worth the money

Review: Scents for Cents Subscription Box

September, 2018

Moon Dancer

Enhance Your Senses”

Moon Dancer offers a variety of Subscription Boxes ranging from soaps, oils, candles, and incense. This month we will be unboxing their Scents for Cents Box, which is a recurring monthly subscription box of handmade incense picked monthly for you and includes an incense holder. The price of this box ranges from $10 for a one month subscription to $100 for a year.

As soon as the Moon Dancer box arrived I could smell the beautiful, strong aromas permeating through the box.

Opening the box, I was surprised by the sheer amount of incense in the box. I was not expecting this many. The box is stuffed to full of packages upon packages of lovely smelling sticks. Then, when you take them out, you find a burner to go along with them, to make it easy to use them.

My Subscription Box contained 10 sticks each, of the following scents:

Hibiscus

Rain Musk

Butterfly Garden

Dragonfly

Wild Honey

Sweet Rain

Firefly

Summer Solstice

Wisteria

Lilac

Storm Clouds

Sun Shower

Water

Flower Fairy

Rain

That is a ton of incense! You can tell they are all fresh! I liked the smell of most of them. Maybe one or two weren’t my favorites. The only one I can remember that I found not too pleasing was Water.

I found when burning the incense that for the first few seconds they burn black and ash flies around. The ash was not lit. So there was no fire danger. Just a small bit of soot. It was not too much, and over quickly.

The incense holder is a common, wooden one. It is pretty with a moon & stars on it. Very practical. Nice on any altar.

As described by the owner of Moon Dancer:

The incense is ground up, rolled and scented by me.

It is made from non-endangered, sustainable wood. The wood was also chosen because it burns very slowly and has very little smell of it’s own.

Each stick will burn for an hour. Of course, if it is burning on a windowsill of an open window or under a fan it will cut down the burn time.

The sticks are saturated in scent, so they are strong, and the scent lasts on the stick for longer than it does on incense that is dipped. If you keep it in the zip-lock bag it comes in it will last at least 2 years.

There is no charcoal or alcohol used ever! So you will never hae a burnt after smell.

All the incense is scented with my own blends. It can be made in any of my 600 blends featured on my website www.mdancer.com.

For cratejoy each month in the Scent for Cents Box, customers receive 15 different scents. There are 10 sticks of each scent. The cost is just $10 a month. The scents are based on the month, flowers that are blooming, holidays, or events.

I guarantee to not repeat a scent in a year.

The first crate will include a plain wooden ash catcher. Each box after that will include a free gift of a burner.

Each month the incense is made fresh for the crates.”

I think Moon Dancer Scent for Cents Box is a great investment. The price is so right starting at only $10 a month, and you get so much for your money. The quality of the incense is superb. You even get a burner to go with your incense. This box is great for any witch’s arsenal! I recommend it!

***

About the Author:

Jennifer Wright is a witch on a path of change that is always winding. She founded PaganPagesOrg in the hopes of giving those a platform to share and learn without judgment. There are too many important things to her and not enough room to mention them. You are one of them.

Worth the Witch

September, 2018

Alchemy & Ashes

 

 

Parlour of Magical Curiosities

Inspired By History, Myth, and Magic

 

 


Alchemy & Ashes provide a variety of excellently handcrafted, by them, elixirs, incense, perfumes, soaps, conjure powders, and more. They supply an assortment of kits and boxes ranging from their $30 Sanctus Box, which includes a Protection Oil & Florida Water for Ritual, Purification & Aura spray for purification energy clearing, to; a PART the VEIL Conjure Kit- Witch Box that helps with intuition, divination & so much more starting at only $20. I’m only naming two, to see more of their kits & boxes, you can visit them at Alchemy & Ashes. You will not be disappointed. Their boxes are not recurring monthly subscriptions. They are one time purchases, as you go kits & boxes. So there is no need to worry about having to cancel your monthly subscriptions.

As I close the envelope addressed to me a waft of the sweetest herbal smells fills my nostrils bringing the promise of witchiness to come and my excitement surges. I received a mysterious box from Alchemy & Ashes all in black and smelling like a Witch’s Heavenly Cupboard. It immediately piqued my curiosity.

 

 

I had to tear right in I could not hold back. When I opened the box everything was beautifully wrapped like Gothic Presents. I was in a Gothic Dream come true!!!! Now let’s see what’s inside these little packages…. Rip, rip, rip…..

