Happy Halloween!

'The Washerwomen of the Night'

Jean-Édouard Dargent (1824-99) ,'Les Lavandières de la nuit', c.1861

From Celtic mythology, Les Lavandières, also known as 
the kannerezed noz in Brittany, the Bean Nighe (in Scottish mythology), 
or the Midnight Washerwomen in English, are three old washerwomen. The three 
old women go to the water's edge at midnight to wash shrouds for those about to die 
 according to the myth and folklore of Brittany; or to wash the bloodstained clothing 
of those who are about to die according to British folklore. The story of three 
old women may be due to the old Celtic tradition of the 
triple goddess of death and slaughter

From 'Les légendes rustiques de George Sand'
 illustrated by Maurice Sand  

In Ireland and Brittany they are an ominous portent, foretelling death, 
either one's own or a death in the family. The washerwomen wash either 
graveclothes (Brittany) or the bloodied shirts of those about to die (Ireland). In 
Scotland, however, if one can get between the washerwomen and the water, they are 
 required to grant three wishes in exchange for three questions answered truthfully. There 
is also a tradition in Scotland of a single washer at the ford, the goddess Clotha, who gives 
the River Clyde its name. In Wales and Cornwall a passerby must avoid being seen by 
the washerwomen. If they do get seen however, they are required to help wring 
out the sheets. If they twist the sheets in the same direction as the 
washerwomen, the individual's arms will be wrenched from 
their sockets and they will get pulled into the wet sheets
and killed instantly. If, however, they twist in the 
opposite direction, the washerwomen are 
required to grant the person three wishes

Witch, 1933

...on the dark side...

Henri Husson, Cup with Bat, ca. 1909

Jugend magazine cover art, artist unlisted, 1896
 Illustration by Paul Wilhelm Keller-Reutlingen

Walter Prichard Eaton, 'In Berkshire Fields' [1920]
 Illustrations by Walter King Stone

And she flies...

Midnight Magic 
Vintage Child Life Halloween illustration

Back cover of ' Dennison's Bogie' book, 1922

'The Glassblower's Children'

Flutter Mildweather and her raven, Wise Wit

People often have cats in the country as house pets. 
Or dogs. Flutter Midweather had a raven. Wise. Wise Wit was his name. 
It is not known how she got hold of him - whether she caught him herself, 
for instance - but she’d always had him, and he was a very remarkable creature.
He could talk. And he didn’t chatter just any old nonsense, either. He answered 
directly and very wisely - that is, if he felt like it. Sometimes he didn’t want
 to talk, for he could be quite temperamental. And sometimes he talked 
in riddles so that ordinary people couldn’t make any sense 
out of it- but Flutter understood everything.

 From 'The Glassblower's Children'

 'The Glassblower's Children' 
 by Maria Gripe, illustrated by Harald Gripe

Albert the Glassblower and Sofia are the loving parents of 
little Klas and Klara. Albert makes the most beautiful glass bowls and 
vases (unfortunately they are so impractical that no one will buy them), while 
 Sofia supports the family by working in the fields. Every year Albert goes to the fair 
to try to sell his wares, and sometimes Sofia and the children go too. At the fair 
the family meets Flutter Mildweather, a weaver of magical rugs that foretell 
the future, and Klas and Klara come the attention of the splendid Lord
and Lady of All Wishes Town, who have everything 
they want except for one thing: children...

Purchase the book here

'The Legend of Sleepy Hollow'

'Ichabod Crane pursued by the Headless Horseman',
 by F. O. C. Darley, 1849

The Legend of Sleepy Hollow is a short story by American 
author Washington Irving. Written while Irving was living abroad
 in Birmingham, England, 'The Legend of Sleepy Hollow' 
was first published in 1820

The story is set in 1790 in the countryside around the Dutch 
settlement of Tarry Town (historical Tarrytown, New York), in a secluded 
glen called Sleepy Hollow. Sleepy Hollow is renowned for its ghosts and the 
haunting atmosphere that pervades the imaginations of its inhabitants and visitors. 
The most infamous spectre in the Hollow is the Headless Horseman, said to be the ghost
 of a Hessian trooper who had his head shot off by a stray cannonball during 
'rides forth to the scene of battle in nightly quest of his head'

Ichabod persued by the headless horseman 
by F.O.C. Darley (1822-88)

The 'Legend' relates the tale of Ichabod Crane, a lean, lanky and
 extremely superstitious schoolmaster from Connecticut, who competes with 
Abraham 'Brom Bones' Van Brunt, the town rowdy, for the hand of 
18-year-old Katrina Van Tassel, the daughter and sole child of 
a wealthy farmer, Baltus Van Tasse...

