What is the Summer Solstice?
The Summer Solstice, also known as Midsummer, is an ancient celebration that marks the arrival of summer. It’s a time wherein the sun reaches its highest point in the sky in the Northern Hemisphere, bathing the world in its warm glow for an extended period. The word “solstice” is derived from two Latin words, namely sol meaning “sun” and sistere meaning “to stand still.” This is because the Sun’s pathway, as seen from Earth, seems to pause at the Northernmost limit before reversing its direction.
Midsummer Eve and Midsummer Day are two distinct parts of the Summer Solstice celebration, each carrying its own significance and traditions.
Midsummer Eve refers to the evening preceding the Summer Solstice. It holds a magical aura and is associated with rituals, bonfires, music, and dancing. In many countries, it’s believed that supernatural forces are particularly active on this night, and traditions often involve warding off evil spirits or seeking blessings for the upcoming season. People come together to celebrate with family and friends, enjoying feasts, singing, and engaging in joyful activities until the late hours.
While the festivities of Midsummer Eve often extend into Midsummer Day, the daytime celebrations may include outdoor activities like picnics, sports, or nature walks. It’s a time to enjoy the outdoors, soak up the sun’s energy, and appreciate the beauty of nature.
The Summer Solstice holds great significance in various cultures throughout history and is associated with fertility, abundance, and the power of the sun. People gather to honor the sun’s energy and revel in the bountiful gifts of nature. From ancient pagan rituals to modern-day festivals, the Midsummer Solstice is a time of joy, merriment, and a deep connection to the natural world.
How is the Summer Solstice Celebrated Around the World?
The Summer Solstice is celebrated with various traditions and rituals in different parts of the world. Here are a few examples:
In Sweden, the Summer Solstice is a cherished holiday known as Midsommar. People gather to dance around maypoles adorned with flowers and leaves, symbolizing fertility and the abundance of summer. Traditional folk dances, such as the famous Små grodorna or “Little Frogs” dance, are performed. Family and friends come together for festive meals featuring pickled herring, smoked salmon, boiled potatoes, and grilled meat.
2. United Kingdom
During the Summer Solstice, the United Kingdom honors ancient tradition by gathering at the Stonehenge, a mystical prehistoric monument. Thousands of people meet to witness the sunrise aligning with the stones. It’s believed to hold spiritual significance and is associated with druid rituals and pagan celebrations. Bonfires are also lit across the country to ward off evil spirits and bring luck and protection.
In Brazil, the Summer Solstice coincides with Festa de São João do Porto, a vibrant celebration that pays tribute to St. John the Baptist. On Saint John’s Eve, the city of Porto is filled with music, dancing, and bonfires. People wear colorful outfits and enjoy traditional dances like quadrilha, which is a form of lively square dancing. Popular food and drinks include grilled meats, sardines, and peppers, as well as the famous caldo verde or green broth soup.
Estonia celebrates the Summer Solstice with a traditional festival known as Jaanipäev. It’s a time for bonfires, singing, and dancing. Family and friends barely sleep as they gather on this “white night” where the sun sets late and rises early, making the summer evening look like dusk. Many take part in ancient traditions such as staying awake until dawn, looking for a fern flower or a small glow-worm, and jumping over the bonfire to bring forth good luck and prosperity. Traditional food includes cottage cheese pastries and dairy products, but nowadays, barbecued meat, sausages, and potatoes are served with fresh salads and home-brewed beer.
In Norway, Sankthansaften is celebrated on the Summer Solstice. Flowers play an integral part of the festivities in Nordic regions, wherein superstitious beliefs involve decorating houses with flowers for protection. It’s also believed that gathering seven different types of flowers under the pillow to sleep on give the dreamer a vision of his/her future spouse. Like most celebrations on the Summer Solstice, people come together to enjoy the warmth of a large communal bonfire and take part in various activities such as singing, dancing, and storytelling. Additionally, small floating handmade boats with lit candles on lakes and rivers is a common practice, symbolizing the sun’s reflection on the water and the hope for a bountiful harvest.
These traditions, practiced around the world, add an enchanting touch to the Summer Solstice celebrations. Each tradition which has long been practiced by different cultures reflects the unique cultural significance of this special day.
