John Barleycorn, photo by Jed SullivanAt Lammas time, also known as Lughnasadh, ((For more information on Lughnasadh, try Susan Starr’s earlier primer “Lughnasadh: The feast of grain and berries.”)) the sun is high in the sky; fruits and vegetables are hanging low or covering farmlands; grain and corn are abundant, ready to be gathered for the harvest feast. It’s a time to give thanks for all this. It’s also time to acknowledge that gradually the harvest will be diminishing over the coming months. As we cut the first grain and corn, we remember the death of Sun King Lugh, in the form of the grain spirit John Barleycorn, who sacrifices his life so the community can have food for the coming winter and seeds for the next season.

Over the years, it’s become traditional to make corn dollies out of the husks of the cut corn. We may also make corn husk chains, wreaths, and sachets; you’ll find directions for the latter below.

The easy-to-make Lughnasadh sun candle holder will bring the warmth of the sun into your home, ritual, and feast. This is a great Lughnasadh craft to do with kids. (By changing the pictures used, you can make these candles for any sabbat or ritual.) So enjoy a lazy summer afternoon making these crafts; add an intention or an incantation to bring some Lammas abundance into your home.

Glass candle holder, photo by ryan melaugh

Lughnasadh Sun Decoupage Candle Holder

For this craft, you’ll need a glass candle holder of your choice, along with small pictures of grain, herbs, corn, or sunflowers cut from old magazines. You may also include decorative trim such as beads or glitter glue, if desired. You’ll also need Mod Podge or other decoupage glue.

  1. Starting from the top of the candle holder, hold one picture at a time on the surface of the glass.
  2. Completely cover the picture with a thin layer of glue, making sure it covers the edges and a small part of the glass around it.
  3. Overlap the pictures going around and down the candle holder till it is completely covered with pictures.
  4. Snip off any overlap at the bottom with a pair of scissors, being careful not to get glue on the base of the candle holder.
  5. Decorate the candle with glitter glue or beads, if desired
  6. Let dry overnight and place a candle inside to light up your new Lughnasadh sun candle holder.

Corn husk, photo by kristine.mackin

Herb Incense in Corn Husk Sachets

As adapted from Lammas Craft Projects.

This is a two-part craft. First, you’ll make the incense. You can use any dried herbs for this. Herbs appropriate for Lammas include heather, lavender, sage, thyme, rosemary, and dried apple blossoms. The incense can be stored in airtight jars for up to three months.

Here’s a simple recipe for incense that can also be used for filling the sachet.

1 part basil
1/2 part cinnamon bark or lavender
1 part coriander
2 parts goldenrod
1 part heather
1/2 part rosemary
2 parts Sweet Annie or dried apple blossoms
1 part yarrow

  1. Add ingredients to mixing bowl one at a time.
  2. Measure carefully, and if the leaves or blossoms need to be crushed, use a mortar and pestle.

For the sachet you’ll need several corn husks and a hot glue gun.

  1. Trim the ends off the husks, and cut them into strips of about 1/2” – 3/4” wide.
  2. Weave several strips together, five in each direction, to make a square basket weave pattern.
  3. Use the hot glue gun to tuck the edges of the husks into place, forming an even edge.
  4. Fold the square in half and glue the short sides together, creating a small pocket.
  5. Fill the pouch with the incense, and then hot glue the long open edge closed.
  6. Place in drawers. The husks will dry naturally over time into small fragrant packets.

Do you have any favourite Lughnasadh crafts you’ve tried? If you craft one of these, let us know in the comments, or tag us @SpiralNature in a photo on Instagram or Twitter.

Image credits: Jed Sullivanryan melaugh, and kristine.mackin