Lughnasadh is the first of three harvest festivals for fall. It is a time when the first grains and ripe fruits are harvested and thanks is given for natures bounty. There are many fun crafts to do at this time, some of which are baking bread and making your own smudge sticks.
Baking bread was an important part of this festival for ancient people as the bread baked at Lughnasadh, as well as Mabon, would last them through winter. If you decide to bake bread there are a few magical ways to spice things up. You can mold your bread into different shapes such as a Goddess, moon, pentacle, triple Goddess etc. You can chant a few words or blessing over your bread as your baking it. Corn was also a popular harvest crop so feel free to make corn bread or any other type of flavored bread such as cinnamon. Place your bread on your Lughnasadh altar as an offering or serve it with your Lughnasadh dinner.
Smudge sticks are easy and fun to make. Even though you can buy them pre-made, I like to make my own magical tools whenever possible. Cut herbs from your garden or go wild-crafting. If neither of those options are available to you, try your local farmers market or grocery store.
What you will need for this project:
- Scissors or clippers
- String cut about four or five feet long
- Cut herbs such as sage, mugwort, rosemary, lavender, etc.
Cut your herb stalks about six to ten inches long and gather them so the cut ends are together. Wind the string tightly around the stem of the bundle leaving a few inches of hanging string (you will need this later). Continue wrapping tightly around the stem of the bundle then gradually work your way up to the leafy section until you reach the end. Now go back down with your string wrapping the bundle the opposite way creating a criss cross pattern. Once you reach the end where the stem is, tie the remaining string with the extra two inches you left at the stem.
Once you are finished, cut off any loose leafy ends sticking out through the string so the smudge stick looks smooth. Now you may hang your smudge stick up to dry. It can take up to a week for your smudge stick to completely dry. Once they are dry they are ready to be ritually burned! You can also bless them at your altar to further empower them with your own energies.
Enjoy baking your bread and crafting your very own smudge sticks!
Photo courtesy of Live In Art