History of The Mărţişor Good Luck Charm
The Mărţişor is a traditional charm that is given out in Moldova every year. The pretty charm is easy to make and wear and signifies love, luck, and new beginnings. The Moldovan winter is cold and hard so it makes sense that people would want to celebrate it. Since Dacian times Moldovans have celebrated the coming of the Spring as it was a time that the harsh winter was finally gone and the new life began. During the winter months, the people would spend time making pretty charms from thin pieces of wool and coins. The coins would show the wealth and status of the maker and some would be gold with others being made from silver and metal.
Why the Mărţişor Charm Brings Luck
Believed to represent love and luck, the charms would be given by men to the women they loved as a symbol of what was to come. The charms are also used to bring luck with fertility, beauty and some believed they would stop sunburn!
How to Use the Mărţişor Charm
The Mărţişor charm is worn as a pin over the heart area or around the wrist. Traditionally, the charms are not taken off until the trees begin to bloom in the summer. When summer comes the charms are then hung from trees.
How the Mărţişor Charm Is Made
Mărţişors are made by taking pieces of red and white wool and twisting them together to create a tassel on each end. The coin or charm would be put in the middle to make it look like a bow and the Mărţişor is made!
How to Make the Mărţişor Charm at Home
Mărţişors are something you can make at home and whilst it may take some time to make them as perfectly as the Moldovans do, you will find you get the hang of it quickly.
Firstly, get red and white wool – embroidery threads would also be perfect for this task. Twist one of each color together until they are combined. Choose the charm you want to attach and overlap the wool until you have a bow shape. Tie the charm on and attach one red tassel to one end and a white tassel on the other and you have your good luck charm ready to gift.
Interesting and Fun Facts About the Mărţişor Charm
- The Mărţişor legends say that the colors red and white symbolize the blood of a lady who fought to rid the country of the winter witch.
- Another legend says that the colors are traditionally black and white to ward off bad spirits but that St Valentine turned the black to red to help men show their love to women.