Tag Locks

Not all the spells you cast are going to be for yourself, many witches cast spells for their loved ones or cast curses on those who deserve it.  Yet the people you’re casting these spells for might not always be near by or able to take the spells with them (if you have them in a physical form), so many witches use tag locks in order to tie the spell to the person.  A tag lock is either something from the person, whether hair, blood, or nails, or something that reminds you of that person.  Many people use pictures of the person they are trying to affect with the spell or curse as well.  The tag lock that you are choosing to use doesn’t have to be something obvious to everyone, recently I made a protection spell with gears for a friend who loves inventing.  As long as it reminds you of the person, it will help direct the universe’s energy towards them.  Just make sure you get permission from the person before using a tag lock for them.

~Elyce

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Stone Magic-Protection

Stones are a very good resource when it comes to magic.  You can easily carry one with you and they don’t often arouse suspicion for those witches who are still in the broom closet.  They can also be used to enhance spells and charge other items.  Below are a list of protection stones to add to your spells or carry with you.

Protection

Obsidian

Jet

Amethyst

Diamond

Emerald

Fire Agate

Hematite

Onyx

Clear Quartz

Black Tourmaline
~Elyce

Healing Salve

This is one of my favorite salves, I use it for chapped skin, lips, and cuts.  Since it contains St. John’s Wort, it’ll also keep away faeries.  It also contains comfrey, which makes the injury close faster, so make sure you clean the injury before using this.

Ingredients

½ Tsp of St. John’s Wort

½ Tsp of Comfrey

½ Tsp of Plantain Leaf

½ Tsp of Calendula

2 cups of Olive, Almond, or Sunflower Oil

⅓ cup Beeswax

Essential Oil of Your Choice

Jar/Tin

Instructions

  1. Put the oil in a pan and set the stove on low; you want it warm but not simmering
  2. Add the herbs in.  If you have an empty tea bag or muslin bag to put them in, then do so as then you won’t have to strain the oil.
  3. Let this mixture sit for three hours on low heat
  4. Strain herbs out of oil (or remove the tea/muslin bag)
  5. Add beeswax to pot and add oil back in
  6. Wait for the wax to melt, then pour concoction into the jar or tin
  7. Add essential oil
  8. Let cool/harden (putting it into the fridge speeds up the process)
  9. Use on light cuts/scrapes or chapped skin/lips

~Elyce

A Witch’s Bookshelf

So for today I wanted to share with y’all some of the books on my witchcraft shelf.  A lot of them have been helpful through my craft (some of them not so much) and I really enjoyed them.  Please feel free to reblog and add your own favorites.

The Dream Dictionary From A to Z (Teresa Cheung): This one’s really helpful when you’re trying to figure out what your dreams mean.  It lets you look up dreams by either items or events in them and help figure out what they’re trying to tell you.

Grove Daughter Witchery-Practical Spellcraft (Bree NicGarran): Okay, this has to be my all time favorite book on this list.  NicGarran comes at the craft from a non-Wiccan perspective and her practical advice section covers a lot of common questions and concerns.  Her spells are also amazing and my copy is covered in little notes and bookmarks to come back to. (I would also highly recommend following her blog @breelandwalker)

The Kitchen Witch (Soraya): As someone who dabbles in kitchen witchery, this is a good beginning guide to the craft.  There’s a lot of really good recipes in here and it also goes into lotions and teas.  The one issue I have with this book is that the author tends to come off as a little elitist when it comes to cooking; everything has to be homemade down to the broth.  But if you can move past this, the recipes are really good.

Llewellyn’s Witches’ Spell-A-Day Almanac (Multiple authors): I really like these type of books.  It gives you a crap ton of spells to look through and pick and choose to use.  It can also be helpful when making your own spells because you can see what other people have done.

Wicca-A Guide for the Solitary Practitioner (Scott Cunningham): This was actually my first witchcraft book and I still refer to it from time to time (these blog posts for instance).  Honestly, any of Cunningham’s books are a wonderful suggestion and he takes the time to explain all the nuances of the craft.  While they are getting a little dated, I would always recommend Cunningham’s books for the new witch.

~Elyce

Way of Charging

This list is by no means meant to be a list of every way to charge things and some ways might not be things people commonly use. This list is meant to mention some older ways to charge things, while perhaps giving people a few new ways to charge things they might not have considered before.

