When I first started practicing, I didn't have the money for all the things listed in the books. to make matters worse, I live in a rural area and some things are often hard to find. I came up with my own way of making things, some ideas were inspired by books, some by pure desperation *S* The funny thing is, now that I could get most anything I want, I wouldn't trade my old homemade stuff for the world! Here are a few tips if you are having a hard time finding what you need, or can't afford to buy it. always be creative and remember, where there's a will, there IS a way. Elaborate tools do not make any difference either way in ritual. Things you make yourself are actually better as they are truly yours. Using something you are comfortable with is far more important than how fancy it is or how much you paid for it.

Wand: Wands are easy to make. You can make one of wood by cutting part of a tree limb, provided that you ask permission of the tree. Do this by mentally asking the tree if you make take some of itís wood. If you get a good feeling, then it is usually OK. If you get a bad feeling or you feel uncomfortable, try another tree. When you find one that you feel is acceptable, feel the branches until you find one that seems right. DO NOT take any more than you need. 8-12 inches is about right. You donít want it so long that itís hard to work with. It should be thick enough to be durable, too thin might break if you accidentally hit it up against something,, but it should be thin enough to hold comfortably. Keep all these things in mind when you are selecting the wood. The wood does not need to be perfectly straight. Leave a gift to thank the tree for the wood. You could leave ginger, milk and honey, or even a bit of fertilizer at the base of the tree.
Sand the outside of the wand until itís smooth, and decorate it anyway you want.

Cords: You can make cords using cotton embroidery floss. Embroidery floss comes in most any color you could want and it is very inexpensive, you can find it in craft and fabric stores and in the craft section of many department stores.. Read the sleeve to make sure it is cotton.

Cut three equal lengths of embroidery floss and tie together at one end. braid them until you get to the other end and tie it. Keep in mind that the cord will be shorter after you braid it so you will need to use threads that are a bit longer than the length of cord you need.

Candles: Candles usually are not a problem except for Black, Gold and Silver. Black are usually available about a month before Samhain, and gold and silver are usually easy to get the month before Yule/Xmas. I would suggest stocking up at those times. If you can't find the color you need, you can always use plain white.

Athame: Any knife will work so long it has not been previously owned. Most athames have black handles but if you cant find one you like with a black handle you can always paint it. You also need to check the laws in your area about the legal length. a two or three inch athame is usually OK, but check anyway just to be sure.

Sword: Actually, you do not need a full length sword. a letter opener that looks like a sword will work.

Goblet: You can use a glass from the grocery store.

Herbs: Look in health food stores, Natural foods Markets, the spice section of the Grocery store. or better yet, grow your own

Oil: Most People use essential oils, but here is a shortcut that works: , infuse the herbs for the type of oil you want in olive oil for two weeks. shake the jar or bottle every day. strain the oil and discard the herbs. Put the oil in a clean bottle and store in a dark place. For more detailed instructions and a few recipes, see my oils page.

Pentacle: Get a wooden disc from a craft or hobby shop. You can paint , burn, or carve the pentacle in the wood.

Stones: These can be tricky if you don't have a rock and crystal shop in your area. If this is the case, you micght want to consider making a trip to a park or forest. In some cases specific stones are required for spells and these might be impossible to find in some areas (Believe me, I know!) But for other things, only certain color stones are needed. Stones are used according to the energy they possess, and usually, certain color stones have certain energies, but this is not always the case. . When you are looking for stones, it is important to choose stones that seem to "call" to you, ones that you are drawn to. Stones that are not right for you will be easily lost, or worse, broken. It is difficult to explain, but if you keep an open mind, you will know when you have found the right stones. This is true whether you are buying them from a crystal shop or finding them yourself.

These are just ideas, be creative. I personally think that things you make yourself are better than things you buy. If all else fails, you can get supplies by mail order. Magick cauldron is a good supply store with an online catalog. .

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