 

 

Pamphlet

 

Very nicely made. One page, folded. The art of their Logo and everything goes very well with a gothicy/witch theme. The Pamphlet lists all Alchemy & Ashes contact information and it mentions that they have a free app. I checked out the app and it is very helpful.

The pamphlet teaches you a few ways to use Conjure Powders. Reading this is how I learned the theme of the box. Everything is wrapped up so elegantly you could not tell what was in the box. Just smell beauty. The pamphlet goes on to tell you about 6 herbal blends of Conjure Powders, their titles, and info on them. At this point I was not sure what it all meant, but it looked promising. So I decided to get into more!

 

Conjure Powders

 

What I mistakenly thought would be a very large candle due to it’s sheer size and shape (most witch boxes give you candles what can I say!) when I opened the box turned out to be quite a surprise…6 tins of Conjure Powders. As you can see in the picture the tins are full. I kept spilling them in fact when I opened each of them. Then I would have to do a blessing, invite a spirit, or banish something. LOL. It was quite funny to watch. My familiar went nuts. I was expecting a smaller sample size of the conjure powders for a box. I was extremely pleased. The 6 Conjure Powders are as follows:

  • Elicio (Conjure) – a mixture to conjure spirits & energies beneficial to your workings.
  • Exilium (Banish) – a concoction to banish spirits & energies that are detrimental to your workings.
  • Praescientia (Intuition) – a blend to aid with intuitive abilities & divinatory gifts.
  • Amor (Love) – a mix to attract love.
  • Praesidium (Protection) – a combination to create a boundary of protection from unwanted spirits or energies.
  • Fortuna (Prosperity) – A mixture to attract spirits & energies of prosperity and abundance to you.

Almost all of the Conjure Powders from Alchemy & Ashes in the box are made from a blend of at least 7 herbs. Most of them were made from 13! The smells are vibrant. The pamphlet lists the ingredients in each powder as well as what it is used for & a definition for it’s meaning. Plus, as I mentioned before, they teach you a variety of ways to use Conjure Powders. None are difficult.

So excited by these 6 great sized tins that I almost forgot the box contains more! On we go….

 

A Modern Witch’s Flying Ointment

 

Unguentum Sabatti is the hand that parts the Veil.” That is how Alchemy & Ashes begin to explain what Witch’s flying ointment is. Flying ointment is a mixture of herbs & essential oils mixed in coconut oil and beeswax that help relax, soothe, and help bring you to another level of consciousness & help aid in meditations , divination, lucid dreaming, rituals, astral traveling, etc… When applied to certain areas of the EXTERNAL BODY before beginning.

You get a full 1oz supply in a nice tin. Solid, not too greasy and slimy like others I have tested in the past where you put your finger in the ointment and it just goes right to the bottom. This is substantial and will last a long time. The smell is amazing and you can actually pick out some of the herbs from simply taking a sniff. The back of the tin does, however, list the ingredients.

 

Sanctus Aqueum


This is Alchemy & Ashes own version of Florida Water. Florida Water is used for blessings, consecrating, cleansing, & purification when you can not smudge.

They create each batch on the New Moon & let it charge until the Full Moon. It is, also, infused with a Quartz Crystal to amplify it’s energy. It comes in a glass spray bottle.

When you spritz the air, you automatically smell more than just water in the air. I have used these sprays before, sometimes called ‘smudge sprays’ or ‘aura sprays’. I like them. They are quick ways to cleanse the area and yourself & they do work and calm you. You can feel them lessen tension in the air quickly. This one, however, has the most brilliant smell so far! The bottle may seem small but you don’t need to use much. Alchemy & Ashes recipe is strong. I am finding all I need is 1 maaaaybe 2 pumps. So shake, pump once, Deeeep breath, hold 1, 2, 3, Release, Ahhhhhh! I’m in a garden….a field….I’m goneeeeee….

 

Sanctus Oleum


In this 10 ml glass roller bottle is a witch’s protection oil. It can be used to consecrate items, make protective sigils on doorways & windows, as well as used to anoint yourself during ritual work.

Alchemy & Ashes creates each batch on the New Moon and leaves it to charge until the full moon. It is, also, infused with a piece of black tourmaline for it’s protective energy.

I have never heard of something like this before. It is definitely welcomed new knowledge and a welcomed new tool for my personal witch box. The smell to this oil is heavier than the smudge spray. Thicker somehow, if smells can be thicker. If feels thicker, too. I guess you would want protection to be heavier, your own fortress or armor.