Fire: Probably one of the oldest ways to charge an object, this method involves drawing the power of the flame into the object or sigil you’re using.  Light the candle, and hold the object above the flame (be careful not to catch it on fire).  Let the energy of the flame pass into the object to charge it.  If the object you’re using is flat or large, place the candle on top of it instead.

Technology: This is actually my favorite way to charge objects.  With this method, I tend to use my cell phone and sigils, but other pieces of technology/spells work as well.  Place the object, sigil, or spell components on top of your device when it’s low on battery, then put the object you’re planning on charging of top of that.  Plug your device in, and, as it draws energy to charge its battery, it’ll draw the energy through the spell and into the object you’re trying to charge.

Light: This can refer to sunlight, moonlight, starlight, or even a lamp you’re using if it’s raining outside.  Leave the object out in the light after setting your intent.  The light will charge the object with your intent, though how long you leave it out there will depend on the spell.  Be careful with this method however, as some stones bleach when left out in direct sunlight.

Intent: This is the easiest method of charging and perfect on the fly.  Take whatever object you’re charging and hold it in your hands.  Close your eyes and focus on your intent, then pour your energy into the object.  If it helps, imagine your energy as a specific color of light, depending on the spell you’re using, and add magic until the object’s energy glows with that color.

Breath: Similar to the above way of charging, this one uses your life energy to charge the object.  Since air and breathing is extremely important to living, this is a powerful way to add energy to the object.  Focus your intent and energy into your breath, the breathe out onto the object to charge it.

A Kiss: Kissing is a very intimate act and can be used to solidify the charge or finalize a spell.  Similar to using your breath, you focus your energy and intent into the kiss.  This actually works very well with remote spells, kissing a picture or representation of the object or person you’re working the spell for.  This method is not advisable for curses or malicious spells since kissing is generally positive in intent (there’s also the kiss of death, so don’t let me rain on your parade).

Crystals: The most important part of using this type of charging is making sure whatever crystal you’re using has been cleansed beforehand.  The last thing you want is left over energy muddling your spell.  Place your crystal(s) near or on the object you’re charging, then focus your intent through them.

Smoke: Also a way to cleanse an object, this involves using incense or herbs that have the same properties as your spell.  Light them on fire, then pass the object through the smoke.  If the object is too large or unable to be moved, waft the smoke over it.  Be careful when choosing your herbs, as some herbs are toxic when burned.

Higher Power: This method works even if you’re technically atheist, but believe in more powerful beings or energies than yourself. Potentially, you could ask a god, goddess, spirit, the Earth itself, or other being on a higher plane to help charge the object, be it through prayer, ritual, meditation, or some other way of calling for aid.

Water: Water is extremely powerful, whether it is storm water, moon water, or holy water.  Pick the type of water that works best for your spell, then place the object into the water.  If the item you’re using can’t be placed in water, such as paper or some stones that are water soluble, then use a bowl  or jar inside the bowl of water to put them in.  You can either leave the item in the water overnight to charge, or use your own energy to transfer the energy of the water into the object.

Long-Distance or Huge Object Charging: If you have something too big to charge, or something you want to charge but have to do so while you’re away, you can always try transferring energy. Basically, you can do this one of three ways: you can have a piece of that object with you to charge, you can have something similar to charge, or you can make or use something that symbolizes the real object. Essentially, you charge the object you have with you and imagine a tether between the object you have and the real thing. The more alike they are, the easier this should be. For instance, if you want to charge your entire car, you could try charging your keys or something else you associate with your car. This might work for a building, for instance. Or maybe for something you forgot at home when you go on vacation. If you don’t have anything similar to the object with you, you could always try drawing a picture of the object to charge, or try making something similar to the object out of clay, Play-Doh, or another medium.

Using Symbols: Symbols can also be used to charge objects, or even in place of them. For instance, if it’s raining outside but you need to charge something with sunlight, a lamp can work. Throughout human history, symbols have often been used to replace things. For instance, a yellow disc on a wall isn’t the sun, but it looks kind of like it and can represent it. A bit of seawater or a shell can symbolize the ocean and a feather can symbolize air. This very concept exists in language in the form of synecdoche and metonymy. Synecdoche is when you use a part of something or one piece of it to represent a whole thing, like using the word “bread” to stand for food in general. Bread isn’t all food, but it’s used to symbolize food. Metonymy is when you use a word associated with something to represent it. For instance, many people use the term “crown” to represent royalty. Like, “the crown ordered higher taxes”. The crown isn’t the king himself, or even a part of the king, but it is associated with royalty and used to represent them.

