Binding

Beth:

Another happy customer–yay!!! It means so much to me to see these kinds of posts; this is why I do what I do!

Originally posted on A Matter of Faith:

My commissioned cord from FiberWytch arrived the other day. It made me cry it was so beautiful. And so perfect. It’s EXACTLY the way I envisioned it. I cannot gush enough about it. Thank you so much Beth! Check out her shop!

The photo doesn’t do it justice, I’m going to try to get some better shots later.

Himself is pleased. So is Odin.

All is right with the world.

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Hamingja: Essence of Luck and Resiliency | Wandering Woman Wondering

Luck isn’t gone when trouble comes our way. It’s when things get rough that our luck is tested. Most folks are made of fancy stuff when times are good. It’s when times are bad that we see most fully what destiny and fate have woven into a person’s soul. When life delivers hashtags of failure, pain, and disappointment, luck is still there in the form of resilience. Resilience – luck’s shadow – is a person’s ability to regroup/take stock and bounce back in times of adversity. Luck’s Shadow demands that we make good use of even the most meager resources. It involves learning new skills where old one’s have failed; finding new supporters where old one’s have chosen other champions; and, paying attention and learning even/especially when in the wrong place at the wrong time. Resilience does not always demand a smile and a good attitude, but it does demand self-awareness, self-knowledge, and a willingness to bend with life’s changing winds.

An insightful post that defines resiliency (our ability to pull through when times are tough) as the shadow or dark side of luck, just as much a sign of powerful hamingja (luck, soul strength) as the more commonly known symptoms of being in the right place at the right time or having everything effortlessly go our way. As someone who’s had (more than) her share of troubles, I really needed to read this. Jo always says my superpower is that I’m always doing something, and when I suffer a setback, I just pick myself right back up and try something else. I’m incredibly stubborn, and no matter the obstacles I don’t give up–not ever. This, I feel, is more akin to Odin’s particular brand of luck (the luck I share with Him by sharing His Wyrd, through our Marriage) than the effortless success kind; shadow luck is a much better fit for Him.

Anyway, go and read the entire post at Wandering Woman Wondering; it’s well worth it!

Some changes coming to FiberWytch, plus available items in the store

Aside from the acquisitions outing Jo and I made to Eugene Textile Center on Saturday, I spent the weekend sewing charms on cords and photographing cords, getting custom orders ready and working on the next update for the store.  (Which should hopefully be ready to go later this week; I have two seasonal cord designs  for Samhain and a couple of Freyja cords.  The Odin cords have been delayed slightly because one of the charms for them–a handmade one–isn’t ready yet.)

I don’t think I went into this here (only on my Facebook page), but at this point FiberWytch is at the point where I literally cannot do any more work than I’m already doing and continue to work 25 hours per week at my office job–but unfortunately, I am NOT yet at the point where I can afford to quit said office job.  (As most of the money I make from the store goes back into the store.) This means two things: 1) I need help (hence hiring Jo as my unpaid-for-now assistant, and 2) I need to find ways of streamlining my work (you’ll be hearing more on this after Yule) as well as begin offering more items than just the ritual cords and yarn.  The store needs more diversity, and I need more witchy projects to dip my fingers into–and I’m hoping that with Jo’s help I’ll be able to find the time for these other projects: magical and deity oils, candles, incense, bath soaks, witches’ ladders, prayer beads, jewelry,  and next year, hopefully, soap.  (Ultimately, I plan to turn FiberWytch into a full-service–and very stylish–artisan occult shop.) However, one of my problems is that I keep getting bogged down and forgetting to think outside the fiber box, to which end Jo made me this sign for the fridge:

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The funny part? When I first saw the sign I thought the header said: “There is more than just [one] fiber.” Which of course proves my need for the sign.

In the meantime, while I’m getting custom orders out the door and doing all of the photo editing and posting for the next shop update (you guys would not believe how long this stuff takes–almost as long, if not longer, than making the items in the first place), I wanted to remind everyone of a few cords still available in the shop, since the Internet has a memory even shorter than mine.  I’m not (repeat, NOT; I am not shy about promoting myself so much as I forget to do it as often as I should, because I always have too damned much to do) going to apologize for spamming my own blog, as I really need the sales (need more supplies for all of those new projects!) and don’t really have time to set up a blog especially for the store. In fact, it’s probably the case that I don’t do enough of this kind of self-promotion here. Besides, these are all fabulous cords just waiting to fill someone’s hands with their amazing energies and abundant blessings; they want to be loved and shouldn’t be just waiting around in my fiber closet.

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I actually have a Hela cord left, believe it or not! This is very special ritual cord designed to honor the Norse goddess Hela, daughter of Loki and Queen of the underworld realm of the dead. A shadowy goddess who sometimes appears as half black and half white, or half dead and half living, Hela offers comfort, rest and protection to the souls of the dead until the time comes for them to be reborn or to move on to another state of being. Perfect for the Samhain season, for hedgecrossers, seidhr folk, or anyone who dwells on the darker side of the magical spectrum.

