Friday, June 25, 2010

Brand Spanking New Handcrafted Occult Goodies

Freestanding taper candles, simple, elegant, and practical, from Azzerac's original mold. We have a lot of candles and other goodies jostling for their premiere at the moment, but I couldn't wait to start casting these!
A variation on the traditional pyramid, being taller and a little more narrow, (perfect for small altar space), these have a wide base that can fit an array of spell items underneath (name papers, money, photos etc. for attraction spells) and nice flat sides for inscribing symbols, runes, and sigils for spell casting.

The colors remind me of a forest in autumn, just before dawn. Knit with a blend of wool and soy ( awesomely versatile plant, isn't it?!) and adorned with a simple wooden button. I've finished another of these, in shades of pearl, and a few more are on their way (knitting as fast as I can!). This one is for sale in our Etsy shop.
Just as a heads up, I tend to flit from one project to the next, and rarely remake a finished piece- unless you ask nicely ;) Because everything in the shop is handcrafted, each item is unique, and recreations will often have differences, ones that often even surprise their creator!

Saved the best for last: from the anvil of Matthius, a gorgeous hand forged, spiral-handled athame and boline set. You can see this set, and more lovelies for sale, on his Craftsman's Corner.

Hope you all are well, and had a lovely Solstice!

Saturday, June 19, 2010

June Giveaway Winner

"Midsummer Eve" Edward Robert Hughes, 1908

The winner this months giveaway, an Attraction Spell set, is K(Banterings of a Basketcase). Email your shipping info to lodestoneandladysmantle[at] , and we'll have the box of goodies off to you on Monday!

Zahra Fajir is our runner up, and wins a bottle of our delicious Attraction oil.

Thank you all for entering, and keep your eyes peeled for next months giveaway.

Wishing you a beautiful, magical Summer Solstice,
-Carmin & Azzerac
Lodestone & Lady's Mantle

Saturday, June 12, 2010

I'm a Wrecky Master!

Detours on the Reiki Path.
Photo courtesy of Wikimedia Commons

Setting the scene: Today, I covered for a friend who wanted to play hooky and go to the Renn Faire ( a noble cause). The following conversation took place at his bookstore.

Woman rushes in, 5 minutes after closing.

Me: We're actually closed, but I can still ring you up if you're looking for something specific".

Woman: "I'm looking for Rac*mumblemuble *for Dummies".

Me: "All of our 'For Dummies' books are just over here".

5 minutes later

Woman: "I don't see it. Do you see it?"

Me: "I'm sorry, I didn't quite understand. What were you looking for?"

Woman: "Wrecky for Dummies."

Me: *long pause* "Do you mean Reiki?"

Woman: "Uh-huh. It's an exercise system" *mimes jumping-jacks*

Me: " It's actually a healing system... a specific type of energy work".

Woman: *Gazes intently at bookshelf* "Yeah. I'm thinking about teaching it"

You can't make this shit up.

- Carmin

Friday, June 4, 2010

Working With Spirits, Saints, Gods, and Incorporeal Beings

The other day, I briefly touched on working with spirits (in the case of graveyard dirt).
I wanted to go a bit more in-depth on working with spirits in general.
A bit of advice that doesn't often crop up in metaphysical literature is caution a practitioner should employ when working with incorporeal beings. If you were to believe half the crescent moon publications on the topic, gods, saints and spirits are just hanging around, eager to grant your wishes at the drop of a hat (or the burning of a candle of their favorite color).

A good rule of thumb is to compare your actions in the Other realm to those in the physical realm. If you were to pick a random person in the phone book and ask them to come fix your car, clean your gutters, help you find a job or a lover, most likely you would get, well, nothing. Maybe a derogatory commentary on your mental health and a string of curse words. This is the equivalent of picking a god or saint from a table of correspondence and invoking their aid. Sure, love or money may be their specialty, but that doesn't mean that they have any cause to help you in your endeavors.
It is infinitely better to build a relationship with a being before asking for favors. Even if your need does not fall into their field of operation, they will pull strings and try harder for you than a random stranger.
Just because I'm not a mechanic does not mean that I won't come to rescue a friend whose car has broken down on the highway.

How do you know which beings to build a working relationship with? Again, much like the mundane world. Never work with a god that you couldn't have a beer with. If they were wrapped in flesh, could the two of you hang out and get along? Do you have similar life experiences to them? Do you have a fellow feeling with them and enjoy their personality? Can you relate to the way they handle situations, if only in the sense of role model, not necessarily a personality duplicate of yourself?
Most importantly, can you be relied upon to honor them even when you aren't asking for favors (keeping an altar to them in good shape, clean, and fresh)? No one likes the friend that only calls when they have a problem. Don't be a user.