Ichabod dancing with Katrina vanTassel
 by F.O.C. Darley (1822-88)
After having failed to secure Katrina's hand, Ichabod rides home 
through the woods between Van Tassel's farmstead and the Sleepy Hollow 
settlement. As he passes several purportedly haunted spots, his active imagination 
is engorged by the ghost stories told at Baltus' harvest party. After nervously 
passing under a lightning-stricken tulip tree purportedly haunted by the 
ghost of British spy Major André, Ichabod encounters a cloaked rider
 at an intersection in a menacing swamp...

 The Headless Horseman Pursuing Ichabod Crane, 1858 
Unsettled by his fellow traveler's eerie size and silence, the teacher 
is horrified to discover that his companion's head is not on his shoulders,
 but on his saddle. Ichabod rides for his life, desperately goading his temperamental 
plow horse down the Hollow. However, to the pedagogue's horror, the ghoul 
clambers over the bridge, rears his horse, and hurls his severed head into Ichabod's 
terrified face. The next morning, Ichabod has mysteriously disappeared 
from town, leaving Katrina to marry Brom Bones - oh, my...

'Legend of Sleepy Hollow' print by Susan Henke
Purchase it here

'The Legend of Sleepy Hollow' by Washington Irving, 1928
illustrated by Arthur Rackham

The nightmare, with her whole ninefold

Ichabod and Katrina

'Tickley Feather' by J. Hancock

From the book 'Come Unto These Yellow Sands'
 by Magaret L. Woods Published by The Bodley Head , 1915

Tea caddy ca. 1800

Gorham hand-hammered sterling and 
mixed-metal tea caddy ca. 1800


'October' by John Whetten Ehninger, 1867

1855 pumpkin...

ca. 1855, [daguerreotype still life with pumpkin, book, and sweet potato] 

'Happy Halloween' reusable cloth fabric banner

The  'Happy Halloween' banner is made from several 
coordinating fabrics and is backed with a cream coloured cotton 
fabric. The letters have been hand cut and applied with fusible webbing 
to the fabric squares to spell out 'Happy Halloween' The fabrics 
pattern placement may vary per banner

Purchase the banner here:

Black bat earrings

 Spooky Halloween earrings.
Hand cut from sterling silver sheet and, filed, sanded and 
soldered to sterling silver posts, nuts included. They are oxidized 
to make them black/ dark grey but the patina may wear off 
over time  to give a lovely steel coloured finished

Purchase the earrings here:
 Peculiar Forest, Etsy

'The Bat-Poet', 1964

 The Bat-Poet, 1963 by Randall Jarrell, 
illustrated by Maurice Sendak



...the stag with the cross...

From' Internationalen Jagdausstellung Wien', 1910
by Hans Kalmsteiner (ca. 1882/6-ca. 1914/16)

The pictures feature a glowing Christian cross seen between
the antlers of a stag. This image is a reference to the two Christian
patron saints of hunters, Saint Hubertus and Saint Eustace, both of
whom  converted to Christianity after experiencing a vision
in which they saw a Christian cross between
the antlers of a stag

Postcard from eBay

 'The Conversion of Holy Hubertus'
 by Wilhelm Räuber (1849-1926)

An icon of Saint Hubertus depicting his vision
of a cross between the antlers of a stag

'The Vision of Saint Eustace', by Zuccari, dated 1542-1609.
The drawing was the model for one of the frescoes that
decorated the facade of a house in the
Piazza San Eustachio in Rome 

The Met

 The Vision of Saint Eustace is a painting by the early
Italian Renaissance master Pisanello, now in the National Gallery
in London. The date of the work is unknown

Saint Eustace, from a 13th-century English manuscript