Thursday, August 5, 2021

How to Weave Aromatic Lavender Baskets


Summer is the season for floral weaving.  Fresh lavender's long, flexible stems and lasting fragrant aroma make it a favorite for this purpose.  Similar to Lavender Wands, creating a beautiful Lavender Basket with flowers from your garden is a charming way to spend a summer afternoon.
 
How to Weave Aromatic Lavender Baskets

How to Make a Lavender Basket

 
Materials:
  • 22 long stems of freshly cut lavender
  • 1 1/2 yards of ¼” satin ribbon (additional 12" for a bow - optional
  • Scissors
  • Patience 

Give yourself time and space to enjoy crafting.  It can be a little tricky to work with fresh flowers in this manner, so don't hesitate to undo a step or two and start over.  Perfection isn't the goal, rather joy in the act of creating.

How to Weave Aromatic Lavender Baskets

Step 1 — Strip the lavender stems of any side shoots, leaves or buds so that only the main flowerhead remains.  Trim all stems to the same length, about 12”.


Step 2 — Line up the base of each flowerhead and tie the ribbon in a square knot at the base of the flowers, leaving one shorter end of 5 inches and one long end (which will be used for the weaving).

How to Weave Aromatic Lavender Baskets

Step 3 — Hold the bundle of stems with the flowers facing down and gently fold the stems down one at a time over the flowers, encasing them.  Tuck the shorter end of ribbon into the flowers so that you can begin weaving with the long length of ribbon.

How to Weave Aromatic Lavender Baskets   

Step 4 — Weave the longer length of ribbon through the stems.  Take the ribbon over two stems and under the next two repeating this pattern in a counterclockwise direction.  Pay close attention to which stem comes next because they can become entangled when you weave.

How to Weave Aromatic Lavender Baskets

How to Weave Aromatic Lavender Baskets

Step 5 — Continue to weave until you cover half of the lavender flowers. 

How to Weave Aromatic Lavender Baskets

How to Weave Aromatic Lavender Baskets

Step 6 — Select two strong stems to become the handle of the basket.  Trim all other stems to ¼” above the top row of weaving.  Ideally the two stems you choose should be next to the long end of ribbon you have been using to weave.

How to Weave Aromatic Lavender Baskets

Step 7 — To start forming the handle, gently bend the pair of stems over the flowers reaching towards the other side of the basket.  This will help start to train the stems to bend.

How to Weave Aromatic Lavender Baskets

Step 8 — After you have pre-bent the two stems, begin weaving them tightly together with the remaining long end of ribbon.  Weave the ribbon around each stem individually until the woven stems are long enough to bend to the opposite side of the basket.

How to Weave Aromatic Lavender Baskets

How to Weave Aromatic Lavender Baskets

Step 9 — When the woven stems are long enough to curve to the opposite side of the basket to create a handle, cut the stems half inch from the end of the ribbon.

How to Weave Aromatic Lavender Baskets 
 
Step 10 — Gently bend the woven stems to the opposite side the basket and firmly insert the end between the woven basket base and the flowerheads.

How to Weave Aromatic Lavender Baskets

How to Weave Aromatic Lavender Baskets

Step 11 — Gently pull out the short end of ribbon (from the center of the flowers) and use it to tie a square knot with the end of the ribbon that you have used to weave the stems.  This will help secure the handle in place.  Once the square knot is secure, trim the ribbon ends leaving 3-4 inches for the finishing bow.

How to Weave Aromatic Lavender Baskets

How to Weave Aromatic Lavender Baskets

How to Weave Aromatic Lavender Baskets

Step 12 — To finish your lavender basket a bow is a nice touch.  To make a small bow, loop a length of ribbon back and forth on itself until you have 2 loops on each side.  Trim the ends to match the width of the loops.

How to Weave Aromatic Lavender Baskets

How to Weave Aromatic Lavender Baskets

Step 13 — Position the ribbon loops on top of the square knot at the base of the handle and use ribbon tails from the square knot to secure the ribbon loops.  Tie a tight square knot and trim the ribbon ends to the width of the ribbon loops.