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Even more incredibly, there are a couple of Dark Moon cords (in two different styles) still available! These usually go right away, so I’m surprised to find them still there.  The dark moon is a psychically heavy time of the month; the veil between the worlds is thin, and contact with the dead and otherworldly beings becomes easier. It is a time for deep reflection, banishing and binding magic, protecting secrets, warding, seeking justice, and working to rid yourself of bad habits (or of anything else that needs to go). The dark moon is sacred to gods who know Their way in the dark, such as Odin, Hela, Hades, Nepthys, and Hekate, as well as to animals traditionally associated with witches, such as ravens, black cats, and bats.  Needless to say, there are also perfect cords for this time of year, and their usefulness extends far past the Dark Moon itself.

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I still have all four elemental cords (Earth, Air, Fire, and Water), including this one for Water: From gentle rain, sacred wells, and crystalline lakes to raging hurricanes and the vastness of the oceans, the power of Water brings us compassion, love, cleansing, healing, and understanding of our emotions. Elemental Earth can empower magick for divination, dreamwork, astral travel, healing, love, and fertility.  Deities associated with elemental Water include Poseidon, Njord, Manannan mac Lir, and Yemaya, and the Archangel Gabriel. Animals include dolphins, otters, fish, and all aquatic creatures.  In the Wheel of the Year, autumn is the season of the West, corresponding to elemental Water, so this would be the perfect time to add this cord to your collection.

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There are also cords for the New Moon (pictured above) and the Full Moon. The new moon–when the moon first appears in the sky, a slim sliver of light–is the time for new beginnings, new projects, for planting the seeds of things you would like to manifest. It is the perfect time to set your intentions for what you would like to accomplish in the month ahead. New moon magic is especially linked with love spells, healing, new employment, self improvement, new dwellings, initiations, networking, and purification.

All of my ritual cords are made entirely by hand in tiny batches from locally sourced wool top and locks, hand dyed and hand blended with sparkly bits, silk, locks, and other goodies to add texture and pops of color. This magickal mixture is then spun with intent and healing Reiki energy, blessed, and charged with energies specific to the cord in question.  The magick is sealed with a rinse in specially selected essential oils, with gemstones also added to the rinse water.

You can take a look at all of my currently available cords here.

Acquisition Field Trip!

Hi everyone, Jo here. Beth is busy in the kitchen, tending dye pots, and I figured this was a great time to sneak in here, er help myself, er, that is, make my official “assistant” debut on the blog. For those of you not following along over at Fiberwytch’s FB page: Beth has graciously accepted my offer to help out with the non fiber- and yarn-making aspects of running Fiberwytch — notably, I’m going to be helping out with customer service, much of the social media, and a bit of the order organization and planning work. (Don’t worry; the blog here is still her baby, though I will be popping in as guest blogger F’wytchlet from time to time, just to help out. See? I’m helping!)

Today Beth and I had a rare Saturday off together, and it just so happened to coincide with a multiple estate sale at one of our local gems, Eugene Textile Center. Estate sales are truly too good to pass up, and with the bus route offering nearly door-to-door service, off we went! I thought I’d share some photos with Beth’s readers so that we could take you along with us.

Local Gem!

Local Gem!

Yarn cones -- maybe not as good as ice cream cones, but darn close!

Yarn cones — maybe not as good as ice cream cones, but darn close! (see what I did there?)

Shop cat! A sure sign of fine quality.

Shop cat! A sure sign of fine quality.

The Haul. Two bags full of stuff: $30. I've bought single skeins of yarn for that much.

The Haul. Two bags full of stuff: $30. I’ve bought single skeins of yarn for that much.

Salt and Pepper Sheep. Why? Because, salt and pepper sheep.

Salt and Pepper Sheep. Why? Because, salt and pepper sheep.

“Seiðr as shamanistic practice: reconstituting a tradition of ambiguity”; Jenny Blain | Freya: The Gold Thread

The Saga of Eirik the Red describes a seeress, who sat in a specially prepared High Seat to foretell events for a Greenland community of 1000 years ago. She used a technique known as seiðr, calling on ‘powers’ to help her see further. Seiðr magic was chiefly performed by women, with male practitioners disparaged as ‘ergi’. Today members of reconstructionist ‘heathen’ communities in North America are drawing on such accounts in establishing seiðr as shamanistic practice, involving trance or shapeshifting, for foretelling and healing. This article examines constructions and contestations of seiðr within communities of past and present. -Abstract of “Seiðr as shamanistic practice: reconstituting a tradition of ambiguity”; Jenny Blain, 1999 via Freya: The Gold Thread

For those curious about seidhr, I would highly recommend reading the paper Cara Freyasdaughter links to here.  Jenny Blain also has a book, Nine Worlds of Seið Magic,  which is one of the first sources I read on seidhr, back when I was a baby heathen.  It’s highly recommended, and you can still find it on Amazon–but it’s gotten a bit pricey these days, I see.

