THIS POST MAY CONTAIN AFFILIATE LINKS. OPINIONS ARE MY OWN.
Before there were glass ornaments and string lights, Christmas trees were decorated in a much simpler way. The concept of the Christmas tree was first introduced in Germany long back in the 16th century. The tree along with its evergreen branches was used to decorated homes during the winter solstice, offering hope of spring to come during winter’s cold and long nights. Back then trees were adorned with candles, nuts, apples and berries. And even today many Christmas trees in Germany are still lit with actual candlelight and decorated with sweets like cookies, gingerbread and straw ornaments along with other decorations. Strohsterne or German straw Christmas ornaments especially are still one of the most popular decorations on a tree due to its deep and widespread symbolism.
Pretty easy and inexpensive to make, straw ornaments are closely tied to the Christ Child being born in a bed of straw. In fact, legend has it that a young shepherdess wanted to give a gift to Baby Jesus but she had no money to buy anything. As she was laying on her straw mattress staring up at the star-filled sky, she saw the star of Bethlehem and suddenly had the idea of recreating the star out of straw and giving it as a special gift.
Straw ornaments are also a great way to keep busy during the cold winter’s days and to show other people how much you love them during the Christmas time, since anyone can make one no matter how much money you have in your bank account. Even in the middle ages, straw was a commodity which was able to everyone.
Nowadays, straw ornaments mostly adorn windows and Christmas trees in Germany. In my home as a child, we used them mostly to decorate other greenery around the house such as Weihnachtssträuße (a Christmas evergreen branch bouquet usually made out of the cut ends from the bottom of the Christmas tree) or Adventskränze (Advent wreaths). Most of the time, the straw ornaments come out of the box even before the Christmas tree shows up, since most of the time it is not set up until Christmas Eve.
MAKE YOUR OWN STRAW ORNAMENT STAR
Using four drinking straws for every star along with thread and scissors, you can make your own straw-inspired Christmas star in a flash.
- 4 DRINKING STRAWS
- NEEDLE THREAD
HOW TO MAKE THE STAR:
- CUT TWO STRAWS IN HALF AND PLACE THEM ON TOP OF EACH OTHER TO MAKE A CROSS.
USING YOUR INDEX FINGER GENTLY PUSH DOWN IN THE MIDDLE OF THE STRAWS AND DO THE SAME WITH THE OTHER TWO STRAWS.
PLACING BOTH CROSSES IN A STAR FORMATION ON TOP OF EACH OTHER, USE THREAD TO GO OVER AND UNDER THE STRAWS UNTIL ALL THE WAY AROUND.
KNOT THE ENDS TOGETHER AND PULL TIGHT (YOU MIGHT NEED HELP WITH IT). CUT THE REMAINING ENDS.
REPEAT THE SAME ONE MORE TIME BEFORE TYING THEM BOTH TOGETHER USING THE SAME TECHNIQUE AS ABOVE OF GOING OVER AND UNDER AND TYING A DOUBLE KNOT AT THE END.