Archive for July, 2010
Brought by a dear friend from the Teide volcano – found dead of course :). The dragonfly is a totem of transformation and empowerment. It was too beautiful, too perfect, to pass the chance of taking this pic.
Sorry for the absence of posts this past days but I’ve been completely flooded with work. Our visiting friends left yesterday, and besides the usual shopkeeping we are working on moving my complete crafting studio to another room in the house; that means sorting and organizing a real TON of supplies, moving furniture around and making one hundred plans to make the new craftroom both useful and inspiring. My previous studio has been two years on the front room of the house, where the sun strikes mercilessly right after noon until 10 at night – with the temperatures we are having this summer, working here has become unbearable; the front room will be left as an office/living room, and that also will mean less time at the computer, as I won’t be interrupted by incoming mail while I work. I have been saying for three years that I want to make more time for dollmaking, and I never seem to make that happen – hopefully separating office and crafting room will help me achieve my goal. I love Witchcraft with every fiber of my being, but being a “pro” Witch – “pro” meaning working for others – has always been only a way of earning a living. Even if it’s a fulfilling and honest way of earning a living, and I know I will be doing this still for quite a few years to come, it’s not what I want to do for the rest of my life – dollmaking is.
But the muse of dollmaking is a demanding bitch. I have only been 10 years making dolls, which is actually a very short time for mastering any art career. I feel like now I am starting to achieve what I envision when I start a new doll. With each piece, the time of making it increases, as well as the complexity of the work itself. Right now I’m more or less in the middle of a 16 inches tall customized doll that, when finished, will have over 150 hours of work or more. I am very pleased with the results so far, but this is being the most challenging work I have ever done – and I think that is why I love it so much. When you sculpt a doll, there are no limits; but when you customize an already existing doll, you are given a challenge: make something beautiful out of this discarded toy. There is just as much magick on said challenge than in any spell – and actually I see it as one of the many forms of magick, as any doll maker knows that it is the doll herself whom asks for what she wants, instead of you, the human maker. There is a strong spiritual quality in that, in my opinion; as it happens with a talisman, a once inanimate object is filled with a part of the Great Spirit, a part that is able to have, in many ways, a life of its own – I’m asking the doll collectors out there: isn’t that true?
Even though I said I was retiring from Tarot and Spellwork for good, I am having so many requests that I have decided to put all services available again! The Tarot & Spellwork section of the shop has been reinstated so you can see the new services such as vigil candle work, custom mojo bags, and more we will be adding this week.
Right now I’m, as usual, up to my eyes with work. Besides the usual shopkeeping, I am working on a user guide for customers (more about that soon) and planning some improvements for the Witchcraft room, which needs a better place for readings – and that means I will soon have to face the DREADED task of making a website in Spanish…ugh.
African Wish Beans
There are so many uses for this that I could write a booklet about them! Here are some ideas:
- Place three in any money/job/business mojo bag;
- Place two in any love mojo bag;
- Throw three on your crossroads work to unblock the paths of your life;
- Give one as a gift to anyone who needs some extra luck;
- Throw five to the sea to ask for Yemaya’s favour;
- Throw six to a river to ask for Ochun’s favour;
Due to being organic natural beans, their cover skin may have small cracks produced during managing, packing and even on the mail trip. We do our best to choose the best, most perfect beans, but nature is nature! Any cracking or peeling on the cover is a natural process and does not affect the power of the beans as amulet at all. Mine are already completely peeled and working as good as ever!
Green Mojo Bag
Handmade mojo bags for all your money/job spells with drawstring made with black silk cord, measuring 6 x 8 cms – 3,5 x 2,5 inches. There may be small differences due to their handmade nature. As I do with all these small items, I have casted a blessing over the whole batch.
Mojo bags are also called gris-gris bags, mojo hands or nation sacks. The term “Mojo”, used in voodoo and hoodoo, means magick, luck and power, very much as the “Aché” word used in Santeria. Mojo bags can hold stones, roots, mixes of herbs, charms and mostly any magical item. They are usually hidden under the clothes or in another conspicuous place, as many traditions suggest that the bag is more powerful if nobody sees it. It is the use to add a small drop of your favourite magick oil regularly into the bag to increase its power. The more you use it, the better it gets! I have mojo bags that I have used for years and still work as new.
Handmade chalks that have been made using several Santeria waters, blessed water and our Hoodoo Powders to increase the power of Veve drawings, circle casting and any ritual/talismanic drawing needs. As you can see, Fernando has carved each one with a small crossed pattern. This is a perfect substitute for cascarilla, as it contains mainly the same elements (plus our special touch of course). Each chalk comes protected by a plastic tube – very useful for outdoors work to keep it from crushing to powder on the botton of the witchy bag (been there!).
Eight small (8×3 cms) 1 dollar banknotes, altered by me in Photoshop – we have changed Mr. Washington for an Eleggua traditional image :). These bills are blank on the back, so you can write your petition/sigil/veve, and printed on acid free recycled paper. Use them in your money mojo bags, offer them on money spells and/or Orisha day offerings, or simply keep them in your altar to represent wealth and abundance.
Frind all these items at The Hoodoo Shop at Etsy.
