Have you ever heard of Sage Bundles or Smudge Sticks? Maybe you’re an old hand at it already and have been using Smudge Sticks for years. Or perhaps you’re like me and have heard of them but know nothing about them or their real application.
If that’s the case, today, I intend to change all of that and present to you the facts of the Homemade Sage Bundle – or, more commonly known, Smudge Stick!
I have always called them Sage Bundles or Smudge Sticks, but now I find many other names for them. I’ve ever thought they were merely a ritual for house cleansing after bad dreams or things like that, but it seems they are much, much more.
Although that is part of their functionality, they serve many other purposes, which I’ll explain – in detail – so that you will be able to learn as much as you can about them and their many functions through my research and presentation.
What is Sage?
Sage is one of my favorite herbs when I’m cooking. I use the fresh sage from my garden or the dried sage when it’s out of season. It’s a herb that’s been dried and used for, say, a millennium across global cultures. Sage, however, it’s not just for cooking; it has many uses:
- To clear the air.
- To initiate and the closing of ceremonies.
- To amplify a ritual.
- To bring peace and protection.
- To raise the vibration of any space
Therefore, Sage Bundles are also used for the same above purposes.
It would be best if you primarily used white sage in smudge bundles (though I often have seen the green sage being preferred over the white).
You really can use any Sage.
Add to it different types of herbs that dry well like, say, juniper, lavender, pine, rosemary, cedar, and roses.
After the Bundle has been tried with string and set fire to, the smoke is considered to have fantastic cleansing properties that extend from the physical into the metaphysical realm.
(I have seen people doing this to remove evil spirits from a residence – and other reasons)
How Do you Make a Sage Bundle?
Materials Needed for Floral Sage Smudge Bundle
Making this was an adventure for me, and I admit I initially set about it with some trepidation. However, after a while, my excitement gathered momentum, and I soon became immersed and involved both in the project and the project’s spirit!
All these items are inexpensive (as cheap as chips!), and you can usually find them in your gardens, or at the local farmer’s market, and even at your local grocery store!
To make this specific Bundle, I elected to utilize the following items, all of which I bought at my local farmer’s market.
If you like, you can use a few herbs. The size of your sage bundle is entirely up to you.
- White sage
- Lavender leaves
- Dried rose petals
- Cotton culinary twine
Follow These Easy Steps
Steps to Make a Floral Sage Bundle
Let’s now make a Floral Sage Bundle by following these easy peasy steps – we’ll have it done in no time. Dive in and have fun while you make this exciting Bundle. You’ll get the hang of it very quickly, I think.
Gather some fresh herbs – from your own or your friend’s garden.
Ensure that the stems are flush with the bottom of your hand (or as straight as possible).
You can add to your grouping any flower petals – small roses – or anything that will dry up nicely on top. Lavender flower is also an excellent option for this purpose.
Pick up your string or twine, lay the center point under the thickest stem with a small amount overlapping the column, then circle back. In swirling motions going upwards with a criss-cross pattern, tightly bind the herbs together without crushing the contents.
However, as the herbs will shrink when they are dry, you’ll want to wrap them super tight to ensure the twine stays intact. When you get to the top, make criss-cross spirals down in the opposite direction to make an “X” with the yarn. Then tuck in the extra string left over.
Hang this beautiful Bundle that you’ve made, upside down, for at least a week to about two weeks to dry out.
If there’s still moisture in the leaves, you won’t get a good burn, and you’ll lose the full benefit of the herbs in the Bundle. That Bundle will be fragile and exceptionally stiff to the touch when it’s fully dry.
Now that it’s ready, you can light, cleanse and enjoy!
You must please be careful when handling this lit Sage Bundle. Use a fire-safe bowl when you’re burning your sage floral Bundle. If you’re walking around holding the sage stick, then be sure to keep holding the bowl under the burning sage bundle because the ash could drop embers and could burn anything flammable.
Remember, once you’ve lit this Sage Stick, have the intention for it at the front of your mind as you walk and wave the stick into the corners – always keep the purpose in mind.
Method to make a Sage Bundle
So, you light the tip of the sage wand and allow it to smoke. Move around the room you want to cleanse in a clockwise motion, paying particular attention to the corners where negative energy tends to collect. You can change up the contents of the Bundle and use any of the following:
- Sustainable California white sage, rose petals, hemp cord.
- Sustainable California white sage, Lavender, rose petals, hemp cord.
- Sustainable California white sage, palo santo, rose petals, hemp cord.
- Dimension: 5-6 inches.
Myth, Magic, Manmade but Motivational – or simply Moronic and Moribund
Before continuing, I thought it might be an excellent idea to explain to you how the meaning of these various herbs and plants are perceived amongst those people that frequently use Sage Sticks and Smudge Sticks – who knew!
