I am a big fan of wax and seals for letters and a really big fan of all things OldIrish/Celtic. It must come from my heritage which is a montage mixture of Irish, Scottish, Welsh and English, with a soupçon of French and German thrown in for good measure; in other words, a typical American.
I love Old Irish legend and mythology. I love to read the old tales about the Fir Bholg and the Tuatha Dé Danann and the great heroes, Cú Chulainn and Fionn mac Cumhail aka Finn McCool and then there are the Kings: Cormac and Conchobar Mac Nessa and the great Brian Boru. Enough, enough, I can go on and on about this topic, it is just so colorful, interesting and full of wonderful tales. Here is a great resource to resources for more information on Irish Literature, Mythology, Folklore and Drama if you would like to read more about this.
So, when I decided to by a ring for my better half, George, I wanted something really special and I found what I was looking for from John Urban Rings. This particular design is called the Double Dog Design.
I like the Double Dog Design for a number of reasons, not the least of which is we have two dogs, but also the symbolism of the design. Here is the description from John Urban's website of this design: "Featuring four stylized Irish wolfhounds, which represent the qualities of dogs - the qualities of faithfulness, unconditional love, and trust. Four represents several things: the four directions of the compass, the four seasons, and the four classical elements. I would read this pattern to mean, 'Wherever you go, to the North, South, East, or West; whenever you go; (whatever the season is), and whatever you are going through (on land, water, through the air, or fire (through troubles), remember; you are connected.'"
Here is more information about the symbolism of dogs in Celtic mythology.
The following is from deSignet International's website:
Dog: Sacred to the faeries of Ireland and Scotland probably because they were held in high regard by the Tuatha de Danann. Many Celtic myths involve dogs or dog familiars, which belonged to heroic figures or deities, and wars were often fought for and over them such as the one between Fionn MacCumhal and King Arthur. Examples of the importance of Celtic dogs are found in the myths of Gwyn Ap Nuad, Cuchulain, Amaethaon, and Taliesin. Dogs are also the archetypal symbols of shapeshifters
From Fleur-de-lis Designs the dog represents courage, vigilance and loyalty.
My obsession with this design lead me to have a custom journal cover made by Adam Grandin - so by now do you think I like the Celtic dog designs?
I know, I know... you are saying to yourself, okay, thanks for all the info and the links, but WHAT THE HECK DOES THIS HAVE TO DO WITH SEALING WAX?!?
Well, all this is what determined, for me, what my seal needed to look like. So I started searching the internet for seals with a Celtic theme, specifically a Celtic Dog design.
Lo and behold, I found The Design Station, located in Wolverhampton, England (believe me, by now I am an expert at finding the best prices on the Internet and their seals and stamps were the least expensive I have found).
They supply sealing wax from Waterstons of Scotland, the following information is from The Design Station's website:
Waterstons High Quality Scottish Sealing Wax sticks with a taper/wick throughout the length of wax. With good adhesive quality, this wax is ideal for the individual user and corporate projects. All sticks are mailable and contains a flexi agent (please see wax posting notice). Available in 35 wonderful colours - stick size approx. 10cm length. All colours contain a wick.
So here is my seal:
From The Design Station website:
On a letter:
I am very pleased with the results and I was very pleased with the service provided by The Design Station - in fact I'm planning to order more sealing wax to take advantage of their quantity discount and make sure that I don't run out. Plus, there are all those COLORS!!