 

Soaps (Free Samples)

Yes, I know you want to eat the picture, bu you can’t, they ARE delicious don’t get me wrong, but they are soaps! The deep brown, marbled soap on the bottom is named ‘Aquitaine’. A mix of lavender, patchouli, & bergamot it reminds me of a cleaner purer version of Bath & Body Works all “natural” line. I may have to change where I purchase my soap from now! The lighter brown, marbled soap on top is named ‘Sweet Alchemy’. It is a blend of almond, cocoa, honey, & oats and I think I may taste this one, it really does smell that good! The third, solid brown bar is named ‘Nimue’ and smells like clean sheets outside drying on a clothesline on a spring day to me. It’s made of lavender, lemon, & Clary sage.

They feel wonderful on the skin. So clean and fresh. They leave you skin soft and smelling as beautiful as the bars.

 

My Overall Opinion…


I have to admit the Witch in me loves the all black theme. Now they did send me a box of many different types of samples to review. I do not think they sell this exact box. But have boxes that sell these items. I can honestly say, though, that Alchemy & Ashes do not hold back and give small sample sizes in their boxes, because they gave me what they put in their boxes. They give you your monies worth. You can smell the quality. Feel it. The Conjure Powders tins are full to bursting, pungent, smell fresh. They explain all in their pamphlet, I love that. They don’t leave you in the dark wondering what to do. The Florida water WORKS. I have yet to try the flying ointment, but the quality is there, and I am waiting to use the Sanctus Oleum for Samhain on my front door. Their sample soaps quality is so amazing you will need more. I can, without a doubt, say this box is WORTH THE WITCH!!!

 

We were blessed to be able to have a little chat with the wonderful Owner & Madame of Alchemy & Ashes Shawnee Kircher!

 

Jennifer Wright: What brought the idea of the mystery box to you?

Shawnee Kircher: We loved the idea of other subscription boxes, and we also liked the idea of getting our products out there to people who may have never used them, or can’t decide which products to start with, so it was a win-win for them and us!

 

JW: How did you begin them?

SK: We realized there was a market for handcrafted ritual products, and felt that our products are a bit different from what we had been seeing. We were tired of seeing the commercially, mass marketed items in a lot of the boxes that lack the spiritual energy that a handcrafted product carries with it. That’s hard to recreate in a factory.

 

JW: How do you choose what you put inside them?

SK: We try to consider the season or sabbat coming up as to what people may be needing at the moment, but also like to have some staple products in there that anyone can use regardless of path or preference.

 

JW: Is yours a recurring monthly box?

SK: We’re aiming for seasonal at the moment. If interest grows, perhaps we will shift to monthly.

 

JW: Are you pagan?

SK: Yes. I use the term Pagan in the sense of a) outside the confines of the Abrahamic religions and b) nature based spiritual path follower. I also use the term Witch, as I am a practitioner of the Craft. I think those two terms can be used separately from each other, as not all Witches are Pagan, and not all Pagans are Witches, but in my practice they go hand in hand. I don’t ascribe to any religious doctrine, though I did find my way to Paganism through Wicca, as it was the most accessible at the time for me, about 20 years ago, and while I’m not an initiate of Wicca nor do I follow any of it’s “rules” (like The Rede), I do think it influenced some of my practice.

 

JW: What types of interests do you have?

SK: I love the dichotomy of beautiful and creepy when they present themselves as one – like in the “modern” vampire stories: Louis in Interview with a Vampire, or the suave and debonair Bela Lugosi – this beautiful creature that is deadly, so that you’re attracted and repulsed at the same time. That touch of “otherness” is very interesting to me in art and life.

 

JW: Did you feel the pagan world was missing something to make you create your Box?

SK: I think Pagans are pretty crafty folks, so I didn’t reinvent the wheel, but I did put my spin and perspective on my ritual products that are included in the boxes. Sanctus Aqueum (“Holy Water”) was based off of a 19th century recipe for Florida Water. I tweaked the traditional ingredients and added my own touch, and its been a great selling product. Sanctus Oleum (“Holy Oil”) is similar in use to Holy Chrism used in the Church, but with herbs associated with protection in various folk magic traditions. Unguentum Sabatti (“Sabbat Ointment”) was formulated with herbs associated with astral projection, necromancy, and visions to enhance your own intuitive abilities in a more gentle manner than many of the traditional flying ointments.