Yesterday, my witchy friend wanted to go around the Santeria shops in Santa Cruz as she was looking for some books and statues for her altar – I was too busy to go with her, but I gave her some money to purchase an Ekeko for me, a statue I’ve wanted to have for a long, long time – and she came back with this very handsome one :).
The Ekeko is the Tiwanaku/Tihuanaco (Bolivia) fertility god and the abundance god of Peru – a smiling man, wearing the traditional Peruvian poncho and hat, loaded with all kinds of stuff that are supposed to represent a person’s needs. His mouth is open so you can put a cigarrette on it and light it for Him, as tobacco is his favourite offering – though rum, tequila, sweets and other foods are offered to Him too. He is a protective, generous spirit and a wonderful business protection, so I made Him the centre figure of our new Wealth altar, which will be adorned more properly in the next days. Last night we only had time to set this for Him and welcome Him into our family.
I first met Ekeko many years ago, through a friend who was a Venezuelan Santeria practitioner (and one of the most important Santeria teachers I have ever had). If you have been reading this blog for a while, you probably already know how truly ecclectic Venezuelan Santeria is – ecclectic and practical as Hoodoo = my type of Santeria :). Besides his main altar, he had this small table with the Ekeko on it. Everyone who visited his altar room had left cigarrettes and money for the ekeko – so did I, making my petition; a few days later, I got what I had asked for, so I kept on bringing offering for Him and Ekeko and I made a great friendship. A few months later, my friend went through a strong personal crisis, dismantled his altar and gave the Ekeko away :( .
I don’t know what happened to me yesterday, and why did I make the 25€ splurge to send my friend to buy Him, but I stopped making to myself that kind of questions a long time ago. We three (me, Fernando and my witchy friend) gave tobacco, candies and money offerings to him, besides a candle anointed in Eleggua Oil and sprinkled with golden glitter, just to please him. And now you will ask – why the Gnomes??? People seem kind of surprised when I explain this, but Gnomes, Fairies and all the Little People are very important and deeply revered in Santeria. Gnomes are the owner of mines and buried treasures, thus related to all money and wealth Witchcraft – see our Gnome’s Gold Oil as an example. I had purchased this vintage Gnome set on Etsy several months ago, with the intention of putting them on our roof garden, but since the day they arrived I knew they wanted an altar of their own – they have been patiently waiting for the Ekeko since then…
Recently we foraged a copy of the first volume of History Of The Canary Islands, written by Joseph De Viera Y Clavijo in 1772. This copy was published in 1978 by Cupsa Editorial in Madrid, and contains several photographs that I thought you’d like to see – so, without further ado, here are some scans of said images:
Guanche Mummy, in a reproduction cave in the Archeological Museum of Santa Cruz De Tenerife. The Guanches did not bury their dead; the corpses would go through an embalming process, covered in red ochre and goat skins and left to dry on sacred caves, surrounded by offerings and gifts as in most of North African burial traditions.
Geria, island of Lanzarote – a Geria is a place for planting grapevines; what you see here are pot-like holes in the volcanic pumice ground, made to gather humidity and rain during the short rain season on the Eastern Islands. Despite growing in such a hard environment, Lanzarote’s wine is one of the most appreciated in Spain.
Valley of Ucanca with the Teide volcano on the back, Tenerife – the Teide, called Echeyde by the Guanches, is the main place of power in the islands. It was the home of Guayota, the volcano demon and representation of Evil, and it was the door to hell – many remains of offerings and rituals to Guayota have been found in the abundance of caves around the base of the volcano.
Peasant transporting food for camels, Lanzarote – with our geography and climate, camels and donkeys were used instead of horses, specially on the Eastern islands, where extensive desertic regions are used for agriculture. I have rid a camel once and it was quite scary!
Peasant in Muaique, Lanzarote, showing her handmade clay figures – this is definitely my favourite! Volcanic islands leave very little stone to carve besides obsidian, so there is a wide tradition of clay crafting; I am not sure if these figures are for ornamental or magickal use, as I have seen them being used for both.
All copyrights of this images belong to Cupsa Editorial and the Oronoz Photographic Archive. They are shown here under the fair use license, and only for demonstration and educational purposes. If you reblog or use this pictures, please give credit!
Magickal soaps are essential items in Hoodoo – they offer a quick way to give ourselves a certain energy that goes completely unnoticed to others. Just washing your hands with one of this soaps will give you that fast energy turn that sends luck your way – but since this soaps are completely natural, my recommendation is to use it on the whole body! The soap is 100% natural, unscented and very good for your skin, as it is made only with vegetal oil infusions and essential oils. Can be used on all types of skin and contains no chemicals at all. After trying it, you will never use those cheap commercial magickal soaps anymore! 1/2 ounce tablet, enough for many, many uses. Packaged in the traditional Santeria way, because we’re cool like that :).
India Rosa Soap – Love And Attraction
The India Rosa soap has been made using herbs and magickal oil made to attract love – use it before a date, before going out or whenever your love relationship is stagnant or in trouble.
La Madama Soap
La Madama is one of the most loved figures in North American Hoodoo; a kind and generous spirit, similar to Cuba’s La Negra Francisca, that helps spiritual workers to get good work, good customers and timely payments. With her broom, she dusts off negativity from your path – who could be a better help for us Etsy sellers?
Find them at The Hoodoo Shop at Etsy.