Wishing all my readers who celebrate Christmas, a special today full of love, friendship and joy!  It is difficult this year as many like myself are unable to gather as normal  -  but it is a small sacrifice to ensure a better Christmas next year. 

Today's post was inspired by my friend, metalsmith, Sonya of Rocpoet who sent me the above picture of a bead and wire spider she made for her aunt.  She wondered if I had heard of the Legend of the Christmas Spider.  I had not! Although there are clearly many beaded spider designers who do!

There are many versions of the story but the Legend of the Christmas Spider is based on an Eastern European folktale which explains how tinsel came to be used for Christmas tree decoration.  It is especially popular in the Ukraine where spider and spider web decorations are common. The little spiders are called "pavochky" and are usually made from paper and wire. 

The story is about a poor widow and her children who nurtured a pinecone so it would grow into a Christmas tree. But there was no money to purchase decorations so the family retired to bed on Christmas eve, sadly resigned to a bare tree. But on Christmas morning, they woke to cobwebs on the tree. The sunlight turned the cobwebs into silver and gold. The family were never poor again.

Other stories of German origin  tell of how the spiders excitedly covered the Christmas tree with their webs.  Father Christmas then saved the day by turning the spider webs into shimmering silver tinsel. 

Ukrainian Spider and Web Christmas ornament
Picture Credit : Museum of Science and Industry Chicago 2007 Christmas around the World

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Original Post by THE BEADING GEM