Rituals and Incantations:  Possibly the most drawn out way of charging an object, this method draws in the power of many different methods.  Locate a spell that has the same intent you wish to charge your item with.  Prepare your spell and the items need, then use the energy you summon with the spell or incantation to charge the item.

~Victoria and Elyce

Protection Spell

Since last night was a full moon (and had a comet, and a lunar eclipse), I spent my time reworking the protection spell around my apartment.  It’s a super easy (and cheap) spell to do so I thought I’d share it with you guys.  This spell is best done during the full moon, but can be done at any time.

You’ll need:

A Bowl

Water

Salt

Candle (White or Black)

Bay or Protection Incense

Protection Sigil (Optional)

Steps:

1. Put water in the bowl and light the candle.

2. Light the bay leaf or the incense with the candle (carefully, bay sparks and goes up really quickly).

3. As the candle burns, add the salt to the water.

4. Stir the water clockwise while focusing on your intent.  Draw the energy of the bay/incense and the candle into your spell to power it.

5. Now take the water and trace it along the windowsills in your house while chanting:

With the water
I create a barrier
So only good may enter

6. Each time you reach a door, trace the top of it with the water and then draw the sigil on the door as well.  Charge the sigil with your intent so that it adds its energy to the spell. If you aren’t using the sigil, just trace the entryways and charge the barrier itself.

7. When you reach the last door, place your hand over the sigil and visualize the protective energy forming a barrier around your house. If you are using just a barrier, and not a sigil, do the same thing for that.

8. And you’re done!  Every time you feel as if you need to revamp the spell, place your hand on that door and visualize the energy and the sigil reforming the barrier.

~Elyce

Witchy Clothes

When just starting out, a new witch can swiftly get bogged down with all the myriad items that different spell books talk about.  From wands, to herbs, to candles, the list quickly racks up in cost.  Yet, many of these things aren’t actually needed in order to start practicing.  One of these items are witchcraft robes.  A lot of witchcraft books often talk about wearing a robe or going skyclad when performing spells.  But the issue is, if one isn’t comfortable practicing skyclad, actual robes can get quite expensive (trust me, I gave in and bought one at a Celtic festival).  What a lot of these books don’t mention is there’s another alternative, having a special piece of normal clothing that you wear while performing spells.  I’m going to cover all three of these so you guys can see what works for you.

Skyclad-A lot of texts refer to the practice of performing magic skyclad.  For those who don’t know (I had to look it up when I started), skyclad is just a fancy way of saying naked.  A lot of covens perform their initiations skyclad. In fact, Raymond Buckland talks about it in The Complete Book of Witchcraft.  It’s also mentioned often in beauty spells and self love spells, allowing you to focus on your beauty without the coverings we normally put on.

Robes– The classic witch or wizard apparel, robes and cloaks capture the imagination.  They also quickly empty the wallet.  They can be really pretty, the ones I  have are purple with the triquetra on them, but by no means do you need any in order to actually practice.  If you’re crafty enough, you can actually make your own robes, adding a touch of personalization to your practice.

Ordinary Clothes– Probably the best bet for people who are still in the broom closet, this can be any article of clothing.  Personally I have an amazing grey sweater that I tend to wear, along with a necklace with my goddess’s symbol.  Some people have a special skirt, while others have an entire outfit.  In the end, all it needs to be is a something that’s special to you, it doesn’t need to have a meaning to anyone else.  If you want, you can even try coordinating colors to the specific spells you’re trying to do in order to draw more power into it.

~Elyce

The Wand Chooses the Witch

The wand is one of the most iconic items on a witch’s altar.  It represents either air or fire, depending on your associations and is a common altar tool.  Making your wand can actually be a really fun activity and help add a personal touch to your altar.  In this post I’m going to explain how to make a wand, but I’d like to make two points before I start.  First, you don’t need a wand in order to practice witchcraft.  It’s a nice aesthetic, but if you can’t make one or don’t want to, that’s not going to keep you from practicing.  Second, there is absolutely no shame in buying a wand that someone else made.  People who craft wands to sell are amazing artists and if you find one you like, go ahead and treat yourself.

