Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Lavender Wands Make Me Happy

OMG!  I cannot believe that it has been since July that I have posted anything on my blog!  Where did the summer go?  I look out today and there is snow on the ground and I wonder where the year went?  It certainly has been another whirlwind of time.  So I have lots of catching up to do!
Beautiful Lavender in Full Bloom
In July, our Indianapolis Herb Society paid a visit to Willowfield Lavender Farm.  And what a glorious visit it was!  They treated us to a nice program about growing lavender and a brief tour of their farm. It's not a large farm, but large enough to grow lots of lovely lavender.
Rows and Rows of Lavender in Bloom.
When the lavender is in full bloom, they offer U-Pick to their customers.  My daughter Grace and I decided to take advantage of it and we each picked a bundle of 100 lavender blooms.
Grace picking lavender.
We enjoyed our visit to the Lavender Farm and very much enjoyed our purchase from the lavender farm!
Grace with our lovely bundles of lavender that we picked.
Once we were home, I decided that Grace and I should try a little crafting with our lavender purchases.  We decided to try our hand at making lavender wands.
Here is the objective of our crafting afternoon.  Take the lavender stems and make them into a lavender wand.
Lavender wands are not hard to make, just a little tedious.  It just takes a good eye and a little patience.  To start your lavender wand, select some nice, long, freshly picked stems of lavender.  Lavender stems will remain pliable for a few days after picking, but once dry, you will not be able to bend them.  You need an uneven number of stems and I believe we used 17 stems of lavender in our wands.  (Note:  you can also use an even number of stems, as long as it comes out with an uneven number when divided by 2.  For example:  18/2=9 or 22/2=11 -- I'll explain why in the next couple of steps.)
Once you have gathered your lavender stems, you will want to tie a piece of ribbon right below the blooms and tie it tight as show in the following picture.
17 stems of lavender cinched tightly with some ribbon.
Once you have tied the ribbon under the blooms, you will bend the long stems down - as shown in the next picture.
Bending down the stems over the blooms.
You essentially want to 'encapsulate' the blooms with the stems.
These stems will cover the blooms with your ribbon woven through them.
Now comes the tedious part - weaving the ribbon over and under the stems.  This will weave it all together and close the blooms inside the wand.  Your ribbon must go over and under each stem and wind down to the end of the blooms.  If you are using an even number of stems, you will weave over and under 2 stems at a time.
Starting the weaving.
Beginning the weaving is the hardest part, I think.  Once you get a few rows done, it gets easier.
Keep weaving the ribbon over and under the stems, spiraling down until you get to the bottom of the blooms (or, rather, the top of the blooms!).  Then you can tie off your ribbon and finish your wand.

Almost finished weaving.  Just a few more rows until I have the blooms all covered.

Lavender will hold its fragrance almost indefinitely.  So these wands will be fragrant for years.  I hope I can do more of these next year! 

This is Grace's finished wand.  She did a great job making it and I think hers turned out even better than mine.
If you are interested in making lavender wands, you can grow your own lavender or visit these two great herb farms:
Willowfield Lavender Farm, 6176 East Smokey View Rd., Mooresville, IN.  You can view their website at   They deal strictly in lavender items - plants, dried lavender, lavender sachets, lotions, teas, etc. -- all lavender.
Also visit Carolee's Herb Farm - 3305 S. 100 W., Hartford City, IN.  You can view her website at  Carolee has quite a large lavender field and hosts Lavender Daze every year the first week in July.  She also has a large variety of herb plants and many herb and garden related items in her gift shop.
I promise that I won't wait so long to post again!!!

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