Handfasting was practiced in Northern Europe
as a primary stage to marriage
still practiced into modern times.
“Handfasting” is derived from the verb
used for making a contract of marriage.
The couple is promised for “a year and a day”
as they hand-festa
(Norse:” to strike a bargain by joining hands”).
The rite varies between practitioners
but usually incorporates the participants
to bind their hands together with ribbon or chord;
a physical extension of promises made and kept.
Using a design of two strands creating a combined knot
stronger than the sum of it’s parts.
The bracelets are to be put on during the ceremony
and worn for the “year and a day”;
then cherished as a keepsake when the marriage is preformed.
Many have chosen the bracelets for handfasting
and the rings for the marriage.
The Handfasting Rings
hold the same knot work design
for those people that find the bracelet too cumbersome.
Lovers Knot Ring
I have made another version of the Lovers Knot,
giving it a more “Celtic” feel:
weaving the knot work in to a more intricate design.
Celtic Lovers Knot Ring
If you are looking for a custom piece to be created for you,
I can design a knot work for your Wedding
or Handfasting that would be a “two of a kind” set.
Other Rings may be seen at the
created and developed
by Kirk McLaren
of Amulets by Merlin
You may recall I have been making Isaac Bonewits designs in my jewelry line for some time. I have recently developed his classic Druid Awen as a Brooch.
The Awen Isaac created is more than the simple dot and stave seen in the old writings: this is a wreath of oak leaves with the Mesopagan Druid symbol of the “three rays of light” emanating from three acorns and staves (like wood) completing the design.
I have augmented the piece by making it a functional Penannular Brooch. the Brooch Frame is of knot work of my own making with a pin mounted and able to “travel” around the frame.
To learn how to use a Penannular Brooch and learn more about this new piece, please visit my page The Awen Penannular Brooch.
To see more of my designs of Isaac Bonewits, please view my Bonewits Collection.
As many of you already know, I have been producing the designs of Issac Bonewits featuring the Awen. In his design, the symbol is of three acorns (the source of light) with three staves (the emanation of the Light) framed in a wreath of leaves. The original amulet is about an inch tall. Since then I have developed the design into a larger version of the Awen of an inch an a half and a smaller version I am using to hang from Shepard hook earrings. This year I have gone even smaller, about 3/8 of an inch and attached a stud for pierced ears.
When you go to my website, you may find the entire collection of Isaac’s designs which include the Sigil, a Pentacle which he named “Spells for Democracy“, an amulet of Dagda’s Shield, Dagda’s Club, as well as the Awen pendant designs. I have also expanded his collection to include an Awen Ring.
Originally designed by Isaac Bonewits, interpreted, developed and produced by Amulets by Merlin. Available in single and pairs.
On this page is the new link for the Awen Stud Earrings which may be purchased one at a time or in pairs. To get your Awen Stud Earrings, you may go to the special ordering page – available in Sterling silver.
For more Druid Jewelry please visit my Druid Jewelry Page.
I wrote earlier about the Triquetra Amulet and Earrings: simply meaning “triangle”; Triquetra refers to a variety of three-cornered shapes and evolved into a symbol of depth. This Celtic three cornered knot represents three-in-one: the Trinity.
To augment the Triquetra Knot I have added a woven circle: The Unity of the Trinity, the Circle of Love unifies all.
To combine the Amulet with matching earrings, I have created: the Merlin’s Triquetra Collection. Now you may order the entire set and added the option of your desired length of chain. The Triquetra Collection are for those who cherish what the idea of the Trinity in any of its forms: The love of family, their religion, the earth itself, or simply find the shape of the triangle pleasing to their eye.
More collections may be found on my Collections Page
I wrote earlier about the Triquetra Amulet: simply meaning “triangle” and has been used to referred to a variety of three-cornered shapes but has been evolved into a symbol of depth. To accompany the Amulet, I have created a set of earrings of the same design: the Triquetra Earrings.
Added to the Triquetra is a woven circle: The Unity of the Trinity, the Circle of Love unifies all. The Triquetra Earrings are for those who cherish the Trinity in any of its forms: The love of family, their religion, the earth itself, or simply find the shape of the triangle pleasing to their eye.
More Ear Jewelry from Amulets by Merlin
A variation on a theme: the Lover’s Knot. For centuries, this has been used in rigging by sailors, the merging of two ropes extending the use of one by merging it with the other: a knot that makes the bond stronger. In the Traditional Lover’s Knot Ring, I developed the design as a promise ring, hand fasting or wedding ring. I have used the same knotwork pattern in the creation of the Handfasting Bracelet.
Some have decided they like the idea yet wanted something a little different, so I designed the knot to be more “Celtic”, using the traditional knot work approach illustrated in the book of Kells. The weaving “in and out” says the same thing: two become one, their strength is greater than the sum of it’s parts; a metaphor describing how a couple’s commitment may strengthen each others’ lives. This Celtic version of the Lover’s Knot is woven “in and out” providing a more dense look to the design. By following the strands that wrap around the band you can see that the “two (chords) are one”. This design has been used to symbolize the “wedding knot” for centuries and used in “handfasting”: a promise to be true “for a year and a day”.
If you would like to have this ring made for you, don’t worry about sizes, each is made as they are ordered to allow for the right size and the possibility of inscriptions to be made on the inside of the band. Simply go to my web page featuring the Celtic Lover’s Knot Ring.
More Rings may be seen at the
created and developed
by Kirk McLaren
of Amulets by Merlin
A few years ago I created Jewelry for Isaac Bonewits. He created renderings of several designs and sent them to me to create for his special line of Jewelry. One of them is the Awen.
Large Awen Amulet
In his words:
“The sign of “the Three Rays” is used by members of the United Ancient Order of Druids, the Ancient Order of Druids, the Order of Bards Ovates; Druids, and many other followers of Druidry. It can be seen as symbolizing Sky Father Energy in balance with the Earth Mother energy of the Druid Sigil, as well as any of a thousand other sets of three ideas.”
The design itself is a wreath of oak leaves, three staves emanating from three Acorns. The bail from which to hang the amulet is also an oak leaf curled to hold the chain or cord. On the reverse side of the “signature” of the artist: “Merlin” or Kirk McLaren of Amulets by Merlin.
After creating the original Awen I have received several requests for a larger version of the piece: same wreath of leaves, acorns and staves: but larger. I now present to you: the Large Awen.
When Isaac was still with us he traveled with the amulets and his books and other items; he even created a special portion of his website to feature the work. Since his passing into the Summerland I have continued to produce his line for him. For each piece purchased Isaac’s Widow receives a royalty to help through difficult times and encourage in efforts to promote good will and clarity to the world. To learn more about Isaac Bonewits, his writings and more, you may visit his website.
To learn more about the new, larger version of Isacc’s Awen, please visit my web-page featuring the Large Awen Amulet.
For more druid jewelry,
please visit my Druid jewelry page