One of my favorite areas of the shop is our little altar.

Maybe you’ve seen it the last time you visited. It’s set inside a little hutch and displays a collection of candles, stones, and other magickally charged items that bring us joy and remind us of our connection to the universe.

It’s also where we collect your wishes and prayers to burn at every full moon!

Altars are important tools for spiritual or magickal practice. It’s often where people start when they want to bring more meaning and mindfulness into their lives. But sometimes it can seem a little scary when you’re first starting out, not knowing how to build one or how to use it.

Luckily, we’re here to help!

What is an altar?

An altar is a place of energy and power within your home.

It can be a space to meditate, honor sacred things, manifest your desires, cast spells, say prayers to your ancestors, or practice other spiritual or religious activities.

Religions throughout history and all around the world have used altars, both simple and elaborate, to accompany their practices.

But it doesn’t have to be a religious tool! Think of your altar more like a “spiritual work space” where you can go to be mindful and focus on your goals and your journey through life.

It’s just like setting up a decorative shelf or table in your home with pictures and knick knacks – but with a spiritual intention!

What types of altars are there?

You can have an altar for any purpose that brings you joy and energy. 

Some altars are dedicated to ancestors, deities, spirit guides, or other religious figures. Some are set up for short times for specific intentions. You could set up a temporary altar for a holiday celebration, or even change up a more permanent one with the seasons (like we do!).

The most important thing is that the altar be a space you feel comfortable at. It should connect you to your spirituality and include things that you use in your magick or make you feel powerful.

And speaking of items on your altar…

What do you put on an altar?

The first, and most important, rule of decorating your altar is to include items that are useful and special to you. That’s it!

But if you like a little more guidance, here’s a good list to start with:

  • Candles
  • Incense
  • Pictures of ancestors
  • Plants, flowers, herbs
  • Stones and crystals
  • Statues and representations
  • Items to represent the four elements (earth, air, fire, water) - or whatever elemental structure you use
  • Items from nature

This absolutely doesn’t cover it all; what other items do you include on your altars? Send us a picture of your own altar spaces on any of our socials or email us! 

What do you do with an altar?

Think of the way you feel when you walk into a room that’s been cleansed and charged and is used for a deeply spiritual purpose. There’s a sense of peace in your heart and a grounded, calm energy in the atmosphere. This is called “sacred space”.

Altars are just sacred space, but set up with tools and items in a specific way so you can use the sacred space for whatever you want.

Need to manifest a desire? Do you want to communicate with your ancestors? Feeling a pull to observe and honor the changing of the seasons? Or are you just looking for a quiet, special space to spend some mindful moments in throughout your day?

Altars can be used for all these, and more. You’re only limited by your imagination.

Where will you start?

We’ll be talking about altars all month long, from ideas and inspo, to what to do with them, to altars that work for your unique home and family. If you have a question about your altar, we probably have an answer!

If you want a little more dedicated guidance on setting up your own altars, stop in to the shop to chat with one of our knowledgeable staff, or consider signing up for our Altars & Sacred Space class coming on May 9th.

And remember: we’d love to hear - and see! - all about your own altars. Leave a comment below or reach out!

~ Angela

Angela Messier
Tagged: Altars


I have two. One is indoors on an old dry-sink table that has always been special to me. The other is a dedicated area outside where I keep a large cast-iron oven for safe fire magick, candles, figures, and offerings. I also frequently set up a temporary cloth and tools wherever I feel like it! ;)

— Jess