Friendship Cloths

Friendship cloths were made by collecting a square of silk, which was painted or embroidered with a flower or other ornamentation, then signed by close friends. As enough squares were collected, they were hand stitched tenderly together into a lap blanket or quilt to keep both the body and heart warm for years to come.

For the solitary practitioner, a friendship cloth would indeed have to be collected from friends. While still small, this cloth could be used as a special covering for prized magical tools or as a central part of the altar. For the coven, however, I see a beautiful way to literally sew the members together into a visual harmony.

As new members are initiated into the order, they would be required to bring their square to add to the cloth, which could be the cover for the altar or a vestment for the Priest/ess at all gatherings. Their pieces could be embroidered or painted with a personal rune or message, and sewn into the cloth after initiation. If anyone ever leaves the group, the square remains behind as a permanent record, a living history if you will, for the coven.

For the group that adopts this type of idea, you could create a special ritual for connecting the pieces together. This ritual should be linked to the times when new members join. This way the members are not only united in word and deed, but symbolically as well. The altar cloth or vestment could be presented to each Priest/ess of the order as they accept their position in the group. In this manner it would act as a token of their position, to be a visual reminder of the people who's spiritual welfare and guidance are trusted to them.

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