In order to make a wand, the first thing you need is a stick.  Go out on a nature walk or around your house and find a stick that seems to call to you. It should be the same length as from tip of your middle finger to the inside of your elbow.  This is to more closely tune the wand with yourself since it draws upon your measurements.  You can choose a wood that has special meaning, but it doesn’t have to be.  For instance, I’m not sure what type of wood my wand is; I found it outside of my apartment and liked it.

Once you’ve found your stick, you’ll want to remove the bark and knobs on it.  I used a knife and sandpaper to do this, but it makes a mess so be careful.

Now comes the fun part.  Gather items that reflect your craft; for me it was feathers and beads for my spirit guide.  Use them to decorate your wand however you want to.  If you’re talented enough (I’m not) you can carve symbols into your wand or add crystals to the wood.  Remember, this wand is supposed to reflect you and your craft, so don’t compare it to others.

Congrats!  You now have your wand, which you can use to direct magic while working a spell.  Use it as an extension of your arm and intentions in order to add power to your spells.

~Elyce

Tarot: Wands

Like the suit of swords, different decks will associate the suit of wands with either fire or air.  As said before, I identify it with the element of fire, but you might associate it with air. The suit focuses on creativity and energy.

Ace of Wands

Upright: As all Aces represent beginnings, the Ace of Wands represents motivation and inspiration.  The potential to create is shown in this card, and if it appears in a reading, now’s the time to start your projects.

Reversed: If reversed, then the Ace of Wands represents a lack of motivation.  Something is delaying your creative process or you’re feeling weighed down.  Take a moment away from your projects, it may be exactly what you need.

Two of Wands

Upright: The Two of Wands represents discovery and progress.  When this card appears, it calls for you to start planning your future to ensure success.  Look for new experiences and new adventures, even outside of your comfort zone.

Reversed: When this card shows up reversed, it’s a sign that you should start organizing your long-term goals.  You might be feeling afraid of new adventures, or perhaps you’ve overlooked an important detail while traveling through life.

Three of Wands

Upright: After the foreplanning of the Two of Wands, the Three of Wands indicates that your plan is underway.  It’s a sign to expand your horizons and embrace change as you travel through life.  It’s time to think big and explore the world around you.  This card can also indicate travelling, a fun journey full of new experiences.

Reversed: When this card shows up reversed, it’s a sign that while you’ve started the journey, you’ve hit a snag in the road.  You might be having a hard time putting you plans into action.  In a relationship reading, this is a sign that something is standing in the way of your long-term plans together.  Whether this is a fundamental problem, like one of you wants kids and the other doesn’t, it’s something that needs to be discussed.

Four of Wands

Upright: This card showing up is always a good sign.  Symbolizing celebration, good news, and a stable home life, it’s a perfect time to rejoice.  It could also indicate that you’ve just reached a milestone in a project you’re working on.  It’s a representation of moving past obstacles and past mistakes from one stage to the next.

Reversed: This card symbolizes that there’s disharmony in your home life.  Either there are arguments and dissent in your house, or you’re getting caught up in other people’s problems.  Due to this, you’re starting to feel uncertain about your own relationships and who you can trust.  This card can also represent a period of transition where your life is feeling uncertain.

Five of Wands

Upright: As with the other fives in the deck, the Five of Wands represents conflict and change.  This conflict is keeping you from moving forward; everyone is arguing and no one is listening.  However, this conflict might not be completely bad, and approaching things in a different light may be just want you need to complete your project.  Take time to listen and make sure everyone’s thoughts are heard.

Reversed: When reversed, this card is a sign that you’re avoiding conflict.  You’re pushing tension to the side so you don’t have to deal with it.  It can also be a sign that you’ve worked through your anger, allowing your relationships to heal.

Six of Wands

Upright: After the conflict of the Five of Wands, this card represents success, victory, and public recognition.  You’ve harnessed your strengths and in doing so brought the project you were working on to completion.  This card is telling you to have faith in yourself and keep going, nothing can stop you when you put your mind to it.

Reversed: Negativity abounds when this card is reversed.  It’s a sign that you are doubting yourself, your abilities, and your potential.  You might have recently had a setback or fall from grace that is causing you to question yourself.  Or you might simply be trying to juggle too many things at once.  Whatever the reason is, this card is a sign to pick yourself up and keep going.