 

JW: Do you have a site and sell other types of products?

SK: You can find many of our handmade items to purchase on Etsy (etsy.com/shop/alchemyashes). Besides our ritual items mentioned above, we also make handcrafted cold process soaps, perfumes (both oil based and alcohol based), lip balms, herbal powdered incense, and amulets.

We don’t currently do direct sales through our website (alchemyandashes.com)

However, you can always email us your order at alchemyandashes@yahoo.com and we can invoice you and you can pay online.

We’d like to thank Shawnee Kircher for taking the time from her busy schedule to speak with us at PaganPagesOrg and everyone at Alchemy & Ashes for everything! We hope our readers get to meet everyone at Alchemy & Ashes soon!

***

About the Author:

Jennifer Wright is a witch on a path of change that is always winding. She founded PaganPagesOrg in the hopes of giving those a platform to share and learn without judgment. There are too many important things to her and not enough room to mention them. You are one of them.

Worth the Witch

November, 2017

Review of Box of Shadows

 

Box of Shadows is a recurring monthly Pagan Box subscription site. They offer three, very different, types of boxes. Each Box as different and interesting as the next, making choosing one a difficult decision! Their prices range from $24.99 to $44.99 + S/H.

(The Supreme Box by Box of Shadows)

This month I will be reviewing Box of Shadows “The Supreme” Box. At $44.99, it is described as being for the “Advanced Seeker,” based on the wheel of the year.

Arrival Package

(Arrival Photo)

My Box of Shadows came in the mail in an unassuming package. No Pagan graphics or any tells. This I like because I know many who are still in the Broom Closet and receive much of their supplies or goodies through the mail. They do not, however, enjoy seeing packages arrive with huge pentacles, or any type of Pagan symbols on the them.

Opening the Box

As soon as you open your box you are thrown into a feast for a lot of your senses. Your eyes feast on all the wonders in font of you. You automatically want to touch & grab at everything. The beautiful aromas of mints and spices tempt your nose. You feel the need to dive right in. So let’s do just that…

What do we grab first?

The Pamphlet

Box of Shadows sends a pamphlet with each box. Printed on beautiful, good quality paper. The presentation is excellent. The cover of the pamphlet lists the contents in the box. Inside, you will find a good deal on the meaning & history of Samhain, ideal magicks practiced on the holiday, and ways to celebrate. The pamphlet goes on to describe some of the other contents found in the box in detail that have a history, correspondences, or need instructions.

Bundle of Undressed Candles

You are given a nicely wrapped set of 5, different colored Chime candles. I am guessing they are just to have in your supply box to use when needed. You need to know Candle Magick yourself.

While Box of Shadows comes with great background information & a wonderful book, as well (reviewed later in the article), it does not give information (correspondences) on everything. As they state when you purchase the box, it is for the “Advanced Seeker”.

Palo Santo Chips

Large, 1oz Bag comes with full instructions and different uses for the chips written on the back of packaging label. What I appreciated was that, instead of rehashing the information from the packaging, Box of Shadows pamphlet actually gives you more, added information on Palo Santo Chips, that is completely different from packaging. They double your knowledge.

Incense of the Month: Myrrh



1 box of 10 incense cones by HEM. You will need to know Myrrh’s proper usage. Good brand of incense. Well known. Good quality.

Spearmint

Large 1oz Bag. The scent is marvelous. You can smell the freshness. I enjoy the packaging, the look is Victorian to me. There is information on the back of the label on some of the uses of spearmint. The pamphlet, once again, does that wonderful thing of giving added information, different from the packaging, on the herb.

Lapis Lazuli

You are actually given a good sizable stone. It is polished. The shape is pleasing & it fits lovely in the palm of your hand. It has a good weight to it. Will be very nice to work with. It’s correspondences are listed in the pamphlet.

Samhain Votive by Modern Magix

The aroma coming from this votive is heavenly. It is packed with herbs on top and the label lists the exact ingredients you will find on it. What I love about this candle, is that it is a Spell. The wrapper that gives the ingredients, also, gives the instructions on what to do with the candle for the Spell on Samhain. It is awesome.

Gemstone Pendulum

The pendulum feels nice in the hand and is weighted well. The stone is Gorgeous! I just wish I knew what stone it is. The pamphlet gives a wonderful Pendulum Scrying Instructional. It gives you information on what you need to know on how to cleanse, charge, and use your new divinitory tool.

