Welcome to my workshop, witches! If you were a 90s-ish baby, you might possess a vague childhood memory of taking a factory tour to custom build a stuffed animal. I’m here to take you on the magically-inclined adult version! What I have compiled for you here is a basic guide to building your own spells. I believe that there is a special power in crafting your own spells; you are infusing their every detail with your intentions. Whether you’re new to spell crafting or seeking further inspiration, this build-a-spell workshop is full of the most important details to keep in mind.
WHY: The key thing you need to focus on when crafting a spell is why you are doing the spell in the first place. Having a clear intention IS your spell; the actions of the spell are just to strengthen the energy around your intention. A spell is a ritual to empower the strength behind your intentions to help you bring them into reality. Have a solid reason you are casting the spell and believe in its ability to come true. Are you wanting to attract abundance, love, or something into your life? Are you casting a protection spell? Are you asking for wisdom or guidance? The more firmly you stand in your commitment to bring your intention to reality, the more likely you will be to make it happen. A spell is showing yourself – and by association, the universe – that you are willing to take the action required to bring your dreams into reality.
A brief but vital note on spell-related ethics: The classic Wiccan rede states as a guide to magical undertakings, “An’ ye harm none, do as ye will.” It also outlines the Rule of Three, that anything you send out comes back to you threefold. You do not have to subscribe specifically to Wicca to accept this as sound magical advice. This is the law of the universe; what you send out is reflected back to your expression of life. Plus, casting mean magic is just plain bad karma. My spell crafting advice applies only to spells being used for good, never to try to control or harm others. I hate that I have to say that, but I have heard it’s a thing, and it’s not welcome here! Trust me, that type of shit is not worth messing with; you do NOT want to get bitten in the ass by a backfiring spell. Ok?!? Ok.
WHEN: The next thing you must consider is, when to do the spell? You can consider the details of this down to the season, day of the year, day of the week, or hour of the day if you want to! But it is not always ideal to wait for the perfect calendar day to manifest a particular spell, which is why I typically suggest just taking into consideration the phase the moon is in. Use certain moon phases for manifesting certain types of energy:
New moon: use this when you want to manifest something you will be working towards; this energy is for new beginnings, change, and fresh starts.
Waxing moon: use for attracting something to you, love spells, money spells, bringing opportunities to you, creating abundance.
Full moon: big manifestations, spells where you want ALL THE ENERGY, powerful intentions, things need to HAPPEN!
Waning moon: protection spells, banishing unwanted energies, spells to make something diminish or go away, also spells related to psychic mysteries.
OPTIONAL: Casting a circle! In Wicca and many forms of magic, a circle of energy is often first cast around the spell working area. This is believed to contain the energy of the spell to keep it as concentrated as possible while also acting as a forcefield to keep unwanted energy out. To cast a circle, you’ll want to move clockwise. You can do this by walking in a circle, or drawing one by pointing with your finger, incense, a wand, or a magical instrument of your choosing. When you are done with your spell, you can dispel the circle by moving counter-clockwise, releasing its energy out into the universe. Keep in mind that even aside from circle-casting, moving in a certain direction has magical implications:
Clockwise movements: to attract or draw energy
Counter-clockwise movements: to take away or dispel energy
INGREDIENTS: Next you’ll want to have some spell materials in front of you! These can be as simple or as intricate as you would like them to be. The most important thing is that these objects call to mind your intention. They are instruments to help you direct the focus of your energy to your desired manifestation. YOU are the magic – and technically you don’t need anything but yourself. But why not add a little flair for increased focus and fun? That’s what makes a spell into a truly ~enchanting~ affair. (Sorry.) Whatever you think you need is probably what you need. These can include, but are not limited to the following:
Candles: a white candle is all-purpose, black for banishing / protection, purple for psychic power, pink for love / attraction, red for health and vitality, green for abundance, yellow for happiness, blue for matters of spirituality and wisdom
Natural objects: shells, hair, flowers, herbs, plants, wood, sand dollars, stones, crystals, water, salt, whatever it is you might associate with your intention
Herbs: you can have these on hand as an offering, drink as tea to infuse yourself with their magic, or sprinkle carefully over a flame; find an herb that has properties that can help your cause!
Ribbon / thread / yarn / string / cord: tying knots can be used to add emphasis to a spell
Pen & paper: to write down an intention, mantra, or affirmation and infuse it with power
Tarot: you can also have with you a card that represents your intention to help you visualize
INVOCATIONS: When you have gathered whatever it is you feel you need before you, and are standing firmly in your intention, it is time to invoke energy to channel in your spell. You can do this by silently using breath to draw energy from your life force within; you can invoke an entity if you wish; you can also call on the energy of the four directions or elements (North and Earth, East and Air, South and Fire, West and Water). Keep in mind that whatever or whoever you invoke, you must thank and bid farewell to them when your spell is finished.
Example: I call on you, energies of the West and water, to flow love into my spell tonight. … Thank you, water energy of the West, for your presence in my spell tonight. Merry we meet, and merry we part.
ACTION: Now is the time to firmly state your intention to the universe, amidst all the power you have raised around you. You can say it out loud, whisper it, shout it in your mind, or write it down on a piece of paper (which you can then burn, bury, or save). To seal the deal, take whatever actions you feel called to, even if it’s just taking a breath. When you feel it is done, say it! Use something like “It is done.” “So shall it be.” “Blessed and so mote it be.” “So it is.”
CLOSING: Once you have performed the actions of your spell and spoken the words of your intention into existence, it is time to close out your spell. You can blow out a candle if you lit one, dismiss the energy you called upon, and clear your circle with a counter-clockwise motion. One thing I always recommend doing is to “ground” yourself by putting your palms on the earth for a few breaths to let any excess energy drain from your body.
Please keep in mind that with the right intentions, any action can be a spell! Get creative mixing and matching these elements and adding your own actions with sacred intentions to fully integrate spell crafting into your life! Now go out there and put more magic into the world.