Hand-cut, hammered, and shaped ornament is made with reclaimed tinplate framing this tiny print reproduction of an antique holy card featuring the Sacred Heart.
After filing and sanding sharp corners and edges, I embellished it from my stash of vintage, antique, and/or reclaimed fabrics, metals, beads, and trims, including resin rhinestones, vintage lace, a satin rose, a vintage plastic faceted heart charm in a brass frame, and a tiny little curl of dried vine for the crown of thorns.
This piece and others available at Seraphin Station.
Altar Conjure Bottle – handmade folk art – gold leaf
Ghuede Altar Libation Bottle
I rarely do auctions, but I have one up now on eBay for an altar/libation bottle for Manman Brigitte.
Item listing is for an etched- and cut-glass hand-decorated perfume-style altar or libation bottle, decorated for and dedicated to Manman Brigitte, mistress of the large, powerful, and rambunctious Gheuede family of loa. The neck is embellished with glass beads, ribbons, a wire-wrapped purple glass heart bead, and a pewter St. Brigid medal, secured with raffia (this raffia actually comes from Africa directly, if you like to know the little personal histories behind the components of the pieces you buy – I buy the large, lost-wax-method-cast African brass beads that I use in some of my jewelry locally, from a twenty-something kid who works at his uncle’s import shop. The kid’s grandfather is a tribal chieftain in Ghana, he says, and wearing all that jewelry all the time is very heavy, he also says! The raffia is what the large beads come strung on, and I like to use it rather than raffia plucked off a shelf at an art supply store. The bottle it decorates, I’m afraid, just comes from a factory in China though.)
It will reside on my three-tiered Ghuede altar until it finds its new home with a devotee of the loa. It comes with a four-ounce bottle of hand-blended ritual bath for Manman Brigitte. My voodoo baths are hand-blended here from my formulas, and are the very same baths I use in my own sevis and when I perform in-person headwashings and spiritual baths at my usually-annual headwashing/spiritual cleansing events. Like most sacred baths in Haitian and New World vodoun, these are strongly scented and contain perfumes and colognes in addition to herbs and hydrosols, so a little goes a long way; a bottle of bath mixture could be diluted in a tub of water if taking a full immersion bath, or a few splashes could be added to a basin of water for a stand-up bath, or you could use the mixture undiluted as a sprinkle or spray.
Entire piece is app. 5.5 inches tall, including the stopper. The bottle itself is 4 inches tall and 2" wide.
A portion of proceeds from sale of voodoo altar bottles and voodoo rosaries goes to Fonkoze.org, a not-for-profit, no-missionary-strings-attached organization designed to empower the poor of rural Haiti, give them literacy and financial skills, and help them build a firm foundation to better their lives and their quality of life through micro-banking and small-business startup help — all, crucially, while putting Haitian nationals (especially women) in leadership positions and giving them religious, artistic, aesthetic, and economic autonomy instead of asking them to reject their culture or religion of origin.
I create these ritual folk art items individually, in a ritual context and in service to the loa. Thus they are not meant just for spooky decoration or "goth chic" – they are ritually constructed, consecrated, "fed" religious items and are intended for altar use in a religious context, not to look cool or freak your mother out, ok?
Shipping is via priority mail with delivery confirmation and insurance. If you order additional items and they will fit in the same priority flat rate box as this bottle and the bottle of bath, then there will be no additional shipping charge for the other items; feel free to write first and ask if you aren’t sure if your items will qualify or if you want me to confirm what the postage will be before you bid.
Please note handling times before bidding!! The handling time is because nearly all of my items are custom-finished and prayed over, blessed, or consecrated before leaving my hands (so feel free to tell me a bit about the situation you’re getting this item for and I can customize the prayers or consecrations of your item as I thank the spirits for their guardianship of the ritual object and ask them to guard it and their new owner in its new home). And have a look at the FAQ and ALL of the item listing details on this page, please, before purchasing from me, *please* – it’s frustrating to put things like handling time and postage cost in the item listing but have people freak out and write me 50 messages when the item doesn’t ship within 24 hours! I *always* answer my email and am happy to answer questions – but given the volume of messages I get every single day, it usually takes me about two business days to respond. However, half of the questions I get have already been answered in the item listing and/or FAQ 🙂
This is nearly finished (something unique to this loa and therefore not for public consumption still needs to be added), but I wanted to photograph it because it’s a new "feel" for me on a Ghuede box – less flash, more Victorian, more "mourning cabinet" type of thing.
This is NOT for sale; it’s a custom piece.
I have just upgraded to a paid account, so expect more pictures, as they’ll be easier for me to post now.
School is about to slam me hard, so don’t feel shy if I promised you something and you’re wondering where it is. If I don’t get to it soon, it may be months before I can finish it (and keep in mind I have prior commitments to reading clients, the few client cases I have taken on altar work for, and custom pieces I have in the queue). Similarly, keep in mind that some stuff just takes longer to make than other stuff, and sometimes it takes longer to *start* just because I have to "get the picture" before I know what to do, if that makes any sense. Sometimes I have to hunt down just the right piece or component, and that has meant that some more complicated pieces have taken me *months.* In one case I can think of, I started a custom cosmetic box probably about two years ago, now, have pulled it out and done one or two things to it every few months, but have not found the "thing" to tie the whole thing together yet. I feel bad, but I can’t rush myself on this stuff or else nobody is happy with it, and this is why I don’t take deposits on custom work – I won’t work according to anybody else’s timeline if it means I have to ship something I am not happy with.
Tau Thomas, I finished a Lazarus medal, and you have first dibs if you like it. If not, no worries, you won’t hurt my feelings. Whee, why don’t I use my new paid account to post some pictures *right now*?!
Here’s Lazarus (these medals are notoriously difficult to photograph, sorry for the quality):
Continue reading “new stuff”
I cleaned these bones myself, so in a way I feel like I’ve been working on this piece for six month! These are possum bones that I got away from the dogs before they were done with him and buried. There are teeth and everything, and some genuine Alabama dirt still on them, too. I didn’t peroxide them so don’t go licking them or anything.
Includes a vial of graveyard dirt, a little top hat, a tiny little glass lampwork pepper bead, real Mardi Gras beads, and boxwood skull beads. Absolutely positively one of a kind.
Now I really am taking a nap.
I’ve been working on this off and on for about a year and finally finished it this weekend. It’s made out of an old recycled clock case I got at a thrift store in Alabama, which is so very very appropriate for St. Expedite. Mixed media: resin, fabric, enamel, acrylic, oil paints, paper, glass, and real genuine plastic Mardi Gras beads. Oh, and black feathers. And gold plastic horseshoes. I dont’ care if it never sells – I like looking at it so much I don’t mind keeping it for myself.