Monday, August 09, 2010

Herbs, Magic and Wildcrafting

I think I've made a nice start to the Knickertwist's wildcrafting section. I haven't really bothered with the medicinal uses of these herbs, focusing mainly on the folklore and magical properties. So far I've got Chicory, Dandelion, Goldenrod, Soapwort, Queen Anne's Lace, and Yarrow, with plans to add more as time goes on.

The internet can be a good resource but there is a lot of silly misinformation out there. It's sort of like that telephone game where people repeat things and the message gets all messed up. If you are interested in herbs and herbalism consider investing in some great books. These books are my absolute favourite herbal resources:

Culpeper's Complete Herbal, published 1653, by Nicholas Culpeper,

A Modern Herbal, published 1931, by Mrs. M. Grieve,

Rodale's Illustrated Encycopedia of Herbs, published 1987

Magically speaking the most popular and useful book on herbs is probably Cunningham's Encyclopedia of Magical Herbs by Scott Cunningham.

Enjoy and be safe!

Sunday, August 08, 2010

Wildcrafting ~ Queen Anne's Lace

I've just finished my page on Queen Anne's Lace... the original carrot!

What a surprisingly fascinating plant.

The most popular story surrounding this plant is that it is named after Queen Anne who pricked her finger while making some fine lace, staining the white with a tiny drop of red blood. Very often a purple or red 'drop' representing the blood on the lace can be seen in the centre of the flower.

Also known as 'Wild Carrot', this plant was gathered by Scottish women on the Sunday preceding St. Michael's Day... Carrot Sunday. The women would sing special songs or 'runes' while gathering....

Cleft fruitful, fruitful, fruitful,
Joy of carrots surpassing upon me,
Michael the brave endowing me,
Bride the fair be aiding me.

Forked roots were highly prized and considered very lucky.

The wild carrots were washed and tied in bundles with three-ply red string, then kept in sand until St. Michael's feast day (September 29th). On that day the carrots are given with wishes of plenty, prosperity and fertility and were highly prized as gifts.

Magically speaking, Queen Anne's Lace was predominantly used in fertility and virility spells and rituals.

You might also be interested to know ....
~ The leaves contain porphyrins, which stimulate the pituitary gland and lead to the release of increased levels of sex hormones.
~ The seeds have been used as a 'morning after' treatment to prevent pregnancy.
~ Considered an excellent cleansing herb for the body.


Friday, August 06, 2010


I've been a busy bee lately, staying up far past my bedtime to work on my site. I really like how it is coming along but I'm a bit concerned that the witchery part is is dire need of some attention.

While walking to our mailbox I often admire the wildflowers that grow along the side of the road. I'm sure most people over look these beauties, which is an absolute shame.

That's Queen Ann's Lace, Soapwort, Yarrow, Goldenrod and Chicory.

And so, I'm working on a section dedicated to those pretty weeds and the magic that can be performed with them. Sure, exotic herbs and spices are dandy, but let's not overlook those bits of magic mother nature leaves on our doorsteps.

Wednesday, August 04, 2010

For you...

because I appreciate every kind word and sweet comment.
Make your own Fairy Godmother and Free Mess Making Images
Thanks for being nice :)


Tuesday, August 03, 2010

And another....

Holy smokes I'm a chatty thing today!

Here's another winged gal... this one is a Harvest Faerie. Overall size 7.25" x 5"

The harvest faerie is a rather rare sight. They flutter about, busy as can be, ensuring that everything runs smoothly as autumn approaches. They are especially fond of large piles of leaves and tangles of squash vines. Although usually quite focused on her tasks, when the wind blows freshly raked leaves you can bet that a harvest faerie and the wind have decided to partake in some mischief.

Paper, paint, ribbon, buttons, findings, beads, lace, found feather in a vintage Italian frame.

I have one last framed faerie godmother in the works and I can't wait to see her finished. Hopefully she cooperates and will turn out as lovely as she is in my head :)

A quick fairy godmother post....

It's sort of amazing how many flying things are yellow, black and white. Bees, wasps, butterflies, birds... 

Ava, is their godmother (specializing in bees and wasps). She makes sure to keep them busy and fluttering about. While the workers are away she gossips with the Queen's while eating jam covered bread crumbs, and sipping on tea.

Beans & Burns

It really does amaze me that you stick a seed in the ground and in no time at all you've got dinner!

I think that I've mentioned before that we aren't so much into ritual, preferring to quietly celebrate our mish mash of pagan ways, so these wee pickings right around Lammas were a perfect reminder of the arrival of the harvests. Can you believe that these were planted less than 3 months ago?

We made a trip over to Presquile Provincial Park for a hike along their new wetland boardwalk. I was disappointed that I didn't see any frogs but there were some fantastic dragon flies with striped wings that dashed about everywhere. The trail also leads through some woods which are of the frightening storybook variety and filled with inspiring things like this fallen tree which I am certain is actually a portal into another realm :)

Another day trip over to Sandbanks Provincial park rounded out the weekend. We picnicked on the beach an swam in the lake and had a pretty nice day. On the way home however I realized I had enjoyed the sun a bit too much and have turned a lovely shade of magenta. I think it will have to be an inside day today.