Thanksgiving - The traditional symbol of this holiday is the cornucopia. I placed one with some silk leaves and autumn fruit and vegetables. The mass of leaves is several autumn swags with some orange organza ribbon. The candle colors are orange, red, and yellow. I just added things that reminds me a the plenitude of the season.
Feast of Saint Valentine/Lent - This pretty much a Hallmark holiday today, but he was a real person. Sort of a messed up story but he was caught marrying Christian couples and aiding any Christians who were being persecuted under Emperor Claudius in Rome and ultimately beheaded, hence the red. One legend says, while jailed, Valentine restored the sight of his jailer's blind daughter. On the eve of his death, he wrote a note to the jailer's daughter, signing it, "From your Valentine."
Palm Sunday/Lent - The traditional colors for this time of year are black for obvious reasons; red for the crucifixion and purple for royalty. This holiday along with the next few are really... ummmm... Catholic-y. The idea is that Jesus was sacrificed and joined his father, the Lord; hence the royalty. Pearls are supposed to represent the tears of Mary. I know it's kind of heavy, but this is why it the most important time of the year for us.
Christmas/Advent... Detail of the tree... I have some handblown glass ornaments, a little homage to my German heritage. I not sure where the tradition is from, but it supposed to be good luck to have a bird on your tree, so I put a bird on it (love Portlandia, Google it). Add some faux sugared fruit and some fancy Christmas balls... BOOM... decorated tree. And I'm just telling you can't get enough pine cones.
Mardi Gras/Lent - The traditional colors for Mardi Gras are Purple, Gold, and Green. Purple is the color of royalty some say for the King of Mardi Gras, some say the color of Justice in memory of the persecuted Arcadians, that eventually became the Cajuns. Gold is the color of Wealth and Prosperity which is keeping with the Carnivale idea. Green is the color of Faith to signify the upcoming Lenten season.
Easter/ Divine Mercy Sunday - One of reason I decorate for this holiday in non-traditional colors is so I can use some awesome vintage glass Christmas balls from my Grandma's tree. I use pastel plaid ribbon wrapped around the white tulle.
Feast of Saint Patrick/Lent - The little gold wicker-looking thing is just an... um... upcycled old Christmas ornament. The other is a DIY... It's shamrock leaves pinned to a styrofoam ball. The shamrock became associated with the holiday because Saint Patrick used it to explain the concept of the Holy Trinity. You can look that up, but just trust me it's super complicated and I feel like visual aid would definitely make it easier to explain.
Feast of Saint Joseph/Lent - The decorations here are staying with red and gold. There are red glass flowers which are Christmas ornaments from my mothers tree and a DIY that I made with my trusty strofoam ball... I used pearl top pins to fasten cherry blossoms to the ball. They would really just look nice sitting a bowl by themselves. Cherry blossoms come into play as they are usually in bloom on the feast day.
Memorial Day - Obvious color theme here, I just worked some American flag bunting around the candles. The vase is full of Flanders poppies. Due to the extent of ground disturbance in warfare during World War I, poppies bloomed in between the trench lines of the Western front. During the 20th century, the wearing of a poppy on Memorial Day became very popular. I added the black ribbon to remind me that today is a day to remember the fallen and why I get to live in the best country in the…
Good Friday/Lent - Part of the traditions associated with this day is that we shroud the crosses in our homes and churches. Also all of the bells will stop ringing in the churches. The bell ringing is not as significant today as it perhaps once was, but imagine being in a time before clocks were widely available and the only thing you had to tell time by stopped working.
Halloween - I put out a couple of novena candles and made some sugar skulls. Sugar skulls are part of the Halloween celebrations for Mexicans Catholics. Generally the skulls will be place on the graves of their loved ones on La Dia de Los Muertos (Day of the Dead) which is also known as All Saints Day and usually runs over into All Souls Day on November 2.
Christmas/New Year... As it turns out January 1st aside from being New Year's, is also the Solemnity of Mary. The colors dedicated to Mary are blue and white. I don't know if some church person back in the day thought that up, or if it is just a coincidence... but it works out really well. I just included some spun glass and more... ummmm... glitteriness.
Mardi Gras/ Lent - Beads draping all over the trees of New Orleans on my way to Ash Wednesday mass at Saint Louis Cathedral is one of my favorite Mardi Gras memories. I have also found an affinity for King cakes; some of the beads on the tree are little plastic babies, they usually baked into the King cakes. The person that finds the baby not only gets some fried and sugar coated cake, but also gets good luck for the year and gets to buy next years cake.
Labor Day - In keeping with the beach theme, I filled a cobalt glass bowl with some white craft sand and seashells. I have been collecting the shells over the years on different vacations. Its cool because every year different shells are on top when I pour the sand and shells in the bowl, and it reminds me of different vacations.... and now I get to use all the random seashells I've collected. I added geraniums and mums as they always make me think of the end of the Summer.