Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Wood Sprites, An Old Fashioned Halloween

I never know where these wee folk might appear! This year, the wood sprites have made a playground of my hutch.
We have sister, little brother and mother.
A Schleich squirrel is guarding the babies. One of them sleeps in a walnut shell stuffed with moss.
1. I do have a thing for wool felt. The book, Felt Wee Folk by Salley Mavor  has directions for sewing these adorable dolls. Their bodies are shaped from bendable pipe cleaners, wrapped in embroidery floss. Colorful wool felt is cut for clothing and embroidered for whimsy. Their heads are painted wood beads with dyed sheep's wool for their hair and an acorn cap tops off their ensemble. Aren't they adorable? They do take hours to make, but the crafting is as much fun as the playing with afterwards.
2. Our little town of Fincastle celebrates Halloween in an old-fashioned, Norman Rockwell-ish way. At 6:00, as the courthouse bell tolls, hundreds of costumed children gather at the town square. They march down the block en masse, in a parade of sorts, up to a big old house where a witch brews a roiling cauldron. Each child receives a bag of candy from her and then is set free to trick-or-treat around town. Many homes are fully decorated with eerie sounds, smoke machines and costumed candy-givers. Orange lights are strung across the streets. (They're the large, old-fashioned kind of bulb from my childhood.) The First Presbyterian Church transforms its basement into Hogwarts Hall and little children cling to their parents in the dark as creepy hands clutch at their legs. I walk around alone this year to take in the sights and laugh at the spectacles. Daughter #4 still dresses up (as an "old-school" ghost) and helps a friend take her little brother around. Our friends open their home to invited guests and serve baked goodies and hot cider. They have counted about 300 trick-or-treaters. I end my evening there, to warm up, chat with friends, and wait for Daughter to meet me. At 8:00 we walk back to our parked car. The streets are almost deserted, but those orange lights do keep it cheery.
3. I have two packets of candy in my pocket. : )


  1. Maybe next year we can take Mari trick or treating in Fincastle!

  2. Those dolls are awesome!

    And I love your description of the town Halloween - what a wonderful community to pull together like that.

  3. Oh my gosh, I love the acorn caps as hats! Adorable. I love to craft, and working with felt and found objects from earth is like eating comfort food. Feels so good.

    Max stayed home and handed candy out to the tricker treaters this year. Another milestone. (But only because he couldn't get a ride to where he wanted to go!) It worked out well--he enjoyed seeing the little ones in their costumes. :)

  4. Catching up on blog reading today and glad to read that you and your family were safe during the storm. Our family and friends in our native NJ are still dealing with power outages,but are safe. Halloween seemed to be a wonderful community celebration from your description. We wkipped the holiday this year.