Since my teen years, I've been making rose beads, you can read about my adventures here, and here.
For yesterday's Red Thread Circle I led a group of 6 SiStars through the process, and everyone went home with at least a dozen beads in an egg carton! One SiStar shared a necklace she made when her son was young, strung with beads she'd made wrapping the petals around a toothpick, saying a prayer/wish for him as she wrapped each one. She and another participant had driven around 45 minutes to join us (!) and two others also came from our of town.
I have 5 fragrant roses, and old Moss from a cemetery, my family dark pink rose, a
|Fragrant fresh rose petals|
I filled my crockpot nearly to the brim, and added a splash of rose tea. I kept the spices simple, Garam Masala and some extra cinnamon, and began simmering three days before our gathering.
Rose tea : rose petals, rose geranium leaves, lemon verbena, yarrow and lavender, steeped in my little French press.
I'd turn the crock pot on, stir a bit, and leave it at the lowest setting for an hour, and did that a couple of times the first two days, adding a splash of liquid as needed. Late the second day, I ran then through my food processor, and returned the mash to the crockpot, heating and cooling again. Since many of the petals were pale, and the crock pot ceramic, the mash stayed pale. Farmer petals and exposure to iron makes them darker.
|Rose petal mash after grinding|
I brought fresh raspberries and strawberries (both in the rose family!) And two sun teas - one raspberry leaf with yarrow and lemon verbena from my yard, the other a ginger mango white tea. The chocolate was a delicious Honey Mamma beer which rose petals and lavender!
I had little cups for a handful of mash (squeezing the juice back into the crockpot) we filled our cups, and chatted while rolling our beads, and had plates for the finished beads. (More details on the process here)
When we finished, we each had 1-2 dozen beads, and took then home in an egg carton or
|A carton of Rose Beads|
When I got home, there was about 1/2 C of liquid with bits of mash in my crockpot, so I gathered a last round of fresh petals, and added them to the pot. Then got out a couple of jars of dried roses and petals, and separated petals from the stems and other pieces.
Grinding: I filled the hopper of my seed mill, added a sprinkle of Garam Masala and cinnamon, and whizzed several times, then dumped the powder into the top, and refilled the hopper with whole petals, tipped in the powder and ground again. I did that a couple of times, which made for a finer grind! (I'm always learning!)
This was added to the pot, plus some more liquid, and heated (I may have left the crockpot on the warm seeing all night, oops!! Could small them in the morning - mmm!) So sometime today/this weekend I'll grind them, then roll more beads!! I can think of worse things to do!
Lastly, here's a sweet video one of the participants shared - I love the way this Harper/ fairy women sings while rolling the beads! I'm a Harper as well, and the pale yellowish rose at the beginning looks like my Jude the Obscure (one of the Austin roses)
|Jude the Obscure|
Do you have a favorite memory/ use of summer roses?
Happy paint party Friday!!