This month, we spoke to Louise at Hedge Witchery, a craft stall based in Middlesbrough.
POTN: Could you please tell us about your shop, what you offer, and why you started?
Louise: My craft stall is called Hedge Witchery, all my items are handmade, and I try to use as many natural and upcycled materials as I can. I started trading over 3 years ago as Greenman Garden Crafts. I used to solely make green man themed craft items, but since then I've been learning more about pagan traditions and witchcraft, and my stall has developed to include ritual robes, original artwork, spell jars, loose incense, jewellery, altar items, and lot of other witchy crafts and curiosities.
POTN: What is your pagan path, and how does that link with your business?
Louise: I've only recently in the last year or so considered myself a pagan. On reflection it's clear that I've always been a pagan witch. Everything I do, both past and present, has been naturally evolving and instinctive. I didn't choose this; paganism aligns with my core beliefs, values and lifestyle. Though running my craft stall I've met so many like minded people who like me are in love with nature and the natural world.
I'm a very keen gardener and forager and have a particular interest in magikal and medicinal properties, and try to incorporate this into my craft.
Recently I have been looking at my ancestors, in particular my Nanna (my father's mother); I've had the privilege to discover she was also a practising witch. All her decorative broomsticks, owl totems and rituals that I didn't really notice much as a child now make so much more sense.
My great great grandmother on my mother’s side was also known to be very talented at tasseomancy (reading tea leaves).
POTN: What advice would you give to other pagans and witches?
Louise: Advice I would give to other pagans and witches is: be true to yourself, find your own path. What someone else thinks is the right way may not be the right way for you. Trust your own intuition and instincts and do what makes you happy - be your authentic self.
POTN: What is your favourite part of paganism/witchcraft?
Louise: It's too hard to pick my favourite part of paganism and witchcraft. I love using plants and herbs that I grow myself in my craft, and items for my stall. But I also love sewing and creating unique products. It makes me so happy to make beautiful items I can share with others.
POTN: How can people find you? Is there anything you would like to add?
Louise: People can find me and join a Hedge Witchery Community by visiting my Facebook group here.
I also run a monthly craft stall in Middlesbrough at Linthorpe Community Centre on the first Saturday of every month and would love to see more friendly pagan faces there...
If anyone would like Hedge Witchery to attend an event in the north east they can contact me through my Facebook page here.
I'd like to thank Pagans of the North Magazine for this opportunity.
Claire (Louise) Keen