How to Weave Aromatic Lavender Baskets    How to Weave Aromatic Lavender Baskets

How to Weave Aromatic Lavender Baskets

Bravo!  What a beautiful lavender basket to hang in a favorite place or gift to a special friend.  If you enjoyed this project, you might try your hand at making a Lavender Wand.

How to Weave Aromatic Lavender Baskets

Wednesday, June 16, 2021

How to Weave Aromatic Lavender Wands


Summer is a beloved season of many for many reasons.  Gardeners and floral artisans are enamored of summer for its abundance of fresh blooms for all manner of floral art, including floral weaving.  Fresh lavender's long, flexible stems and lasting fragrant aroma make it a favorite for this purpose.  

Join us in the garden on a warm summer afternoon and let's make a Lavender Wand together.

Aromatic Lavender Wand made of Organic Lavender

How to Make a Lavender Wand


Materials:

  • 11 long stems of freshly cut lavender
  • 1 yard of 1/4" satin ribbon (additional 12" for a bow - optional)
  • Scissors
  • Patience 

Give yourself time and space to enjoy this craft.  It can be a little tricky to work with fresh flowers in this manner, so don't hesitate to undo a step or two and start over.  Perfection isn't the goal, rather joy in the act of creating.
 
How to Weave Aromatic Lavender Wands

Step 1 — Strip the lavender stems of any side shoots, leaves or buds so that only the main flowerhead remains.   Trim all stems to the same length, about 12”.

Woven Lavender Wands Instructions

Step 2 — Line up the base of each flowerhead and tie the ribbon in a square knot at the base of the flowers, leaving one shorter end and one long end (which will be used for the weaving).

How to Weave Aromatic Lavender Wands

How to Weave Aromatic Lavender Wands

Step 3 — Hold the bundle of stems with the flowers facing down and gently fold the stems down one at a time over the flowers, encasing them.  Tuck the shorter end of ribbon into the flowers so that you can begin weaving with the long length of ribbon.

How to Weave Aromatic Lavender Wands    How to Weave Aromatic Lavender Wands

Step 4 — Weave the longer length of ribbon through the stems.  Take the ribbon over two stems and under the next two repeating this pattern in a counterclockwise direction.  Pay close attention to which stem comes next because they can become entangled when you weave.

You can weave in any pattern that you fancy.  In this tutorial we are weaving over two/under two, but you could weave over one/under one or over two/under one or... it's entirely up to you!

How to Weave Aromatic Lavender Wands with Pelindaba Lavender

How to Weave Aromatic Lavender Wands with Pelindaba Lavender

Step 5 — Continue to weave until you have covered all of the lavender flowers.

How to Weave Aromatic Lavender Wands with Pelindaba Lavender

Step 6 — When you have covered the flowers entirely with your woven ribbon, gently pull out the short end of ribbon (from the center of the flowers) and use it to tie a square knot with the end of the woven ribbon at the base of the weaving.

Pelindaba Lavender shows how to weave Aromatic Lavender Wands

Pelindaba Lavender shows how to weave Aromatic Lavender Wands

Step 7 — To finish your lavender wand a bow is a nice touch.  To make a small bow, loop a length of ribbon back and forth on itself until you have 2 loops on each side.  Trim the ends to match the width of the loops.

How to Weave Aromatic Lavender Wands

How to Weave Aromatic Lavender Wands

Step 7 — Position the ribbon loops on top of the square knot at the base of the weaving and use ribbon tails from the square knot to secure the ribbon loops.  Tie a tight square knot and trim the ribbon ends to the width of the ribbon loops.

How to Weave Aromatic Lavender Wands

How to Weave Aromatic Lavender Wands

Step 8 — To keep the wand end tidy, tie the bottom of the stems together with a little extra ribbon and trim the stems evenly if needed.

How to Weave Aromatic Lavender Wands

Bravo!  Your beautiful wand is now ready to cast a few spells, grace a dressing table or perhaps be a gift for a friend.

Of course, if after reading through this "how to" you don't think making a Lavender Wand is your cup of tea but you'd still like one, we have beautiful finished Lavender Wands made by our skilled artisans at the farm ready for you.

A Beautiful Woven Aromatic Lavender Wand

Thursday, May 20, 2021

Nature's First Aid - the medicinal and therapeutic uses of lavender


Few flowers or plants have been used in the multitude of ways lavender has been.  First harvested in the wild by inhabitants of countries bordering the Mediterranean Sea – its native habitat – lavender came to be specifically cultivated in herb gardens for its many medicinal and therapeutic properties.

