It makes autumn harvest festivals more beautiful and demonstrates great dexterity in artisan craftsmanship. And it is also always admired and gladly awarded a prize - the harvest wreath. Making it is craftsmanship in miniature form. Some varieties of dried grain are cut in different lengths, after which they are tied into bouquets and attached to a crown frame using wire. This highly time-consuming activity, which is usually carried out within the context of a pleasant social gathering, is mainly practised by women’s communities in rural areas.

In East Elbia, the “Rosenfelder Landfrauenverein” (Rosenfeld rural women’s association) cultivates this village tradition.
For the 19th Saxon State Harvest Festival, which took place in Torgau in mid-September 2016, the association, which was founded by Renate Brähler-Kollmann in 1997, contributed such a wreath.

This festival, which is hosted at a different location every year, lasts three days and celebrates the joy of rural living, the wreaths are mostly displayed in churches, thereby presenting themselves to the public. The most beautiful harvest wreath is selected by a jury, and the best are distinguished with an award.

The finished work of art, which is often decorated with ribbons and other ornaments, is evaluated on the basis of various criteria. These include the appearance or originality, attention to the correct proportionality, or the sole use of natural materials. The winner’s wreath proudly leads the final procession through the hosting city.

The information and photos included in this article were taken from the brochure "EAST ELBIA - INTANGIBLE CULTURAL HERITAGE" prepared by b&s consulting and training for the rural area GmbH, as part of the "ARTISTIC" project.