraged also by the church as a way to help replace the ancient practice of leaving food for roaming spirits.

As for the practice of decorating “jack-o’ –lanterns”, the name comes form an Irish folktale about a man named Stingy Jack. In Ireland turnips and potatoes served the purpose while in America pumpkins would be used and soon became an integral part of Halloween festivities.

Who was “Stingy Jack” you might ask? He’s an unsavory figure who would trick the Devil various times (drinking is of course involved as well,--it’s an Irish story….) so when he died the Devil could not claim his soul. Unfortunately for Jack not even God would allow him into heaven for all the tricks he played, so legend has it that poor Jack was sent off into the dark with only a burning coal to light his way and he put it (you might have guessed it) into a carved out turnip while roaming the Earth ever since.

(Source: The History Channel)

We have for you some exquisite Halloween inspired -and- related Polymer Clay artwork, and a great tutorial as well – of course this is THE festivity to use up all that orange colored clay, connect with your “dark creativity” and unleash the creepy artist hidden deep inside.  I highly recommend the use of lots of “glow in the dark” Polymer Clay, but please try to keep those cobwebs out of it...

 

skull

homemade clay skulls tutorial: http://www.365halloween.com/clay-skull-craft

houses

      Spooky Houses Halloween Necklace by Inessa aka SMAfactory:

http://www.facebook.com/SMAfactory

 

ghostbox

P C covered paper mache box by Becky Meverden:

http://theconstantcrafter.blogspot.it/

hauntedhouse

Hounted House miniature/sculpture by Raku Inoue: http://www.rakuinoue.com/

flowerbrooch

Day of the Death Flower Brooch by Marie Segal:

http://www.mariesegal.blogspot.com/

jackolanternspool

Jack-O-Lantern on a Spool by Hublebea

   http://www.humblebea.com/

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