The encroaching dark

I’ve felt it building for the past few weeks–ever since the revelation that the Hunt would be riding early this year, really, but especially in the past few days. A tide of darkness, swelling as it approaches, gradually picking up momentum. It has been hitting me as sorrow, as an overwhelming sadness that catches me with sudden swallowed tears at inconvenient moments, even as I sit as my desk at work. Whispers of death in the air, of grief, of loss. I think of my dog, who is dying of congestive hearth failure, but am Told it isn’t him, he isn’t behind this feeling, it isn’t coming for him yet.

“Look behind the sorrow,” He says. “There is more in the darkness than that.” And I know it, there is the dark glee and the wildness, the whirling madness, the shivers of delight—but the sorrow is like a leaden coating for them all, like the overcoat they wear and also what lies at the heart of them, the masks worn by death and the dead. The inexorable sense of loss and grief that is at the heart of the dark spreads out across the landscape like a dark blanket; death is coming, the horde is riding—but why not make a party of it too, since death is coming for us all, in the end (for those of us who are mortal, anyway). It may be a couple of years away, or decades—who can really say? Why not have a drink, a dance, a song, a party with the tribe of monsters who call Themselves yours?

“The trick,” He says, “is to embrace the dark, to not flinch from it, to not run from it—because you are surrounded by predators, and if you run, they will give chase. It’s what predators do. The trick is to recognize that the dark is your Court, your Kin, your King. This is what we are, when all the masks are stripped away. Yes,” He adds with a smirk, “you have a monster in your kitchen.”

Autumn Yggdrasil Ritual Cords (new at FiberWytch on Etsy)

You might think that the Great Tree, being eternal, would not have its seasonal cycles of life and death like any other tree, but you’d be wrong. The World Tree lives, and all things that live have their seasons, their pattern of ebb and flow. In the winter, the Tree sometime resembles an ancient yew, with dark green needles and blood-red berries, and other times a skeletal ash, its bony black fingers clawing at a white sky. In the spring it bursts into life, with fresh green leaves and abundant flowers, and in the summer it bears a fruit sweet enough to make the gods weep.

But in the autumn, ahh, the autumn is best of all, for as the air grows crisp and chill and the nights long, the Tree’s leaves turn brilliant gold, pumpkin orange, and shameless scarlet—all of the colors that grace Midgard’s trees in autumn, only magnified and combined into one spectacular display. For as the time of the Wild Hunt draws near, and all of the ghastly spirits of Odin’s army of the dead prepare to ride forth, Yggdrasil itself—Mother of Trees, Steed of the Terrible One—dons its own mask for the festivities, becoming a bright beacon to light the way home for all who would venture out into the dark.

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Hand dyed domestic Cheviot top, carded with hand dyed silk, locally sourced kid Mohair, and lots of sparkle, then spun with intent and healing Reiki energy and consecrated with the energies of the Great Tree that binds and connects the worlds. The result is a colorful, vibrant, alluring cord in an autumn palette of warm golds, oranges, reds, and greens, spicy cinnamon and bronze, and crisp brown.

Please note: I have tried to depict the colors as accurately as possible, but every monitor shows color a bit differently. Since these are made in tiny batches by hand, the cord you receive may not be identical to the photographs, but it will be very close. Please allow for slight variations!

Rinsed with mugwort, birch bark and yew needles, petrified wood, and essential oils of cinnamon bark, allspice, nutmeg, clove, cypress, juniper, and fir needle (for the blessings of nine sacred trees, in all, in addition to the visionary properties of mugwort). The cord ends are adorned with three charms: a chunk of petrified wood, a stylized tree medallion in antiqued silvertone, and an antiqued silvertone squirrel, to be your journeying companion up and down the Tree.

You can use this cord:

- To adorn a northern tradition or shamanic altar
– For grounding and shielding
– For any ritual or spell having to do with astral travel, shamanic journeying, otherworldly communication, oracular vision, or petitioning the gods of the north
– To contact the northern gods, giants, elves, or dwarves in meditation or journeying
– As a dedication cord to any of the northern (aka heathen) gods
– For the altar of a northern goddess or god
– For a handfasting cord
– As a necklace lariat, belt, or hair tie to wear to a rite in honor of a northern god or goddess
– For knot spell work
– To spread on the floor to mark out your ritual circle for astral travel or shamanic journeying work
– To wear on any occasion when you want to around yourself with the protection of the northern gods or anchor yourself to the World Tree

I only have three of these at the moment, so grab yours at FiberWytch before they’re gone!

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