What Should You Wear on the Summer Solstice?
As the longest day of the year approaches with the arrival of the Summer Solstice on June 21, it’s essential to embrace the spirit of the season and make the most of the sun-drenched hours. And what better way to celebrate this special day than with a pair of trendy flip flops that perfectly capture the carefree essence of summer?
When it comes to choosing flip flops for this celestial event, you’ll want to opt for styles that are not only fashionable but also comfortable, allowing you to fully enjoy the festivities and activities that often accompany this magical day. Here are a few recommendations for trendy flip flops that combine style and comfort:
1. Bohemian Flip Flops
These flip flops feature intricate, colorful straps with bohemian-inspired designs such as fringes, feathers, crystals, and even small shells. They exude a free-spirited vibe that perfectly complements the joyous atmosphere of the Summer Solstice. The soft and cushioned footbeds ensure all-day comfort, making them ideal for long musical festivals.
To complete the boho-chic look, pair your flip flops with a long skirt or wide-leg pants. You can also wear a kimono or cardigan over a maxi-dress. Feel free to accessorize with some floral hair accessories, beaded necklaces and bangles.
2. Floral Flip Flops
Embrace the vibrant colors and blooming nature of the Summer Solstice with flip flops featuring beautiful floral prints. If you’re into arts and crafts, you can even make your own DIY floral flip flops by adding real or fake flowers onto the straps. These flip flops capture the essence of the season and add a touch of freshness to your outfit. Whether adorned with delicate daisies or tropical blossoms, floral flip flops exude a sense of natural beauty and are perfect for strolling through meadows or attending garden parties during the festive celebrations.
In line with this “flower power” theme, complement your floral flip flops with retro top and bell-bottom jeans or a wide-legged jumpsuit with a psychedelic print. Don’t be afraid to put on some outlandish accessories such as oversized sunglasses, thick headbands, and statement necklaces or earrings to achieve that perfect blend of 70s nostalgia and contemporary flair.
3. Embroidered Flip Flops
Channel the artistry and craftsmanship of unique cultures by opting for flip flops with intricate embroidery. These flip flops showcase detailed patterns and designs, inspired by indigenous markings or folk art. The embroidery adds a unique and eye-catching element to your footwear, making them a stylish choice for cultural events and traditional gatherings.
Wear a white blouse or tunic with embroidered patterns to highlight the design of your flip flops. You can also opt for a flowy sundress with an embroidered belt tied above the waist. Keep your outfit neat and simple so that you don’t overpower the embroidery. This simple yet elegant look commemorates ancient customs and practices.
4. Eco-Friendly Flip Flops
For those who prioritize sustainability, eco-friendly flip flops are an excellent choice. Made from natural cork, rubber, or even recycled plastics, these flip flops allow you to celebrate the Summer Solstice while reducing your ecological footprint. They are designed with utmost comfort in mind, providing support for your feet for long walks on the beach or picnics in the park.
For a relaxed and casual look, wear your flip flops with a cropped t-shirt and shorts. You can also pair them with a flannel shirt and ripped jeans. This laid-back outfit is perfect for spending quality time with family and friends, feasting, singing songs and telling stories.
5. Embellished Flip Flops
If you’re looking to add a touch of glamour to your Summer Solstice ensemble, opt for flip flops adorned with embellishments or metallic accents. These shiny details will catch the sunlight or reflect the glaze of the bonfire, and add a playful shimmer to your look. You can also wear flip flops with detailed straps and wedged heels to add a bit of drama. Whether you’re enjoying some drinks with your friends or dancing from dusk until dawn, these flip flops will keep you comfortable and stylish.
Dress up your flip flops with a cocktail dress or tailored pants to create a sultry look. Add some rhinestones or glitter accessories to your attire which complement your embellished flip flops. With this shimmering ensemble, you’re sure to be the center of attention at the party.
The Summer Solstice invites us to embrace the warmth, light, and joy that the longest day of the year brings. Selecting trendy flip flops for this occasion allows you to express your personal style, while ensuring comfort for the festivities ahead. So, as you slip on your trendy flip flops, feel the warmth of the sun on your skin, and embark on a memorable journey as you partake in the enchanting traditions and festivities of the Summer Solstice.