The fourth and final runner that I made for our wedding feast was the element of earth.
From ‘Water, wind, earth, and fire: the Christian Practice of Praying with the Elements’ by Christine Valters Paintner:
“Earth stands for what is material and solid in our being. It is the element our bodies are made of, breathed into, lit on fire, with blood and water flowing through our veins. It becomes the container for the other elements. Earth as an element symbolizes the commitments and necessities of our lives. It represents our limitations as well as our possibilities. When we are deeply rooted, our branches can reach far and wide.”
When Steve and I were in London purchasing his trousseau, I found the perfect brown silk dupioni to use as the base. I used cream twill for the backing and added a middle layer of cotton wadding. I wanted my earth runner to be very solid. I screenprinted gold leaves with metallic fabric paint onto the silk. The runner was 130″ x 13″ and made for a table to seat eight people. This photo was taken post-wedding feast and has the impressions from someone’s wine glass on it.
When it came time to do the stitiching, a single line of gold metallic thread was all that it needed. I wanted to keep it very simple, restful and quiet. The design felt Japanese.
O Earth! O Earth! When will we hear you sing,
Arising from our grassy hills?
And say: “The dark is gone, and Day
Laughs like a bridegroom in His tent, the lovely sun!
His tent the sun!
His tent the smiling sky!”
How long we wait, with minds as dim as ponds,
While stars swim slowly homeward in the waters of our west?
O Earth! When will we hear you sing?