Nature's First Aid - the medicinal and therapeutic uses of lavender

Lavender was notably featured in “Physica” – the 12th century treatise written by the extraordinary medieval abbess, Hildegard von Bingen and believed to be the first definitive European manual on the use of herbal medicines.  She found it particularly beneficial in the treatment of what appear to be migraine headaches that accompanied some of the visions she described in her writings.
 
In addition to these soothing properties that led to its widespread use as a sleep inducer, lavender’s all-natural disinfectant properties also found widespread use in the prevention of skin and wound infection, long before anyone knew anything about microorganisms, let alone antibiotics.  Similarly, the discovery of its dramatic topical anesthetic properties led to its use as a salve for treating burns, insect bites, skin irritations and other symptomatic rashes.  Lavender's anti-inflammatory properties also assist in skin healing and reducing scar formation.  These interesting and well documented natural therapeutic uses of lavender have received increasing attention, particularly in an age when many are looking away from artificial chemicals for both therapeutic and preventative healthcare products.

Taking lavender's powerful medicinal and therapeutic properties into consideration, we've curated a list of our favorite products to include in your lavender first aid kit.

Organic Lavender Essential Oil

Organic Lavender Essential Oil


It all starts here.  All of lavender's medicinal and therapeutic properties are derived from it's essential oil.  Among all the herbal essential oils, Lavender Essential Oil is somewhat unique in that it is one of the very few essential oils that can be applied undiluted directly onto the skin with no toxic effects.  As such, it is highly effective as a topical antiseptic, anesthetic and anti-inflammatory in many common therapeutic situations.

As a topical anesthetic:

  • superficial cooking or baking burns
  • bee stings or bug bites
  • abrasions
  • pimples

As a topical antiseptic and anti-inflammatory:

  • preventing wound infection
  • treating pimples (utilizing lavender's natural solvent property as well!)
  • minimizing scar formation during healing processes

Lavender essential oil is also a known anxiolytic —a highly effective anxiety reducing agent in both people and animals.  As an added benefit, apply a couple drops of lavender essential oil under your patient's nose to help soothe them with each inhalation.

To ensure optimum quality, unlike many others who buy their oil from "bulk sources" with no clear production history, all our essential oil is Certified Organic by Washington State Department of Agriculture and distilled right here on the farm exclusively from the lavender flowers we grow ourselves in our own San Juan Island, WA fields.

Organic Lavender Hydrosol


Organic Lavender Hydrosol


Our organically certified 100% pure Lavender Hydrosol is produced during the steam distillation of essential lavender oil on the farm.  Lavender hydrosol is a natural and (technically speaking) permanent colloidal suspension of a small amount of essential lavender oil in a large volume of water.  Also known as floral water, it is an ideal vehicle for bringing the properties of lavender essential oil to a variety of therapeutic needs.

  • For rinsing, cleaning, and promoting rapid healing of skin abrasions and cuts
  • For soothing on itching skin associated with sun or wind burn, eczema, dryness and aging
  • As a preferred wet wipe for infant and adult personal hygiene (particularly useful in healing and preventing diaper rashes)

In addition to these uses, lavender hydrosol brings the solvent, disinfectant and insect repellent properties of lavender essential oil to an equally wide range of household, work space, pet, plant, automobile, boat and other care applications.

Lavender Treatment Stick
 

Lavender Treatment Stick


This is our must-have for deploying the natural antiseptic and powerful topical anesthetic properties of lavender essential oil in a convenient stick delivery system for easy application and portability.  For quick, on-the-go care, our Lavender Treatment Stick is an excellent way to treat cuts, bug bites, abrasions and burns and to soothe headaches, joint aches, sprains and bruises.  It also doubles as a skin and lip moisturizer as needed.  

Parents and caregivers especially appreciate this easy-to-apply delivery system for use with little ones.

Lavender Hand Sanitizer

Lavender Hand Sanitizer


A means of sanitizing the hands is a must for any first aid kit.  Our alcohol-free and alcohol-based versions of Lavender Hand Sanitizer take full advantage of the naturally-occurring antiseptic,  disinfectant and solvent properties of lavender essential oil. 

