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UK Edition: Burns Night Traditions With LifeCovers

Jan 25, 2011

by LifeCovers

Etsy.com handmade and vintage goods

Sally Lucas, a.k.a. LifeCovers, works from her studio overlooking the Lammermuir Hills in Scotland. She produces bags and cushions using fabrics manufactured or designed in the UK, including the luxurious, hand-woven Scottish cloth, Harris Tweed. Today she shares some Scottish traditions which take place tonight, in honour of an internationally revered bard.

What is a Burn’s Supper? To answer this question you must first learn a little of the man who is known as Scotland’s National Poet. In 22 years of creative writing, Robert Burns (often referred to as Rabbie) composed hundreds of songs, poems and letters. He died aged only 37, and his funeral was attended by over 10,000 people.

His writings tell the stories of ordinary people and the way they lived their lives. Rabbie was, however, anything but ordinary. He had a wry sense of humour, an alleged thirst for drink, a deep nationalist pride in his beloved Scotland and an insatiable passion for women.

Photo by GrantR

A few years after his death in 1796, a group of his friends gathered for an evening of recitals and song as a tribute to his memory. Hence, Burns Night was born and has been celebrated for over 200 years throughout the world on January 25, the evening of the anniversary of his birth.

A Burns Supper commences with the Selkirk Grace:

Some hae meat and cannot eat.
Some cannot eat that want it:
But we hae meat and we can eat,
Sae let the Lord be thankit.

Haggis is a central part of the meal. Here’s a recipe from days gone by — delicious!

“Take the liver, lungs and heart of a sheep and boil them. Mince the meats and mix with chopped onions, toasted oatmeal, salt, pepper, and spices. Take one properly cleaned sheep’s stomach. Stuff the cleaned stomach with the prepared contents. Sew up the stomach (leaving enough room for expansion to avoid a large messy explosion) and boil. Serve and eat.” – Via worldburnsclub.com

Photo by glynsatterleyprints

A piper makes his way into the dining room ahead of the chef who is carrying the haggis; the guests join in with a slow hand clap. The chairman then recites Burns’ famous poem “To a Haggis.” When he reaches the line, “an’ cut you up wi’ ready slight,” he cuts open the haggis with a sharp knife.It’s customary for the party to toast the haggis with a glass of whisky.

Cheers Rabbie!

Many thanks to Sally and a swig of whisky to dear Rabbie and our Scottish Etsians. Check out some of Sally’s fab work in the Sellers Items and see our Burns inspired picks in the Related Items below.

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Etsy International | Shop Local Scotland | The UK Edition

HARRIS TWEED clutch, black and white houndstooth with bright pink lining, Scottish gift
HARRIS TWEED clutch, black and white houndstooth with bright pink lining, Scottish gift
LifeCovers
$54.01 USD
Cosmetic bag, makeup pouch in pink and green houndstooth HARRIS TWEED with waterproof lining
Cosmetic bag, makeup pouch in pink and green houndstooth HARRIS TWEED with waterproof lining
LifeCovers
$28.36 USD
HARRIS TWEED Tartan Pencil Case, red and black plaid, McIver tartan
HARRIS TWEED Tartan Pencil Case, red and black plaid, McIver tartan
LifeCovers
$25.65 USD
7 inch DPN holder in HARRIS TWEED, turquoise and jade choices, knitting needle storage, knitting accessory, gift for knitters
7 inch DPN holder in HARRIS TWEED, turquoise and jade choices, knitting needle storage, knitting accessory, gift for knitters
LifeCovers
$13.50 USD
HARRIS TWEED cushion cover, Scottish stag, Stag pillow cover, handwoven in Scotland
HARRIS TWEED cushion cover, Scottish stag, Stag pillow cover, handwoven in Scotland
LifeCovers
$47.26 USD
Harris Tweed wool brooch , black and white pin , handmade in Scotland , Scottish gift
Harris Tweed wool brooch , black and white pin , handmade in Scotland , Scottish gift
LifeCovers
$10.80 USD
Green herringbone HARRIS TWEED Glasses Specs eyeglass case
Green herringbone HARRIS TWEED Glasses Specs eyeglass case
LifeCovers
$25.65 USD
HARRIS TWEED Kindle  Voyage Sleeve, blue and grey check
HARRIS TWEED Kindle Voyage Sleeve, blue and grey check
LifeCovers
$31.06 USD
HARRIS TWEED Glasses or sunglasses case, blue and green plaid
HARRIS TWEED Glasses or sunglasses case, blue and green plaid
LifeCovers
$25.65 USD
Small brown coin purse, HARRIS TWEED, pocket purse, gift for men, pocket purse
Small brown coin purse, HARRIS TWEED, pocket purse, gift for men, pocket purse
LifeCovers
$12.83 USD
Pink HARRIS TWEED makeup bag - cosmetic bag
Pink HARRIS TWEED makeup bag - cosmetic bag
LifeCovers
$31.06 USD
iPad Air padded cover in MacLeod HARRIS TWEED tartan, made in Scotland
iPad Air padded cover in MacLeod HARRIS TWEED tartan, made in Scotland
LifeCovers
$47.26 USD
reserved - brown plaid tunic dress
reserved - brown plaid tunic dress
Sold
Literature Pendant - Robert Burns
Literature Pendant - Robert Burns
Sold
Tinyment - a tiny metal tenement
Tinyment - a tiny metal tenement
$32.41 USD
Going to the Hill, Invercauld
Going to the Hill, Invercauld
$108.00 USD
Robert Burns-vintage inspired literature cameo romantic poet The Bard portrait brass steampunk  pin brooch
Robert Burns-vintage inspired literature cameo romantic poet The Bard portrait brass steampunk pin brooch
$16.00 USD
Castle Stalker, Fine Art Print, Scotland, UK
Castle Stalker, Fine Art Print, Scotland, UK
$25.00 USD
Wrap Serape Poncho Shawl
Wrap Serape Poncho Shawl
$141.78 USD

