Monday, July 23, 2007

Shannon's Fav Lughnasadh Crafts

The following are from Magickal Crafts by Kristen Madden & Liz Roberts

Vision Incense

To help your vision be clearer.

  • 1 tsp gum tragacanth or bum arabic
  • glass or bowl of warm water
  • wet cloth
  • 1 part mugwort (artemisia vulgaris)
  • 1 part cinnamon
  • 1 part sage
  • saltpeter (potassium nitrate)
  • 6 parts powdered sandalwood or cedarwood
  • 2 parts powdered benzoin
  • 1 part ground orris root
  • 6-9 drops essential oil (myrrh or sandalwood)
  • waxed paper
  • small kitchen scale
  • ceramic or stoneware bowl
  • food grinder
  • thin wooden skewers
  • Styrofoam square to hold skewers


  1. To make tragacanth gum glue, which you will leter need: Dissolve 1 tsp of the gum in a glass or bowl of the warm water. You may need to whick it a bit to dissolve it completely. {If you plan to make stick incense - which is more difficult than cones or blocks, thin the glue with a bit more water. For blocs or cones it should be almost dough like, but for sticks it should be a bit thinner} Cover with the wet cloth and set aside. If it thickens too much while sitting, just add a little bit more water. {Whatever you don't use will keep for a month}
  2. Prepare your incense Mixture. Grind together 1 part of each: mugwort, cinnamon, sage, to form a powder.
  3. In a bowl mix the wood, benzoin and irris root well. Add essential oils - Mix Well.
  4. Add 4-5 parts incense mixture to the oil mixture.
  5. Weigh and add 10% saltpeper. Do not add more than 10%. Mix Well.
  6. Addgum glue and mix well. Form into blocks or cones on waxed paper For sticks, dip skewers into teh mixture and stick them into syrofoam to dry. You can dip 4-6 times until they are as thick as you want. Allow to dry slightly between dippings.
  7. Allow to dry 2 - 7 days in a warm dry place until thoroughly dry.

Tree Spirit

I know being a Druid I'm most content when surrounded by nature - a forest, plain, whatever. We're all a little bit like "tree huggers". The following is a representation of the Green Man. Remember the Green Man is a tribute to the spirit in every tree or plant. At this time (Lughnassadh or Lammas) you may want to create a representation of the Green Man at his prime to grace your home through the darkest parts of the year to come. Or you can use the colors of harvest to celebrate the ripening and circle of life.


  • large pin or needle
  • polling pin
  • oven
  • baking tray
  • 26 gauge wire, 6 - 8 inches long
  • 2-oz packs of polymer clay: either plain colorless (if you wantt o paint) or in the following colors: chocolate brown, sand, pearl, black, green, leaf green
  • paints (optional)


  1. Mix one pack of chocoate brown clay with one pack of sand-colored clay. Kneed together until the clay is pliable and the two colors swirl together like marble
  2. Form half of the marbled brown clay mix into a flat 4-inch wide circle
  3. Shape a nose from some of the remaining clay and mold it into the center of the circle. I do this by rolling a ball about the size of a golf-ball then after placing it on the circle- I use my thumb and fore-finger to smooth out the nose.
  4. Roll out 2 pearl-colored balls each about the size of a marble
  5. Roll out 2 green-colored balls each about the size of a pea
  6. Roll out 2 black-colored balls each about 1/2 the size of a pea.
  7. Stack the green balls on the pearl balls. Then stack the black balls on the green. Firmly press these 2 stacks onto the 4 inch circle to form the eyes
  8. Shape the teeth by roling out a small sausage of pearl clay. THen flatten it a little before carving lines with the point of a pin to separate individual teeth. Press the teeth into the place of the mouth on the 4 inch circle.
  9. Use the remaining marbled clay to form the chin, lips, cheeks, eyelids and brow.
  10. Marble-mix 2 green colors together as you did the browns.
  11. Roll out the marbled green into a 1/8-inch-thick slab with a rolling pin.
  12. Use the needle or pin to cut out 12 - 12 leaf shapes
  13. Arrange the leaves around the face to form the Green Man's hair and beard. Then attatch each leaf by pressing some part of it firmly in to the face.
  14. I use the needle or pin to incise the veind and variation to each leaf
  15. Push a small hoop into the back (center, top) of the face
  16. Bake according tot he manufacturers instructions
  17. If painting allow the face to cool completely - make sure to schlack it good when finished.
  18. Hang on a wall or your favorite tree

No comments: