Look What We Made: Imbolc Wedding Cloaks

Complementary green handfasting cloaks for bride and groom

I was so pleased with how these wedding cloaks turned out, and the bride and groom were over the moon when they saw them!

The happy couple showing off their cloaks in front of Glastonbury Tor
The happy couple modelling their cloaks in front of Glastonbury Tor

The consultation

Amelie and Matt came to see me at my studio in Glastonbury as they’d heard that they could get a pair of handmade cloaks tailored to their wishes. Together we came up with designs that were complementary but not matching. The resulting cloaks can be enjoyed by the couple on their happy day and for many years to come.

Amelie and Matt in their cloaks at Glastonbury Tor
Imbolc Blessings to you both for a wonderful life together.

Bridal cloak

Amelie explained that she and Matt were getting married in a couple of months’ time in the Glastonbury Goddess Temple, and that they would be wearing green for Imbolc. Amelie was also wearing green when she came to the consultation – she told me it was her favourite colour!

I had bought some luxury velvet a few months back, on a whim as I just loved the colour: a light spring green, often known chartreuse.

A green velvet cloak is perfect for Imbolc, which is one of my favourite times of year. As soon as I showed Amelie the fabric, she instantly loved it and chose a silver satin lining and luxury silver faux fur as a trim around the hood.

The handfasting couple wearing their cloaks
Amelie and Matt’s cloaks can be worn again and again for a lifetime of enjoyment

Groom’s cloak

Matthew was not as sure about what he would like – as is often the case with the groom!

I suggested an unlined, dark green wool cloak with a trim of the same Imbolc-green velvet around the hood, to complement Amelie’s cloak without being too similar.

I also suggested that we line just the hood for a smarter look. It was for their wedding, after all!

This simple design means that Matt can wear his cloak again. It is made from a durable wool that is hard-wearing, warm and reasonably waterproof. A shorter length – just below the knee but not to the floor – makes it dashing but also practical.

A couple of oak leaves appliquéd at the clasp make the cloak extra special.

Imbolc cloaks on the tailor's dummy at the Avalon Cloaks studio
The Imbolc cloaks on the tailor’s dummies at the Avalon Cloaks studio

The results

The cloaks looked great together when I put them on the tailor’s dummy in the artisan studio at the Red Brick Building. I couldn’t wait to see them on!

Amelie and Matt kindly agreed to let me take some photos of them wearing the cloaks, and here are the results.

Imbolc Blessings to you both for a wonderful life together. I hope you have many years of enjoyment wearing your cloaks.

Merry meet
Suzi xx
Merry meet
We hope you have many years of enjoyment wearing your cloaks! Blessed be.

Imbolc and the Returning Light

posted in: Cloaks, Imbolc, Wheel of the Year | 0
Brighid shown with full belly and flame, representing new energy at Imbolc
Bridget shown with full belly and flame, representing new energy at Imbolc. Here she is represented as Maiden, with all the accompanying energy that comes with youth. Yes please! I could do with some of that to combat those Janurary blues!

Imbolc falls on February 2nd, 2016

Last year, I gave you lots of lovely information about the goddess Bridget, and how to get your fire back after those January blues! So much has changed for me since then.

Last year, I decided that I would make a beautiful Imbolc cloak in honour of Bridget, and while it is nearly finished, it isn’t quite there. Rather than being hard on myself, I have decided to be kind to myself and remember that Imbolc is a season, as well as a special day on the calendar.

Imbolc marks that time when we feel a glimmer of new energy – a spark – the first stirrings of our movement from stillness to action. Tiny, tentative shoots are emerging; snowdrops herald Spring and mirror the green and white of Bridget’s cloak.

It is easy to feel frustrated at this quiet time of year. We are looking to the year ahead, but sometimes things just don’t move quickly enough, and January can seem endless! One way to relieve this is to bring old projects (like the Imbolc cloak) to completion, thus clearing the way for the new.

Below are some other useful ideas to connect with Bridget and the energy of Imbolc:

Connecting with Bridget

  1. Sweep your ritual place – whether that is the area around your altar, a corner of your garden, or a temple room – symbolically with your broom.
  2. Good old Spring cleaning! Let go of old energy by de-cluttering on the physical plane.
  3. Sweep your home, pushing all the stuck, stagnant energy out through the back door, then open the front door to let the new energies in.

Candlemas

Imbolc is also known as Candlemas. This year I am drawn to putting lots of candles on my altar. Every year at Imbolc, I put a lit candle in every window of the house to invoke Bridget of the flame, and every year I add something new to my Bride doll.

What will you do to honour this time of returning light?

Bright blessings,
Suzi x

Introducing the Imbolc Cloak!

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Imbolc Cloak with LiningBridget is one of my favourite Goddesses; she has helped me many times in my life with her healing and inspiration, and I wanted to make a cloak that would honour her.

This cloak has been a year in the making. I bought the fabric immediately when I saw it, just over a year ago. I just loved the pale green colour, how the fabric felt so divine and had a very slight sheen, and that it was a silk/linen mix, which means it drapes beautifully.

The Imbolc cloak – one year in the making!

I really wanted to make the cloak last year, in the energies of Imbolc and its promise of new beginings, but I was just too busy with other sewing projects. So although I cut out the fabric then, only now has it all been sewn together.

White fur around the hood was a must-have – to represent the snow that can still be on the ground at this time of year. The addition of the trim of pale green, earthy colours and silver sequins just seemed to finish it off nicely. To me they represent new shoots, bare earth and frost.

Finishing touches…

The Imbolc cloak is not completely finished yet. I still want to add some appliquéd snowdrops around the lower hem and maybe some swans’ wings (Bridget’s totem) on the back, but once again, I am too busy with orders so I will have to wait patiently.


In a way, I like the idea of this cloak being a blank canvas as we come into its season. I plan to journey with Bridget at Imbolc (this coming Tuesday, 2nd February) and ask her what images she would like to be sewn into her very special cloak. I will then set about finishing this project after I have blessed the space, lit my candle and incense and asked Bridget to be with me whilst I sew.

Bright blessings,
Suzi xx
29th Jan 2016

Get Your Fire Back at Imbolc

Snowdrops at Imbolc

Wheel of the Year: Imbolc

Imbolc comes six weeks after Midwinter on the 1st February and is known as the festival of the returning light. It is also the start of the farming season when lambs are born and spring is round the corner. Indeed, its name derives from the Gaelic oimelc which translates as “ewe’s milk”.

Bridget at Imbolc

Maiden Fire Goddess Folk Art by Wendy Andrew
Maiden Fire Goddess painting by Wendy Andrew www.paintingdreams.co.uk

I love Imbolc! What a relief to have the wonderful returning light after the dark, cold, dampness of winter.

In the pagan tradition, Bridget is the young maiden who sweeps away the dross of winter. She takes what was the old Crone’s walking stick and strikes it on the ground, waking up the seeds, bulbs and plants from their winter sleep.

Much has been written about Bridget for she truly is an amazing goddess and one that is very close to our hearts here in Britain.

The Irish honoured Bridget as a saint, and she was often known as Brigit-Ana – this is where the British Isles get their name – Brittania.

She is a triple goddess of healing, poetry and smithcraft. This is her link with fire – just as the Smith strikes metal to purify and therefore strengthen it, so we can purify our souls through life’s lessons. Bridget helps us to release anything we no longer need, revealing our bright, shining essence.

Celebrate Bridget and work with her energies to transform your life with these five fabulous steps:

Imbolc: How to get your fire back

  1. On Imbolc Eve, simply light candles in every window of your home and leave overnight to welcome and honour the returning light (this year, Imbolc falls on Monday 2nd February, so light your candles this Sunday evening!)
  2. Clear out the cupboards, closets, garden shed, paperwork pile etc. – all those things that have been hanging around for far too long! Give your unwanted items to charity, or simply dispose of what you no longer need. These old things that hang around not only take up space but also your energy as well.
  3. Sweep and clean the path up to your front door, mentally clearing away any old, stagnant energy and welcoming new opportunities to come your way.
  4. Bridget, as the maiden, likes new things, new ideas and looking to the future. Plan to do something you have never done before, or go somewhere you have never gone, for later on in the year. This will move your mind to the future, to excitement, planning and hope.
  5. Place a picture of Bridget on your altar and invite her energies into your life. I particularly like this evocation that is at the White Spring in Glastonbury:

“Dearest Bridget please connect with me now. I invite you into my life to help energise and revitalise my mind, body and emotions. Help me connect with my creativity and enthusiasm.”

Connect with Bridget in our FREE guided meditation – included in our monthly newsletter. You will also learn about the uses of fire agate and receive a positive affirmation for February.

Wheel of the Year: What is Imbolc?

posted in: Cloaks, Imbolc, Wheel of the Year | 0

Imbolc (usually celebrated on February 2nd) is a Celtic fire festival that marks the first stirrings of spring.

Known also as Candlemas, Imbolc is the festival of Bridgit. We welcome her as the Triple Goddess and celebrate and acknowledge her as maiden. This is the time of the first stirrings of light, the dawn of spring. The goddess is again young. She banishes all that is outworn.  She sweeps clean the Earth and our lives.

Imbolc is the perfect time to let go of the old and bring in the new!

Imbolc intentions

  • let go of the dross of winter
  • honour Bridgit
  • find inspiration

Think about the darkness of the winter – the time of stillness. What has died in your life? What can you now let go of?

Bridget or Bride carries a staff – Barrach Bride (Birch of Bride) – representing her quickening fire energy. As she strikes the ground with her rod, she awakens the land and our creativity.

I awaken the land with my rod of fire. I am the Lady of the Quickening. As I walk the land at Imbolc I touch the earth with my rod and plants and flowers once again spring to life.

It is a time of cleansing and purification. Spring-cleaning prepares our minds and bodies for resurgence.

You may have noticed increased energy levels recently and a feeling of ‘out with the old, in with the new!’

Not only is it the season of Imbolc, but we have also had two new moons during January – one right at the beginning of the month and one today! It is definitely time for a fresh start. This weekend, why not take advantage of the flow of the seasons and focus on a new direction in your life.

Brightest blessings x