Chalice Well Altar Cloth

This design was inspired by the Chalice Well. The Chalice Well is an ancient well to be found in Glastonbury Town, Somerset, England which is the presumed site of Avalon from Arthurian Legends. The Well is connected to the Red Spring which is one of two healing springs in Glastonbury, the other being the White Spring. The Red Spring is coloured by iron and the White Spring is coloured by calcite. The Chalice Well and Red Spring are said to be the female counterpart of the male Tor Hill and White Spring.

The Chalice Well Garden is one of my favourite memories from living in England. The lid of the well is decorated with two intersecting circles (called Vesica Pisces when in reference to geometry) which are crossed by a staff (some think a sword, possibly Excalibur). There are many different interpretations of the meaning of the well lid but to me it represents that when two connecting elements are brought together, life will spring fourth. I deduce this mainly from the intersecting circles which are surrounded by flowers, combined with the fact that the design is for the cover of a well.

I have used this circular Chalice Stamp to make altar cloths of sand coloured cotton and moss green satin. It has also been used to make circular convertible travel altar cloth pouches. I purposely chose a rusty coloured material for the outside, just like the iron rich residue left by the water of the Red Spring. The inner material is sand coloured as sandstone is a commonly used building material in the area of Somerset.