Note: Given that lavender’s efficacy specifically against the Covid-19 causative agent has not yet been definitively tested under laboratory conditions, we cannot and do not make the claim that the alcohol-free version of our hand sanitizer offerings is appropriate for protection against that agent.  To learn more about lavender as a sanitizing agent - click here.

Nature's First Aid - the medicinal and therapeutic uses of lavender

For centuries, the ability of lavender essential oil to treat, limit or even prevent a wide spectrum of diseases and disorders caused by antimicrobial agents — bacterial, fungal and viral — was informed by everyday observation by healthcare deliverers and populations at large.  The arrival, over the past two to three hundred years, of synthetic chemical alternatives that were easier or less expensive to produce in large quantities largely displaced this use of lavender essential oil.  People in general turned to synthetics because they were more readily available, less expensive or indeed in some cases more effective.  As many are now looking for alternatives to artificial chemicals in everyday use products, lavender is — as it has been for millennia — ready to provide preventative and therapeutic care. 

Tuesday, February 2, 2021

The Perfect Match - Lavender and Chocolate

 
One of the most widely enjoyed culinary lavender pairings is lavender and chocolate.  Each, on its own, is delightful and can be partnered with many other flavors across the taste spectrum, but bring these two together and ...wow!  Each flavor elevates the other without diminishing any of its own complexity or potency. 

For chocolate lovers and lavender lovers, the pairing provides a unique taste adventure of lightly floral notes that blend beautifully with the rich notes of chocolate creating a singular experience.
 
Organic Lavender Chocolate from Pelindaba Lavender

Our Organic Lavender Gourmet Chocolate is made with the organic lavender that we harvest from our own certified organic fields and certified organic chocolate from Rainforest Alliance certified farms.  Rainforest Alliance is a well-respected international non-profit that works across business and agriculture, building alliances to help ensure the protection of the environment and wildlife and to improve the livelihoods of cocoa-producing farm families.

Taking into consideration the spectrum of flavor preferences and because it would never do to have just one chocolate and lavender pairing, we have embraced the maxim "more is better" with three pairings to suit everyone's palate.

Organic Lavender Dark Chocolate

 
Like a good glass of red wine, Organic Lavender Dark Chocolate warrants particular savoring.  Deeply rich and decadent, this chocolate is lifted by the lightly sweet notes of the lavender.  There is no bitterness to experience when enjoying this dark chocolate, nor any guilt as the health benefits of antioxidant-rich dark chocolate are well documented.  In fact, as red wine boasts the same benefit, pour yourself a glass to accompany your Organic Lavender Dark Chocolate for a "healthy" dessert.  You're welcome!
 
Organic Lavender Dark Chocolate

 

Organic Lavender Milk Chocolate

Fair warning... Organic Lavender Milk Chocolate is sweet and smooth and far too easy to gobble up.  The natural sweetness of lavender and the sweetness of this milk chocolate are equally enhanced by one another creating a flowery, strong lavender experience. 

Organic Lavender Milk Chocolate

Organic Lavender White Chocolate

This is the lavender chocolate for those who don't like chocolate.  Our Organic Lavender White Chocolate contains none of the cocoa solids that are found in dark and milk chocolates.  This staff favorite is a sweet flavor retreat that is well-worth taking.  The velvety, creamy texture with sweet, subtle nutty and vanilla undertones supports the lavender through the entire taste journey.  If chocolate isn't appealing to you, may we tempt you with this "unchocolate" that pairs beautifully with lavender?

Organic Lavender White Chocolate

Each bar of our Organic Lavender Gourmet Chocolate is both GMO and gluten free and 1.25oz of deliciousness!

If you are new to lavender and chocolate's glorious union, we recommend trying all three flavors.  They are all so different — give your taste buds all of their options!  Then start exploring the mouthwatering wider world of lavender and chocolate... Lavender Hot Chocolate, Lavender Chocolate S'Mores, Lavender Chocolate Dipped Strawberries and the easiest and tastiest — Lavender Chocolate Brownie.

If you are, like we are, an avowed lavender and chocolate lover, let us know in the comments below how you prefer to experience this beloved flavor couple.