August 22, 2014
The Winds of Change are in the Air
Wind chimes are one of the most popular garden accents today and they make a wonderful gift for any occasion. Believe it or not, in many cultures the history of wind chimes dates back to prehistoric times with archeological finds from almost 5,000 years. However, their greatest and most elegant development was in east and south Asia, from Bali to Tibet to Japan.
It was thought that wind chimes help enhance the mind/body/spirit connection, bringing a sense of peace and well-being. Understandably so, they are often used in Feng Shui design. It is also believed that wind chimes can help bring balance and harmony to your garden and home. They were used to encourage prosperity and good luck, especially in Asian culture. Wind chimes were also used to welcome good and friendly spirits and to scare the evil spirits away.
In the days before weather forecasts were available, wind chimes were once used. Weather-wise farmers, sailors and loggers made short-term forecasts from a few observations such as wind speed and direction. Farmers to this day place wind chimes in fields to keep birds and other animals away from their crops. They also believe that wind chimes would ensure a bountiful harvest.
Today, wind chimes are widely used as decorations to produce interesting background sounds with pleasant melodies. They can change the mood or create an inviting atmosphere. Typically, they are made of various sized hollow or solid tubes that hang from strings from a top support. The tubes often hang in a straight line or in a circle. The chimes can be made from metal or wood and in shapes other than tubes or rods, such as bells or other small ornaments. Other materials include glass, bamboo, shell, stone, earthenware and porcelain. When they are hung and the wind blows, the tubes strike each other or an object in the middle of the tubes creating resonating sounds. The sound of the wind chimes will be determined by what they’re made of and how they are crafted.
I enjoy the beautiful sound of wind chimes. No matter where you put them, a little joyful melody carries in the air to your ears. They soothe your soul after a long day. They also are good for daydreaming and bring back good memories. My mom had at least three wind chimes on the back patio, each complementing one another with a different musical sound. My mother loved anything to do with bells. As a child, when we would be playing out of her sight down the street, she would call us home by ringing a large hand bell for dinner.
Bucks Country Gardens carries a varied assortment of traditional, whimsical and solar wind chimes. We also proudly carry Corinthian Bells wind chimes, which are made in the USA. Each tube is precision-cut and hand-tuned to produce notes that are true to scale. When combined together, the clearest notes produce the purest harmony and the most musical chime.
So, let the next breezy day bring you some gentle melodies.
Nancy McIlvaine | Dry Goods Manager