Clarity Spray by Frequency

This is gemstone infused oil. The smell is herby & cleansing. I have never worked with anything like this before & find it interesting and look forward to learning more about it and how I can use it in my workings on a more daily basis. It seems, to me, a good addition to my craft. This item is listed on the table of contents but not described in the pamphlet. Box of Shadows does include the companies business card, however, with a 10% discount coupon.

Altar Cloth

One word “HUGE”!

Okay, more than one word…Beautiful. I was not expecting the delicately folded cloth to open to such a size or have such a wonderful pattern. It is a fantastic altar cloth.

A Copy of the Book “Samhain” by Diana Rajchel

Part of a series of books by Llewellyn that share the history, as well as, the modern information on the sabbat’s of the witch’s year. They give great information in the book, such as; the correspondences for Samhain in the back for quick reference. It has ideas on crafts to make for the holiday which range from fun things like costumes and pumpkin decorating, to Ritual crafts, like making Samhain incense. There are meditations, spells, divination, lore, and so much more packed into this 251 page book. After reading it, there is no way you will not have a clue about Samhain or Halloween!!

(Full Contents of Box of Shadows “The Supreme” Box)

Over All Impression…

Box of Shadows “The Supreme” Box gives you all you need to know about the upcoming Sabbat. Adding the book into the box is a brilliant idea. There is no better way to teach of a Sabbat! Their pamphlet, while it didn’t cover everything, was, I found, extremely excellent on the information it did give. Adding more information then the packaging already had to add to our knowledge. They were generous, they did not hold back on portions/size/volume. The quality of product is definitely there. The freshness of the herb, the brand of the incense. The packaging was on point. The price is phenomenal for all that you get. This box is definitely, well Worth the Witch!

Now just who is behind Box of Shadows? We got a chance to talk with Founder of Box of Shadows Chatonia Underwood

PaganPages(PP): What brought the idea of Box of Shadows to you? 

Chatonia Underwood(CU): I had been studying Wicca for a few years while I was also in college pursuing a Business Administration degree. This was when the subscription box craze had just started to gain popularity. One day a friend mentioned that she wished there was a Birchbox for pagans and all kinds of light bulbs went off in my head. 

PP: How did you begin the process of the subscription?

CU: It was a few years after I had the initial idea that I was finally in a place where I could pursue it. I had done tons of research online about how to start a subscription box business. I spent about a year putting the idea out into the internet to see if anyone would be interested. The response was overwhelming so with a lot of help from Cratejoy, we launched on September 1st, 2015. 

PP: How do you choose what to put inside the boxes?

CU: Brainstorming box contents is one of my favorite parts of running Box of Shadows. We select a theme that each box tier will correspond to and go from there. Supporting the pagan community is important to us so we source most of our inventory from other small, pagan businesses. 

PP: Is Box of Shadows a recurring monthly box subscription?

CU: Yes, Box of Shadows is a monthly recurring subscription. We also offer 3, 6, and 12 month pre-pay plans.  

PP: Are you, yourself a pagan?

CU: Short answer, yes. I consider myself a solitary, eclectic spiritualist. 

PP: What are some of your interests?

CU: I’m a nerd. 🙂 I love comic books and video games. Harry Potter is my favorite book series of all time and I dabble with cosplay. On a more spiritual note, I read tarot and practice yoga (not as much as I should 🙂 ). I love spending time in nature and have recently started studying holistic herbalism. 

PP: Do you sell other products?  

CU: We recently launched the Box of Shadows online shop. There you can find items that were included in previous boxes. As well as, specialty items made by some of our partners and basic supplies (candles, sage, incense, etc.). We hope to be a one stop shop for all of our customers needs. 

I’d like to thank Chatonia Underwood for the lovely interview.

If you are interested in ordering a Box from Box of Shadows or Checking out their site here is some more information on getting in contact with them!

To order your own Box of Shadows  or Find out more information on Box of Shadows online shop check out these links:

Box of Shadows Home Site: http://www.myboxofshadows.com/

Box of Shadows Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/myboxofshadows/

Box of Shadows Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/myboxofshadows/

Box of Shadows Tumblr: http://myboxofshadows.tumblr.com/

***

About the Author:

Jennifer Sacasa-Wright is a Witch and she runs PaganPagesOrg eMagazine.  She loves hearing your opinions & thoughts on the eMagazine and welcomes comments. You can find her email address in the about section.  When she is not working on PaganPagesOrg she is creating in some other way.