86 comments

  • LittleWrenPottery

    LittleWrenPottery said 6 years ago

    I lived in Scotland for four years, although I loved living there I could never quite bring myself to eat haggis. Its just not my thing! Hope everyone celebrating tonight has a roaring good time :)

  • Sneddonia

    Sneddonia said 6 years ago

    Great article! But it's whisky, not whiskEy D:

  • VeeDubz

    VeeDubz said 6 years ago

    great article!

  • ScottishPrincess

    ScottishPrincess said 6 years ago

    Sneddonia is right - Whiskey is Irish, whisky is Scottish. :o) Great article. Well done Sally.

  • stupidcats

    stupidcats said 6 years ago

    Fab article, hurrah for you - and hurrah for Rabbie! x

  • ikabags

    ikabags said 6 years ago

    Great article! Thanks !

  • maggiemaevintage

    maggiemaevintage said 6 years ago

    cheers!!

  • AmityUK Admin

    AmityUK said 6 years ago

    Thanks for the info on the correct spelling of Scottish whisky, girls! Have changed it. :)

  • blessedvintage

    blessedvintage said 6 years ago

    Interesting!

  • TwinkleStarCrafts

    TwinkleStarCrafts said 6 years ago

    Terrific article. I love features about historical people, places and events.

  • LifeCovers

    LifeCovers said 6 years ago

    Thanks for the correction Amity. Happy Burns night everyone.

  • SixSkeins

    SixSkeins said 6 years ago

    Excellent article - love the photo :)

  • charlesandoliver

    charlesandoliver said 6 years ago

    Very interesting article.......happy Burns night.

  • JudiPaintedit

    JudiPaintedit said 6 years ago

    Sounds fun

  • MegansMenagerie

    MegansMenagerie said 6 years ago

    Great article! I love that photo! Breathtaking!

  • abbeysaccessories

    abbeysaccessories said 6 years ago

    This is a great article. I'm a lover of history, guess that's why I love all things vintage. I just want to preserve pieces of it.

  • Lightboat

    Lightboat said 6 years ago

    A fabulous tradition which my family celebrate each year. I find Burns' poetry a little hard to translate though - a bit like Chaucer! 'Wee, sleekit, cowrin, tim'rous beastie'!

  • 13threads

    13threads said 6 years ago

    This is a wonderful article. ...and enjoy your haggis, neeps and tatties tonight!

  • dragonhouseofyuen

    dragonhouseofyuen said 6 years ago

    well done Sally!! .. och ..(lifting glass) here's to you! and to Burn's Night!!

  • KitzieG

    KitzieG said 6 years ago

    Great insights - thanks LifeCovers! Hope everyone celebrating has a great evening.

