Botanicals

About your Smoulder Stick


Smoulder sticks are bundles of herbs bound together and dried for the purpose of burning. Burning herbs is one of the earliest forms of aromatherapy and has been practiced for thousands of years. You may be familiar with the term smudge stick or smudging, which refers to a specific Indigenous American sacred smoke ceremony. Most cultures across the world have burned herbs and dried plants at some point in their history.

All of our smoulder sticks are intuitively handcrafted with a blend of homegrown organic herbs & wild foraged plants local or naturalised in the UK, each with their own unique qualities.

As the herbs burn and smoulder an aromatic smoke is released containing many of the beneficial compounds and energies of the plant. The element of fire also symbolises energy, transformation and clearing of unwanted energies.

We do not add any fragrance to our sticks. They are intended for the enjoyment of the natural plant properties rather than as fragrant incense. Plants will all burn differently and getting to know your stick can be a mindful experience!

How to use

Hold the end of your stick just above a candle until it smoulders or catches alight. Depending on the plants in your stick it can react very variably. It may produce flames especially on the first light which is normal but always use gently with care and attention and a fireproof dish underneath to catch any falling embers. Once lit, after the few seconds, blow the flame out as you would a candle allowing your stick to smoulder away and release aromatic smoke into your space. Place your smouldering stick in a heatproof dish or bowl.

Working with plants in this way can enhance a meditation or relaxation process. Observing the smoke as you breathe deeply and relax, allowing the plants to support your intentions and clear what no longer serves you. You may also wish to move your smoulder stick around your space to bring the cleansing smoke to particular areas of your room/home.

Different plants burn at different rates. Sometimes your stick will extinguish by itself. You can light it again if you would like to continue enjoying the smoke.

When you are ready to extinguish your stick, hold the smouldering end against the heat proof bowl or dish until fully out, a layer of sand in your dish makes this easier too.

Always use your stick in a well ventilated area and with a heatproof bowl or dish to collect any embers that will fall from your stick.

Please be aware that plants are powerful and not all are recommended for use during pregnancy or breast feeding, if you have certain health conditions or around pets. Please always check the full blend list and consult a specialist before use. If you experience any adverse reactions, discontinue immediately.

Some people choose not to burn their sticks at all. If you prefer, you can hang yours above your bed or place on your altar to enjoy the energy of the plants or use in mindful pratices.

How to care for your smoulder stick

You should be able to use your stick over many occasions. The herbs burn best when there is some air between them. You may find as you get closer to where the stick has been tied that it doesn’t smoulder as well. When this happens snip the next twine tie off and continue burning your stick.

If the end of the stick becomes too charred, it may not light as easily, in which case you can clear some of the blackened bits by pressing down against your fireproof dish or even snipping the ends if necessary.

Keeping your stick dry and out of direct sunlight will preserve its qualities for longer.

If you have any further questions we are always happy to hear for you.

Happy smouldering!

Our Mindful Magick Smoulder stick in action
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, Foraging

Spirit of the South Smudge Sticks

We are currently in the process of converting a van into our very own travelling home. We are around half way through our build now with our kitchen in place and took our very first trip in it a few weeks ago.

Our first stop was a visit to family down on the south coast for a lovely few days together. We then headed out west, further along the Jurassic coast to explore.

The area is steeped in myth and legend and it wasn’t long before I lost myself with so many beautiful wildflowers along the way.

I felt called to create a smudge stick that embodied the magical essence I experienced as I explored the ancient landscapes of the south.

I gathered some flowering wood Sage, that was growing ferociously in a beautiful woodland. Combined with some ancient & magical wildflowers including Yarrow, Red Clover, Mallow flowers and Meadowsweet I wrapped them in a Mullein leaf and finished with flowering heather.

All of the chosen plants are well known in traditional medicine for their healing and supportive energy. This smudge stick is intended to offer a touch of magic, with plants that ground, protect and help you return to yourself. (Please note these limited edition smudge sticks have now sold out.)

*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

The benefits of Bay

We are lucky to have a huge supply of Bay in the garden thanks to a rather old and beloved Bay tree. I love adding the leaves to our herb bundles for burning.

Did you know that Bay leaves contain Linalool a compound known for its calming properties, also present in plants such as Lavender. Studies have shown that Linalool reduces elevated stress levels to almost normal conditions.

These lovely leaves also contain Eugenol which is known for its antiseptic, anti-inflammatory and pain relieving qualities. As mentioned in our previous post, burning is an effective way to release the therapeutic benefits of a plant into your environment.

You can find Bay in our best selling herbal garden smoulder sticks.

Botanicals

Solstice Smudge Sticks

We have been busy harvesting our herbs and crafting smudge sticks during the Solstice period. We found it to be the perfect time as many of our herbs and flowers were peaking in tune with the sun.

We made another batch of our popular Herbal Garden Smudge sticks; a fragrant blend of Sage, Bay, Rosemary, Lavender and Rose. These will be back in our Etsy shop once dried in a couple of weeks time.

We also crafted some beautiful Solar smudge sticks blending flowering Feverfew & Nasturtium paired with Bay, Lemon balm, Lavender & golden Marjoram. Holding the essence of the summer solstice & solar energy these plants are thought to ease tension & worry and promote peace & lightness.

Mugwort was combined with Lavender, Sage and wild Chamomile for a small batch of sleep & dream smudge sticks that will also be in our shop over the next few weeks.

*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

Smudge Stick Crafting

I love this time of year. Our herbs are bursting with life, energy and aroma. We have a new addition to our herb garden this year – a beautiful purple Sage. Tonight, I have been crafting up some fresh smudge sticks ready to dry out for orders. They include fresh and dried Lavender that is scenting the whole house. Bay leaves, the divine purple Sage and wild Rose petals dried from last year. These Smudge Sticks are intended to offer peace of mind and clarity. You can find out more about purchasing them here.

*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.