Our High Holy Day Torah Mantle

The design for the High Holy Day mantle arose from the inspiration of prayer and shared love of Torah during the journey through the Days of Awe at Nehar Shalom.  Melinda Strauss had never made a mantle, but relied on
experience with household sewing and a desire to contribute to the community in order to create a cover to clothe the Torah in white. Inspiration translated to materials that represent a luminous, regal robe.

Attention to detail was intended to beautify the physical adornment of the Torah as an expression of our deep personal and communal connection to holiness.

Rabbi Victor and Mieke participated in developing the design and choosing the materials, with production advice from Tzvia Berrin-Reinstein.  Allen Spivack cut the sturdy wood frame from which the mantle hangs, hidden yet essential to shape and stability.  Family, friends, supportive Jewish artists and helpful fabric merchants consulted on worthy materials and upholstering strategies during the year-long process of creating the mantle.

The Nehar Shalom High Holy Days mantle is hand-sewn from crushed velvet, lined with cotton crinoline and silk organza. The trim was fabricated by hand stitching separate braiding, including the 3-strand silver braids that reflect the shine of the breast plate and crowns that dress the Torah during the Yamim Noraim.

The mantle was presented to the congregation on the first day of Rosh Hashanah 5772/2011.

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