  • littlebirdesigns

    littlebirdesigns said 6 years ago

    Honest men and bonnie lassies! great article ty

  • mcldrygoods

    mcldrygoods said 6 years ago

    love this. :)

  • reflectionsoflight

    reflectionsoflight said 6 years ago

    I feel so honoured to have my photograph of beautiful Castle Stalker on this page! Travelled through Scotland a few years ago, and just moved a few weeks ago! I am very excited to be able to experience my first Burns dinner tonight :D

  • thedoghouse

    thedoghouse said 6 years ago

    Fantastic article Sally, & great to see Burns night being celebrated here on Etsy! I love Burns poetry & will never forget the 12 poems I studied for my Higher English, To A Mouse being my personal favourite. Can wholly recommend Sally's Harris tweed bags too - my partner & I both received one for Christmas & they're lovely ;-)

  • redrubyrose

    redrubyrose said 6 years ago

    Cheers Rabbie! I LOVE a good haggis supper :)

  • ohbabydotcom

    ohbabydotcom said 6 years ago

    great article :)

  • FruteJuce

    FruteJuce said 6 years ago

    I will get out the veggie haggis tonight. Although I have no piper to walk before it!

  • NoFrump

    NoFrump said 6 years ago

    there's a replica of Burns' cottage in a neighborhood near mine in Atlanta: http://www.wrensnestonline.com/blog/robert-burns-cottage-of-atlanta-atlantas-oldest-house-museum/ Not exactly the real deal, but interesting nonetheless! Perhaps I'll read a poem there today. :)

  • AeFondKis

    AeFondKis said 6 years ago

    Happy Birthday Robert Burns! In honour of his genius I have made a textile bookmark 'My love is like a Pink Pink Rose'.....and my shop is called after my favourite Robert Burns's song 'Ae Fond Kis'....please visit!

  • utterlybespoke

    utterlybespoke said 6 years ago

    On this cold and dreich day it is heartening to read of our Great Scots Poet , Burns.

  • Lin222

    Lin222 said 6 years ago

    Excellent...Txs for sharing... Lin

  • Parachute425

    Parachute425 said 6 years ago

    What fun! Will raise a glass myself in honor tonight.

  • daydreamjewels

    daydreamjewels said 6 years ago

    Great article!

  • Schmutzerland

    Schmutzerland said 6 years ago

    Thanks for including my Robert Burns brooch! Great article!

  • jammerjewelry

    jammerjewelry said 6 years ago

    Love the article!

  • EyeSigh

    EyeSigh said 6 years ago

    Very interesting!

  • TheMillineryShop

    TheMillineryShop said 6 years ago

    Wow, loved this article, thank you from a New Yorker. Ah, Haggis. Must find that veg recipe.

  • AvianInspirations

    AvianInspirations said 6 years ago

    There's a Burns night here in Logan, perhaps I'll have to check it out. Sounds fun!

  • OuterKnits

    OuterKnits said 6 years ago

    Great article. Oh, to be in Scotland!

  • LivingVintage

    LivingVintage said 6 years ago

    Aye, where's my bloody kilt?

  • Asianexpressions

    Asianexpressions said 6 years ago

    Wonderful!

  • flyingcheesetoastie

    flyingcheesetoastie said 6 years ago

    Wow, thanks for featuring my cufflinks too! I'm actually starting an evening class tonight so maybe we'll do Burns themed things!

  • shop1848

    shop1848 said 6 years ago

    Great article! Fantastic photos!!

  • senioritis

    senioritis said 6 years ago

    Don't know about the haggis, but we'll certainly raise a glass to Rabbie tonight. Anyone considered Scotland's favorite son deserves a proper senioritis tribute; time for us to get to work on a Robert Burns design ;)

  • UneekDollDesigns

    UneekDollDesigns said 6 years ago

    What a most enjoyable article, I loved reading it, and thannk you for featuring my little version of "Robbie" ! :) Now I need to go out and get a book of Burn's poems, I feel inspired to read them!

  • alatsupplies

    alatsupplies said 6 years ago

    thank you so much for sharing! it was so exciting to read!

  • myvintagecrush

    myvintagecrush said 6 years ago

    Thanks for a lil learnin' in the mornin'!

  • paramountvintage

    paramountvintage said 6 years ago

    i love the "going to the hill" photograph!!!

  • grandmamarievintage

    grandmamarievintage said 6 years ago

    Wonderful article! Thanks!

  • MinnowDesignsIX

    MinnowDesignsIX said 6 years ago

    I love everything about Scotland, even haggis. Though I am a vegetarian and have never tried it. The tradition is really neat.

  • bowlabeau

    bowlabeau said 6 years ago

    Love the brooch!

  • ThePolkadotMagpie

    ThePolkadotMagpie said 6 years ago

    Love Scotland, but drew the line at Haggis. I worked for Paul Haggis the director of "Crash." Whenever I would see "haggis" written somewhere , I would gulp. Thanks for all the interesting historical info.

