Webs of Woven Words, Threads, Stitches and Enchantments

Thursday, August 3, 2017

The Pin Cushion As A Protection Charm

photo from: http://littlemoomoo.net/product/tomato-pin-cushion/

In the realm of the Kitchen Witch so many household items can be made into and used as charms. One such, with a history of use as a protection charm, is the tomato pin cushion. 

In the 14th and 15th centuries, pins and needles were very expensive and kept in needle or pin cases made from a variety of materials including silver, pot metals, ivory, and bone. Pin pillows, pyn pillows, or pin poppets, were the precursor of the pin cushion and came along in about the 18th century. These were made from different fabrics from plain to elaborate and included embroidery from simple to extensive. These were, in time, mounted on a variety of stands becoming decorative pieces for the home. Eventually, these pincushions became almost a status symbol and woman were sure to have at least one, but usually more. Today, antique pincushions and needle cases are highly collectible. 

Tomato pincushions came along due to a very sweet bit of folklore, in my opinion; in the Victorian age, when people moved into a new home, a tomato was placed on the mantel of the hearth. This was done to bring prosperity to the family and ward off evil spirits. Of course, tomatoes were not always available and they would rot, so people would create one of red fabric and embellish them with embroidery and other bits of fabric. Eventually they were used to hold pins and needles.

Today, many kitchen and stitching witches like to use this old folklore and create charms of protection. One can make the entire pincushion from scratch or buy one already made, available in any sewing or craft store. If making from scratch, one can stuff the cushion with a variety of items, herbs, bits of stones, ground wood from various trees, etc. When I buy one pre-made, I cleanse it very well and keep it for a full moon cycle before I begin enchanting it. Since I am not stuffing the actua cushion myself, I usually add a small bundle of protection herbs and other items including small stones and crystals, tie them up in a small square of black fabric with red yarn - or vice versa, whatever you are inspired to do. I also like to add pins arranged in symbols of protection or draw symbols and then place my pins. I also like to add various colored threads corresponding to intention and "attach" them by threading needles and placing in the pincushion, allowing the threads to float free.

Now where to place? Not everyone has a hearth. I live Toadstool Condo in South Florida, it didn't have a hearth, but... I purchased a ventless fireplace from Plow and Hearth some years ago and it is our hearth, so that's one place that the cushion rests on. If you don't have a hearth, your stove takes the place of it. I hang one over my stove too. A special narrow table set up to look like a hearth and blessed for this purpose would be another idea. I did this before I had my ventless fireplace and kept some of my collection of cauldrons around it and a variety of candles on it. A chiminea, small or large, with a candle or candles, is another option; there's nothing like a fireplace! 

Blessings nine!


Tuesday, March 28, 2017

To Call A Lover

Lucien Lévy-Dhurmer (French 1865 - 1953)

I love to collect spells, analyze them, adapt them. While not really one to encourage manipulative love magick - why would you want someone who doesn't want you without being forced? - I always find these types of spells interesting. They also inspire the kind of love magick that is beneficial, calling the right person for you.

I work in a metaphysical store and have access to many books, some of which come in on consignment. The book, "A Year In The Life Of A Faery Witch," just came in, so I was browsing through it. Interesting little read. Included was the following spell. 

To Call A Lover

When the moon is waxing, in Taurus or Libra, take three pinches
of Dragons' Blood and drop them on either burning coals or a charcoal,
calling your lover's name each time. He or she should appear within 24 hours.

from "A Year In The Life Of A Faery Witch"
by Sage Weston, Capall Bann Books, 2002

Yes, you could call back a lover you have had a disagreement with, you could also change this around and call the perfect lover for you, listing the qualities you desire in a man. 

I've seen many similar spells. Do they work? My husband will tell you, after almost 37 years of marriage, that I bewitched him and continue to do so? Did I? I'm not telling.

Blessings nine!   

Tuesday, March 7, 2017


Universal Love Healing Oracle Cards
by Toni Carmine Salerno

Because I work in a metaphysical store, I get to see a lot of tarot and oracle decks... in addition to all the crystals, candles, incense... need I go on? I order the books, decks, and other goodies so I get to read about the decks and research reviews. This deck, The Universal Love Healing Oracle, is not really something I thought would resonate with me, but the art was so beautiful I ordered a deck for myself. Was I ever wrong about the deck not resonating! From the first shuffle I knew there was something important for me. The first pull of the cards, a simple three card spread, assisted me in dealing with a painful issue which had left me feeling betrayed. My guidance was just perfect. Despite never being able hold a grudge for anything, I was holding on to the hurt and anger. With the guidance from these cards, I was able to work through it and let it go. Shuffling the cards to clear them after the reading, the main card in the spread jumped out again. 

Today, I pulled a card for my husband. Again, the cards addressed an issue for him that, while not any big deal, was something that would benefit him if he followed the guidance. I never know how he will react to this type of advice, but he found it helpful and thought it was "on the mark" so to speak.

Shuffling again, I pulled a card for myself, Creativity. I recently have begun painting and stitching again after a creative dry spell. This card advises that an aura of creativity surrounds me and Life's universal force fills my soul seeking expression through me. I need to open my heart, let go of self-judgement and doubt, and let the Divine flow through me. Expressing my emotions through my creativity will allow me to be true to myself, love unconditionally, and know my metaphoric voice is being heard. My creativity, anyone's creativity, is much more than the product produced, whatever it may be - art, embroidery, music, dance, poetry, etc. It occurred to me that perhaps this wasn't a message just for me, perhaps it was meant for all of us. This expression of the Goddess/Divine through creativity leads me, and all of us, to heal.  

Sounds very new age for a witch who practices as I do, I thought... at first. A little cogitating brought it all together for me. Divine love is truly the answer to all things. Love itself is the answer for all of us if we truly wish to heal and live life fulfilled on all levels.

My practice has been undergoing some changes, shifting, and evolving. I encounter many practitioners who are experiencing similar changes. It is good to discuss, exchange ideas, and receive and give validation. The world is a wild place right now, we need to work toward healing as much as we can. It begins with our own healing and then radiates out toward the rest of the world. I felt the need to share all this and so I do.

In Hekate's name, blessings nine!

Monday, January 30, 2017

The Stirring of the Seed

artist unknown

This painting represents the personification of The Stirring of the Seed, my celebration instead of Imbolc or Candlemas. My tradition doesn't resonate with these common Pagan sabbaths, so instead I celebrate something a little different. Unfortunately, the two posts where I found this beautiful image did not have an artist credit, nor could they find one. I wish I could find the artist. If anyone knows or finds it, please do share.

The Stirring of the Seed represents the coldest time of the year and the deepest withdrawal and reflection. It is the time of building our restorative energies, our self-healing at its most intense, and the strengthening of our energies to manifest and live fully.

In this painting, I see that the woman is within her power animal/totem, surrounded by other power animal spirits who assist her. Roots are, based on my intuition and experience, our deepest connection to earth, the stabilizing force of our physical lives, the richest nourishment for the lower chakras. These roots, in the painting, surround the woman. She sleeps, but is connected to deep earth, her animal and plant guides. Soon she will begin the her ascent to the light of day and evolve into the fecund earth, blossoming forth, giving of her fruit. For now, she sleeps still, but lightly, stirring slowly and gently, coming back to being.

Blessings bright and golden!