Think Red for Artisan Christmas Gifts - Wonderful Handmade Wednesday on Indiemade




The color combination of red and green is closely associated with Christmas - for example, Santa’s red clothing and green holly with red berries.  But how did this come about?  From ancient history to modern time, color has been an integral part of cultural awareness and even an understanding of life; it touched all members of society and conveyed deeper messages (such as, only royalty could wear the color purple).  Red and green as Christian symbolism can be traced back to Medieval Miracle Plays and rood screen painters.  The color combination can be traced to the Mabinogion, a collection of Welsh stories from the 13th century.  And these stories were probably based on an oral tradition that dates back to the pre-Christian Celts many centuries before where a half-red, half-green tree figures prominently in one of the tales.  In pre-Christian times, red and green represented male (red) and female (green), strength and harmony, desire and fertility.  





Peppermint Candy Christmas Dog Scrunchie Neck Ruffle Handmade by Donna of SewAmazin



Today, RED is chosen as the color to be examined a bit more closely as it is associated with Christmas, although it is hard to totally separate it from green. Next week, the symbolism of green will be shared.  


Some scholars believe the tradition of red and green at Christmas dates back to the 1300s.  To educate a largely illiterate population who could not read the Bible, churches would present Miracle Plays.  One popular Miracle Play performed on Christmas Eve was called The Paradise Play and told the story of Adam (in Hebrew, his name means either “man” or “red”) and Eve in the Garden of Eden. God instructed Adam and Eve not to eat fruit from the Tree of Good and Evil, but they did and were banished from paradise.  Since apple trees were leafless and fruitless in winter, churches would bring in pine trees and fasten red apples to their branches to represent the Tree of Good and Evil. Over time, people began to copy this practice in their own homes, developing the tradition of the Christmas tree and using red and green as Christmas colors.





Hand Painted Red Glass Christmas Ornaments with Roses Handmade by Jacki of Christie Cottage





Red is an important symbol of Christ's birth and death and also reminds the world to celebrate His selfless love and sacrifice. Red also symbolizes His teachng of the love for humanity and the world, a love that is unconditional. Holly berries, the red robes of bishops, and red apples on the pine trees of medieval Miracle Plays were the forerunners of Rudolph's red nose, and Santa's red suit in modern times.  In fact, St Nicholas of Smyrna, who lived in the 4th century, was the forerunner of Santa.  Since St. Nicholas was a bishop, he wore red robes and was known for his kindness and generosity in giving gifts to those in need, especially children.  He was revered until the Reformation in the 1600’s where the man of the legend was changed to Father Christmas (who actually dressed in several different robe colors, including red).  In the early days of the United States, his name was Kris Kringle until Dutch settlers came to the U.S. with Sinterklaas or (as we now say) Santa Claus.  In the mid-1800’s the image of Santa was created by Thomas Nast and Santa first appeared on a Christmas card designed by Louis Prang in 1885.  Despite all these name changes, red figured prominently in most clothing choices.





Argentium Silver Wire Wrapped Christmas Tree Earrings with Burgundy Red Pearls Handmade by Pamela of Pebbles at My Feet





In Mexico, the red poinsettia, which grows wild in regions, is a common Christmas decoration - the yellow center against the red reminds families of the star that hovered over Bethlehem.  The red amaryllis and red Christmas cactus also are much used to decorate.  In Argentina, red and white garlands are hung over doorways during November and December.  In Ireland, red candles with a sprig of holly are placed in windows on Christmas Eve, as a guide for Joseph and Mary.




Copper and Red Flower Garden Rectangles, 1 pair,  Handmade by Kristi of KristiBowmanDesigns




Speckled Red Donut Style Ceramic Pendant / Art Bead Handmade by LInda of Linda Landig Jewelry




Women's Knit Red Cowl Scarf Leaf Side Fastener Caron Simply Soft Handmade by Nancy's Knots Lace and More




Ethiopian Cross and Red Jasper Tribal Necklace Handmade by Gloria of Chrysalis Tribal Jewelry




Candy Apple Red Dichroic Glass Pendant and Dangle Earrings Jewelry Set Handmade by Jo of Umeboshi Jewelry Designs




Christmas Red Flower and Crystal Earrings Handmade by Catherine of Shadow Dog Designs



I hope you enjoyed these artisan handmade red selections. Any of the above beauties will make a wonderful Christmas gift!  If you would like to make my day and the day of the artists featured, please leave a comment.  And any promotion you can do will be greatly appreciated.  Thanks!



My contact information:


Indiemade shop:  ShadowDogDesigns

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Beautifully Unique Handmade Jewelry

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Wonderful items....thanks so

Wonderful items....thanks so much for featuring my cowl! All items promo'd.


Tis the Season

How appropriate for this joyous season! Thank you so much for including my red jasper necklace. Now I'm off to share.


These handmade pretties are fantastic! I would be happy to receive any one of these as a gift! Thanks for sharing the finds!

Think Red

I've really been drawn to red lately, not so much wearing it but creating with it. I love all the beatiful joyful red items you've shared including my Red Flower Garden rectangles. Thank you so much!

I love red

Red is such a festive color for the holidays, or anytime really. One of my favorites to design with. Thanks for including my red pearl Christmas tree earrings with your wonderful handmade selections this week. All the best to you for a wondrous and festive holiday.

Love the story

Tweeted all. Will be back to pin and tweet the pins

Thanks Catherine!


Red-y to shop!

Thanks so much for including my peppermint dog scrunchie in this week's blog! Enjoyed reading about the color red, looking forward to next week and green! Sharing :-)

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