  • Avarae17

    Avarae17 said 6 years ago

    Great article! You can buy amazing veggie haggis! I had one at a party on Saturday and it was actually nicer than the meaty version! Off to another Burns night tonight (my husband can't get enough Haggis, Loves it!) x

  • thedoghouse

    thedoghouse said 6 years ago

    Happy Burns night to all! A little treasury tribute: http://www.etsy.com/treasury/4d3f06f28d5d6d91f792978a/to-a-mouse ;-)

  • ziggyandfriends

    ziggyandfriends said 6 years ago

    Great to see the Scots being celebrated! Good read Sally!

  • HoneysuckleLane

    HoneysuckleLane said 6 years ago

    Very interesting post! Thanks for sharing! :)

  • accentonvintage

    accentonvintage said 6 years ago

    Love Scotland and the Burns article. Very interesting!!

  • CrayonHall

    CrayonHall said 6 years ago

    super interesting!

  • vintagemaison

    vintagemaison said 6 years ago

    My family originally came from Loch Lomond, and it's been years since I was in Scotland. I'll be having a wee dram o' the Scottish sauce tonight, but not with haggis - with coq-au-vin ;)

  • EarthBabyDesigns

    EarthBabyDesigns said 6 years ago

    To Burns! Supposedly I am a distant relation, through one of his brothers. My mother's Uncle was named for him because of this family rumor. I have not been able to prove or disprove the tale, though.

  • tigersanddragons

    tigersanddragons said 6 years ago

    A friend of mine used to throw great Robbie Burns parties, there'd always be good drink and all types of musicians jamming together.

  • theroyal

    theroyal said 6 years ago

    ok thats good thank you

  • paulofnavarone

    paulofnavarone said 6 years ago

    mmmmmm. haggis is lovely. puts hairs on your chest and all that.

  • ChrissiesRibbons

    ChrissiesRibbons said 6 years ago

    Interesting article- wish I was in Scotland around Burns' Night!

  • HesedBooksAndGifts

    HesedBooksAndGifts said 6 years ago

    Wonderful article! So nice to see the tradition of Burns Night going strong. :)

  • eyongs

    eyongs said 6 years ago

    wanderful

  • SheerSoyCandles

    SheerSoyCandles said 6 years ago

    I love it. Fantastic article!

  • redemptionart

    redemptionart said 6 years ago

    Wonderful article, someday, I must try Haggis!

  • girliepains

    girliepains said 6 years ago

    Great read :)

  • LifeCovers

    LifeCovers said 6 years ago

    Hope you all enjoyed your Burns Supper last night. Many thanks for all your wonderful comments.

  • DalkullanJewelry

    DalkullanJewelry said 6 years ago

    Wonderful article, thanks for an interesting and informative post!

  • tuckooandmoocow

    tuckooandmoocow said 6 years ago

    Love it! Awesome article. Don't know if I'm brave enough to try haggis yet, but I'll always love Robert Burns, so that's 1 for 2 :)

  • WoodlandCottage

    WoodlandCottage said 6 years ago

    Wonderful, all around! Slaithe, and thank you!

  • poorjimsvintage

    poorjimsvintage said 6 years ago

    great pictures.

  • lovisetto

    lovisetto said 6 years ago

    Interesting article!

  • EmilyAliceBall

    EmilyAliceBall said 6 years ago

    Mmmm, I'd have loved some haggis and tatties and neeps for burns night. Wonderful pictures in your article.

  • namasteyworld

    namasteyworld said 6 years ago

    This is a great post... thank you for sharing...

  • beatyboutique

    beatyboutique said 6 years ago

    Wonderful article

  • beatyboutique

    beatyboutique said 6 years ago

    Wonderful article

  • AliBaliJewellery

    AliBaliJewellery said 6 years ago

    well done Sally, great article!

  • DonnaWalker

    DonnaWalker said 6 years ago

    Thanks for the article. I visited Edinburgh for the first time in March and LOVED it - would love to go back.

  • LittleMinchArt

    LittleMinchArt said 6 years ago

    Aye, he was some lad!

  • ParamoreArtWorks

    ParamoreArtWorks said 6 years ago

    I live in Burns! Yep, Burns, Oregon USA. Named for Robert himself by a man who was supposed to go get everyone's votes for the town name when our tiny little western town was getting started. Big snow storm hit so he decided to cast everyones vote himself and named the town after his favorite poet! We even have a special celebration day every year for him. Thank you for sharing!

  • cespetitsriens18

    cespetitsriens18 said 6 years ago

    Robert Burns is the new Apple ;) Wowww

  • LoveButtons

    LoveButtons said 6 years ago

    Have enjoyed several memorable Burns Nights - but I'll stick to the vegetarian version of the haggis ;o)

  • Google said 2 years ago

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