Gerina Dunwich is a well-known name in occult communities with several books published over the years that have helped guided interested readers on the path of Wicca and Witchcraft. Spellcrafting: A Beginner’s Guide to Creating and Casting Effective Spells is her newest and any new practitioner should add it to their library. Written for the beginner to intermediate student in mind, the reader also does not need to follow any particular path to work with this book as it is open to all.
Spellcrafting is broken down into 12 chapters covering: Crafting the Magick, Magickal Correspondences, Time for Magick, Divination before Incantation, Amulets, Talismans, charms and Fetishes, Magick of Wax and Wick, Book of Shadows, Fertility Magick, Weatherworking, Kitchen Witch, Yuletide Witches, Superstitions, and spells, and Black Magick.
Dunwich begins with some basic tools and descriptions. While tools as well as ingredients etc. can always be modified and personalized as needed, she explains that spells are from the readers energy so personalization is recommended while keeping to the basic structures of the spells. She also gives some basics to the elements and how to be sure you are working with the corresponding elements. The last part of this section is some Q & A that frequently asked questions from those new to the practice.
Next she dives into the magickal correspondences for the spells such as things, times, symbols and more. This is a great quick reference section that can be used again and again as the reader is crafting different spells and intentions. Dunwich also discusses timing of spells such as the moon phases, planetary hours, time of day/night, sabbats and magickal days.
For those readers who are interested in divination, she provides a great section on the major arcana cards as well as the meanings. Prior to casting a spell (especially if you have mixed emotions about it), she recommends a quick card reading to assist whether to proceed as well as a possible outcome.
My favorite section focused on the Amulets, Talismans, Charms and Fetishes. I can’t leave the house until I am adorned with my magickal jewelry for the day. The author explains the various types that may be used for spellcasting or every day wear. For example, Natural Amulets are created by nature including plants, flowers, herbs stones, etc. Man made jewelry can by used like a pentacle for protection. A fetish, she explains, in African primitive magick is the most powerful amulet. It can be made by nature or by a shaman/witch doctor. They are believed to be possessed by spirits and used as protection. Found in this section is also information on Talismanic Correspondences for the reader to have the best chance of success for the spell.
The book touches on candle magick which is also another of my favorites. There is some fun historical facts followed by how to prepare the candle for spells, candle colors, which day is best, which corresponds to match zodiac signs and more.
There are spells and rituals for all of the sabbats and a great list of various intentions to suit your needs. The information can be referenced again and again or copied into the readers own Book of Shadows. This book is geared more for the beginner of this path but perhaps not too much for the advanced spellcaster.
~review by Amber Barnes
Author: Gerina Dunwich
Weiser Books, August 1, 2020
pp. 256, $15.95