Remember that this is but one branch of magic, well worth experiencing, but not strictly necessary to the practice of casting spells. In magic, as in life, you can go it alone. Still, the ride is sweeter for some company along the way.


June Giveaway: Handcrafted Attraction Spell Set

Winner of the June giveaway will receive our full set of Attraction spell supplies!
Attraction is a classic Hoodoo blend that draws prosperity, love, luck, positive attention, and friends towards you like a magnet. This stuff is wonderfully potent, and smells delicious!

Included in the set:

*Attraction Oil: Handcrafted with all natural and organic herbs, roots, and therapeutic grade natural organic essential oils, and organic cold-pressed carrier oils. Every bottle contains real botanicals and minerals. 1/2 oz.

*Attraction Spell Powder: A wonderfully potent magical blend of organic herbs, roots, spices, and essential oils that is sure to become your new favorite!
Sprinkle it towards your doorway or business to draw money, love, or physical goods toward you. Add Attraction Powder to spell candles to increase their power, or sprinkle it in the shape of sigils and symbols on your altar to add an extra dimension to your workings. Add to mojo bags, name papers, honey jars, and spell packets. A must-have for your magical cabinet!
1/2 oz

*Attraction Spell Candle:Each candle contains organic herbs and roots, a piece of both pyrite and lodestone (after burning, add these to charm or mojo bags to give extra power to your spell), and is scented with pure, natural essential oils.
Measures 2" x 3.5"

*1 Large Lodestone: A powerful magical aid, well known in Hoodoo, Witchcraft, and Ceremonial Magic. These natural magnets are used in all spells aimed at drawing something towards you. Particularly effective in money and love magic, as the lodestone's natural inclination is to pull an object to its owner. When worn, they increase power and personal magnetism.

$40.00 retail value.

Runner-up will receive a bottle of our organic, all natural Attraction oil.

To enter, just leave a comment on this blog post, and we'll draw the winner (and runner-up) with a nifty random number generator on June 19th.


-Carmin & Azzerac

Huh. I Guess Some of This Does Sound Odd

Mausoleum door, in my favorite cemetery.

Running an occult shop is (mostly) like running any business. Many practitioners that get into this field are often in for a nasty shock when they realize that things like accounting crop up. Still, it's wonderfully rewarding and spiritually fulfilling to be immersed 24/7 in what you love.

So, being immersed, I sometimes forget that certain items that we offer may look and sound a bit strange to outsiders.
While digging through traffic statistics for the site (another un-fun but necessary part of business) I discovered that we had made the Regretsy Facebook page (Scroll down a bit, then a bit more). Ah... namely for Graveyard Dirt and Banishing powder.

I'm a huge believer in using and testing the magical tools in the shop before selling them instead of picking out ingredients from a table of correspondence, throwing them in a bowl, and glibly describing how they work. A regrettable number of sellers do this. On a quick side note: this is often why it may take us a bit longer than others to get new products added to the site. Multiple practitioners skilled in different Traditions or magical techniques test out our products, and give feedback. Depending on results, we may juggle ingredients, retest, juggle a bit more, then offer it for sale. Or we may scrap the project and dig deeper into research to find an older source or more accurate formula. I truly believe that this makes a huge difference in the final product and it's efficacy. Or it's just maddening anal-retentiveness. I prefer the former to the latter. ;)

What this is really leading up to: Our Graveyard Dirt is actually from a graveyard. I enjoy visiting with the dead, doing a bit of housework on neglected old plots, listening to this peaceful little bit of land out in the woods, repeating the familiar ritual, and being gifted with something special. Maybe it's a bit Creepy Suzy for outsiders, but I hope that you guys value the little extra steps taken to get you the real deal. While it is generally preferred to work with the dirt from a family member's grave*, for many (including yours truly) that just isn't possible. Plus, I got tired of sending about 10 emails a day with instructions on how to gather it. So here we are ;)

Oh, yes. The Banishing Powder. I had some seriously crap neighbors (and a pervy boss, ugh) my first semester in college. Sometimes a girl's gotta do what a girl's gotta do. This little can of whoopass has worked every time. It's the "I've tried playing nice with you, jackass, but no more" formula. Pretty inexpensive because the ingredients aren't terribly exotic, expensive, or need special ordering.

It's always interesting seeing another perspective, one that tumbles you out of your little world and makes you go "Huh. So that's what that looks like to other people. I'll be darned". Just wait 'till they get a look at the raccoon penis bones X-D

I hope that this was educational, and possibly, amusing ;P

* Rather than go off on another side note or tangent, there is a good solid reason or two behind using family dirt. First, more likely than not, your ancestors have your best interest in mind. They want you to succeed if for nothing else than the continuation of the family line and the feeding of their spirit. For another, you probably know the personality and attitude of your relatives, if only from stories. It's the difference between asking a stranger or a friend to hold your purse while you get your shoe tied, see?