At Home With Rowena

Monday, October 05, 2009

Making a Pentacle from Nature

Many years ago when I lived in Morecambe I frequented a shop called Magenta. It was a typical 'witchy' shop selling crystals, incense, tarot cards, and all other magical effects. Elaine, whose shop it was, was very gifted at crafting her own goods, each with her unique designs. Just before we moved back down south, Elaine had shown me some leaves that she had preserved in a glycerine solution - mainly as an experiment to see how they turned out. I saw the finished results, and decided that my first project of that nature would be a pentacle. As you can see from the photo, I managed ok, and my pentacle has adorned my homes over the past ten years, and showed no sign of deterioration!
The 'recipe' below is for anyone who wishes to try it out for themselves.

Willow branch -  long enough for circle
Willow branches for fixing inside in a pentacle shape
Copper wire - thin - to hold willow circle together and to attach ivy at various points
Ivy from hedgerows - as long as you can get - discard any 'dodgy' leaves!
Solution: 1 part glycerin to 2 parts water

Mix the solution and put in a large deep container - an empty kitchen swing bin minus the lid is a good idea, and one I wish I'd thought of at the time! Use own judgement on how much you need - but you can always top it up - the ivy is quite thirsty and will soak up the mixture, hence preserving the leaves! I think I left the ivy in for about 2/3 days - you can tell when it's done as the leaves take on a waxy appearance.

Bend the willow into a circle and secure with the fine copper wire. Willow is ideal because it bends but doesn't break.

It's a bit of a pain getting the other willow branches into the pentacle shape and securing them, and to be honest I can't remember how I did it - suffice to say though, that if I managed it, anyone can do it!

Once you have your 'frame' in place it's just a matter of wrapping the ivy around and securing again with the copper wire, and voila!

My pentacle is the only project I ever undertook, but now I have more time on my hands (children at school, self finished university course!) I intend to try out some more designs. There's something very satisfying about making your own decorations, especially from nature's gifts. I'm not particularly gifted when it comes to crafts, but when it works it's great! At the moment I'm knitting a pair of socks! The pattern is on 2 needles, so is quite easy! Have finished the first one, and made a start on it's mate. Will post the evidence when complete!

Till next time,