This plant is probably the most well known and widely loved herb ever! They say that Lavender has many magical uses, including cleansing, purification, psychic protection, increasing clairvoyance, creating the energy of happiness and healing, and tranquillity.
(I always believed that if you sprinkled a few drops on your bed linen, you would sleep well!)
They say it’s a powerful cleanser for your home and your aura and is said to be associated with fire, the sun, and masculine energy. They also say it provides mental clarity, enhances the memory, protects from negative energies, and opens your heart.
(I always believed that it went rather well with lamb and improved the flavor!)
This wood has long been used in temples and burned in sweat lodges, as it is said to have strong purification properties. They say the smoke of burning cedar is said to attract good spirits and eliminate negative ones.
(I like the smell of the freshly cut wood chips placed in a container in a room)
It’s that roses are incredibly magical. They are associated with the Greek Goddess of love and beauty – Aphrodite – and the archetype of Venus. In Egyptian tradition, the rose is also connected to Isis, the Egyptian Goddess of magic, love, and wisdom.
It’s also believed that the rose is a powerful tonic for your heart chakra and helps to make you receptive to giving and receiving unconditional love.
Supposed to help you attract the love you desire, it also connects with the Goddesses above and makes your magic even more powerful. Some say that the rose even attract fairies!
(I’ve always enjoyed the look and smell of a rose but never realized there was more to it)
Sunflowers seem to be happy flowers and most people like them. The world-famous artist Pablo Picasso even painted them, and they have become some of the world’s most treasured and sought after pieces of art!
They say that their vibrant, healing energy makes you happy just from looking at them.
It is believed that Sunflowers are associated with the astrological sign Leo and the element of fire.
Energetically speaking, the sunflower is used:
- to transform negative energy,
- to inspire prophetic or lucid dreams,
- to attract abundance and fertility,
- to protect from negative energy,
- to create relaxed, comfortable happiness like a warm sunny day.
(I’ve always liked the look of them. Both bright and cheerful, these huge flowers bring happiness into any room.)
Each smudge wand comes with its smudging prayer! There are many, and so I’ve chosen not to list them here.
OK, Now That you Have Your Own DIY Sage Bundle!
You probably like the smell of your Sage Bundle, but (strange to relate) not all people do. If you’re cleansing a space, open a window to let the smell waft out onto the breeze and be gone.
A Great Gift
Smudge Sticks (as they are endearingly known), as a great gift to make for friends and family. Once you realize how easy and how much fun it is, you’ll probably find yourself wrapping up all different kinds of herbs and making some lovely combinations.
The practice of ‘smudging’ or ‘to smudge’ has been with us for centuries. It started in the Americas, where this ceremony was practiced on Indigenous people. People would burn a selection of sacred herbs and, in some cases, it was and still is, used for spiritual cleansing or blessing.
While each ceremony’s details and the specific herbs used can vary widely from tribe to tribe of the different nations, many useful forms of sage (common or white sage) and cedar that is local to their region.
Why Smudging Began
‘Smudging’ rituals are well known for their ability to:
- clean energy,
- restore balance,
- banish negativity.
What Smudging Has Become
For several thousands of years, various global cultures have believed that a person’s energy is like perfume. Once you contact someone else’s vibes, good or bad, they tend to linger for a while.
When To Smudge Your House:
Some people like to smudge their house:
- after an argument,
- when their kids bicker or fight
- if they’ve had a stressful day,
- after receiving bad news.
- after hostile visitors have left their negative energies behind
- before someone enters your home and after
- when the energy around you feels stale
- before meditation, yoga, or ritual
- after sickness or conflict
- during the new moon
- when you begin a new job, start your own business, or are starting on a new project
Banish Negativity and Welcome Peace
They regard it as a chance to banish negativity and to welcome peace and clarity.
You might be unfamiliar with this ancient practice, but you’ve probably seen the smudge sticks – those fat leafy bundles of sage – here and there and wondered. People tend to think they are just for people in the wellness industry or things that ‘Hippies’ use.
Not so, because, you’ve now learned, they are a lovely thing to do – to both make and to use.
Burning Sage, or Smudging, is an ancient spiritual ritual. It originated as a Native American cultural or tribal practice, and many other cultures around the world share similar traditions.
I think if you enter into the ritual with an open mind and heart, you could well end up feeling more relaxed or more at peace or whatever the intention was in the first place.
Contrariwise, it could be just the thing you need, to do something different to lighten the monotony of the week.
A Little Whimsy May Be Good for the Soul
Whichever way the cookie crumbles for you, I hope you’ve enjoyed the whimsical trip I took you on, and perhaps some of the experiences will stay with you as cherished memories.