Botanicals

Introducing Smoulder Sticks

We have decided to rename our handcrafted herb bundles that we have so far been referring to as ‘smudge sticks’.

We have spent a lot of time thinking about this and wanted to give some background as to why we have come to this decision.

As we have discussed in previous posts, burning plants to release an aromatic, beneficial smoke has been carried out across cultures for thousands of years. It would have been the earliest form of aromatherapy with methods and motivations for use varying across the world.

The term ‘smudging’ refers to a specific Indigenous American tradition, where herbs particularly Sage and Cedar are used in sacred cleansing ceremonies. In recent decades, this term has been adopted in Western spirituality, and the burning of Sage in particular has gained popularity.

This increase in popularity, has also seen an increase in the trade of sacred herbs, such as White Sage and Palo Santo, both of which have become over harvested and are now considered to be endangered.

Offering people sustainable plant alternatives is extremely important to us, as is sharing the benefits of connecting with plants on a daily basis. We only ever use herbs that we have grown ourselves organically or gathered from the wild in a responsible way. With so much wildlife depending on our plants, we work seasonally, using plants readily abundant during that season and follow responsible foraging guidelines.

We have been inspired by what we have learned about Smudging ceremonies, as well as other ancient burning practices and when originally naming our bundles ‘smudge sticks’ did so in a respectful way, to honour this sacred practice. However the more we have learned about the specific nature of a smudging ceremony and the increase in the exploitation of these sacred herbs, the more we felt ready to create a new name for our own herb bundles.

We have loved finding out about the variety of ways people have been using our sticks in their own lives. Sometimes for cleansing, often during mindfulness and meditation practices to help calm the mind, and some people choosing not to burn them at all, enjoying the energy of the plants in a different way.

After some thought we settled with the name ‘smoulder’ stick, meaning ‘to burn slowly with smoke but no fire’. It feels as though this word describes its action so well. So in celebration of our new name, we will be listing some lovely limited edition smoulder sticks, and how you choose to work with them is completely up to you!

Botanicals

Yarrow and Rose bud Smudge Sticks

Yarrow feels especially abundant this year. This delicate yet mighty wildflower has been used extensively in herbal medicine due to its wealth of therapeutic properties. Ruled by Venus, Yarrow has also long been entwined with myth and magic. Perhaps most notably, the belief that if a handful of the plant was placed under a pillow, it would reveal a person’s future love mate within a dream.

Burning Yarrow is thought to bring courage, dispel fear and heal deep wounds. These qualities seemed to lend themselves to the creation on a Smudge Stick to encourage feelings of self love, connection and heart healing. Teamed with a whole rose bud to offer gentle nurturing and healing, Mallow flowers to protect and Lavender and wild Chamomile to ground, relax and help us to open our hearts.

This was a wonderful team of plants to work with. There are just two of these beauties now available in our Etsy shop.

*As of 20/08/20 we have changed the name of our sticks to ‘Smoulder sticks.’ You can read more about our decision regarding this here.

Botanicals

Abundance Smudge Sticks

In the approach to Lammas, as Summer reaches its height, we wanted to create a Smudge Stick that celebrates the rich abundance of the season. You may well have read my previous post about Goldenrod finding its way into my garden this year.

Goldenrod is extremely high in antioxidants and its Latin name Solidago translates as ‘to make whole or heal’. In folklore Goldenrod is believed to to bring luck and prosperity and encourage an abundant mindset. These qualities are believed to become more potent when the plant self seeds too!

After harvesting some during the waning moon I felt strongly that this would be the star of the show. Teamed with sun ruled Bay, refreshing Peppermint, powerful Red clover and vibrant Nasturtium flowers, this Smudge Stick intends to encourage feelings of abundance and prosperity.

Research suggests that burning herbs is a fast and effective method for delivering the therapeutic properties of a plant to an individual. The practice of burning dried plants has been carried out extensively across cultures and may be the earliest example of aromatherapy.

You can find out more about this beautiful smudge stick in our Etsy shop now.

*As of 20/08/20 we have changed the name of our sticks to ‘Smoulder sticks.’ You can read more about our decision regarding this here.

Botanicals

Sleep and Dream Smudge Sticks

Our new sleep and dream smudge sticks are crafted with Mugwort gathered under July’s full moon. This beautiful plant is named after Artemis, the Greek goddess of the Moon.

Mugwort is referenced in Norse and Celtic mythology as a magical plant that wards off evil, and for this reason was hung in door ways or burned to clear stagnation and prevent illness in the home. It has a long history of use in herbal medicine particularly with issues relating to the digestive system and the menstrual cycle. It is referred to by many as the ‘dream plant’ and is thought to enhance intuition and bring lucidity to dreams, making them easier to recall in the morning.

It has been lovingly woven with Lavender, a herb that is known to calm the central nervous system to help promote rest and wild Rose petals that gently uplift and nurture.

As always plants are powerful, and some people experience side effects to some plants it is important to ensure it connects with you personally. We always recommend doing your own research and introducing new plants gently.

You can find our Sleep and Dream smudge sticks in our Etsy shop now.

*As of 20/08/20 we have changed the name of our sticks to ‘Smoulder sticks.’ You can read more about our decision regarding this here.

Botanicals

Helping Hands Salve

On a beautiful day a few weeks ago, we foraged a bounty of delicious dandelion flowers, rich with colour and healing properties. We also collected some fresh nettles and wanted to use them both in something special. These abundant plants are considered to have numerous beneficial properties for nourishing and protecting the skin. Full of vitamins, minerals and antioxidants, offering antibacterial and anti inflammatory action. They felt like the perfect plants to create a healing hand salve, especially for sore, over-washed hands. We also added some of our homegrown dried organic lavender for a gentle scent and extra healing.

We wanted to create an offering that we could give to loved ones, many who are key workers and who have been suffering with sore hands due to all the extra washing during the pandemic. We will be concocting another small batch of balms in the coming days so keep an eye out if you would like one.