Tuesday is my birthday (it’s on your calendar, right?)
Tuesday is also Michaelmas which is the feast day on the Christian calendar that pays tribute to St. Michael and all the archangels.
Discovering that I shared my birthday with Michaelmas was one of those things that just made my heart so happy. Up until now, the most exciting celebrity I could claim as a birthday twin was Bryant Gumbel. (Exactly.)
So imagine my #churchnerd delight when I realized that I shared September 29 with Michael the defender, Gabriel the messenger, and Raphael the healer. Mind blown.
When I was writing A Homemade Year, I wanted to throw a party for my own little group of angels whom I wrote about in the Michaelmas chapter. For the menu I drew on inspiration from the European Michaelmas celebrations, a date that traditionally was used as a way to mark the end of the summer harvest. These feasts often included a mixture of dishes that leaned heavily on late summer and early autumn produce, with roasted chicken being the main course. Four our dinner we served Rotiserie Chickens, a fall salad, and my favorite side dish EVER – Farmer’s Market Bread Pudding (recipe here.) I chose the theme of doilies for the table settings and the decor, envisioning the doilies, new and old, as something like angels’ wings, which also inspired my Vintage Hankie and Dollie Bunting.
This year my birthday is on a Tuesday. No grand parties are planned, no big milestones are being reached. This year, 9/29 is just a regular school and work night. But I am thinking that we may just have to eat some chicken and savory bread pudding, and I may just have to string up at least one row of my “angel wings” bunting. To celebrate Michaelmas, the gift of another year, and all the angels in my life. And if by chance there is one small piece of pie with a candle stuck in, I may just wish for another year to live a life inspired by Michael and his friends, to start another year of living than defending the helpless, sharing tidings of great joy, and providing healing however I can.
All photos in this post are by Omnivore Creative and are featured in A Homemade Year
How to make your own Vintage Hankie Bunting
I have a weakness for decorative buntings and banners. I love to string them up everywhere for no particular reason, all year-long. For years I have collected vintage handkerchiefs and doilies, and occasionally I pull them out and find a way to display them for a week or maybe a month, but the majority of the time they have just lived stuffed in drawers, hidden from view. For this party I decided the time had come to use my hankies and doilies to create a party bunting, fluttering with my most favorite hankies.
Quantity of vintage or new doilies and ladies’ handkerchiefs, approximately 24
Sufficient grosgrain ribbon (¾ inches wide) to stretch across your bunting area
Sewing needle and thread
Measure the area you want to hang your buntings on (I made 2, each 8 yards long because I wanted them to make a big impact in the outdoor space. )
Cut your ribbon to the length (or lengths) of the area you just measured.
Next, gather your hankies and doilies. Cut medium and large doilies in half. (I have not found that the edges of mine fray. I don’t wash them, but you could always use a product such as Fray-Chek on the edges if you are concerned about the unraveling.)
Next, stretch your ribbon out across a long flat surface. (I used my living room floor.)
Alternating colors, patterns, and styles, arrange your hankies and doilies along your ribbon, leaving about 1 inch in between each item.
Once you have placed your hankies and doilies and you are happy with your pattern, pin each one to your ribbon. Finish by sewing your hankies to your ribbon with a simple topstitch.