Seven of Wands

Upright: The Seven of Wands speaks of challenge, of hardship, but also of perseverance.  You’re about to hit a snag in your road, but you’re not about to let that stop you.  Rather than a fight to the top like in the Five of Wands, this is a fight to stay on top.  Don’t let others get you down, you’ve earned your success and no one can take it from you.

Reversed: If this card shows up reversed, it’s a sign that you’re feeling overwhelmed.  You may feel constantly judged by friends and family on how you live your life and you just want them to leave you alone.  But this card can also be a sign that you’re being too protective.  Those concerned friends might be onto something.

Eight of Wands

Upright: This card is a sign of clear skies after the struggles in the Seven of Wands.  High energy abounds in this card, giving you the momentum to keep pursuing your goal.  Rather than the simple raw energy of the Wands suit, the Eight of Wands is focused in its direction, allowing you to control where it’s spent.

Reversed: While the reversed Eight of Wands still indicates energy towards your goals, you are now met with a series of obstacles blocking your path.  On the other hand, this card may be a sign that you need to slow down in order to not trip or stumble.  Last thing you want to do is run headlong off of a cliff.

Nine of Wands

Upright: Keep your head up, you’re almost there!  That’s what this card says when you draw it in a reading.  You’ve been fighting to finish your goals for a while now and just when you thought you were done, you hit another obstacle.  A part of you just wants to give up, but this card is a sign not to.  Keep going, it’s all downhill from here.

Reversed: If this card shows up reversed, it’s a sign that you might be debating making a long-term commitment.  You’ve made boundaries for yourself, but they’re now trapping you inside them.  This card is a sign not to make assumptions or hasty decisions; think about things before going out to do them.

Ten of Wands

Upright: The ten is the end of the number cards and thus the Ten of Wands is the end of your journey.  Now able to reap the rewards, your struggles are over.  Yet the ten also warns that this victory comes with responsibilities.  While the initial journey is over, you still have to take care of the final product.

Reversed: Like the upright Ten of Wands, the reversed form indicates that you have taken on a burden.  However, while the upright is a burden that is needed, reversed shows that this burden is unnecessary for you to continue holding onto.  Now’s the time to let go so it stops holding you back.

Page of Wands

Upright: A free spirit with a passion for life, the Page of Wands is similar to the Fool.  When this card shows up it’s a sign that you are currently creatively restless.  It’s telling you that you need to be spontaneous, but not reckless, and follow your inspiration.

Reversed: This card reversed is a sign that while you recently started something new, it didn’t go the way you planned for it to go.  You might not be all that eager to start a new project for fear of it turning out the same way.  This card might also indicate an emotionally immature person, who undercuts your enthusiasm and inspiration.

Knight of Wands

Upright: Where the Page of Wands is the spark of inspiration, the Knight of Wands is the drive to follow that inspiration.  The card also holds a small warning that while you might want to rush into everything, remember to keep a realistic eye on your projects.  Don’t get swept away without a paddle to steer yourself.

Reversed: Delays make everyone mad and when this card shows up, you’re stuck and getting pissed.  You might have lost some personal power or being using it in a negative way.This card is also a sign of impulsiveness, impatience, and a lack of foresight.  Take a moment to slow down and reign in the horse.  It’ll do you a world of good.

Queen of Wands

Upright: This card represents a strong female leader who knows what she wants and how to get it.  Highly energetic and almost always busy, she actively inspires others.  A social butterfly, she’s the center of attention and loves being there for people.  Be careful though, the Queen of Wands risks burning herself if she stretches herself too far.

Reversed: When reversed, this card represents manipulation, selfishness, and resentment.  Either you or another is almost always in a bad mood and it’s dragging down those around you.  It may also indicate a loss of confidence in yourself and it’s calling for you to pick yourself back up.

King of Wands

Upright: A visionary and a strong leader, people naturally gravitate towards the King of Wands.  The card represents someone who, once they set a goal, strives towards it.  When this card appears, it’s a sign that there’s an opportunity in front of you, and now is the time to grab it.

Reversed: If reversed, this card is someone who is dominating and rash, making hasty decisions.  This person is ruthless and selfish when it comes to business, not caring about those they step on on their way to the top.  He can also be a sign that you set your goals too high and are now struggling to achieve them.

~Elyce