Poppets are small handmade (usually) figurines that can be used as a talisman or in spellwork. Poppets in the popular press tend to be linked with “bad” Witchcraft – the Voodoo doll for instance. And of course there are undoubtedly some who will ignore the Rede’s instructions to “harm none, do what ye will”. But poppets are extremely useful to all witches and the good aspects far outweigh the bad. No witch should be without one!
Poppets come in a variety of shapes, sizes and materials. As always, there is no one right way or wrong way to make a poppet. Nowadays most common poppets are filled with herbs and incense. But pure Witchcraft practitioners will still use the practice of urine, blood, fingernails and hair.
CLAY: The clay should be moulded into poppet shape making sure there is a hollow in which to place hair, herbs, nails etc. before being sealed. Features or symbols can be added at this stage by carving with a sharp object. There is nothing wrong with painting instead if you so wish.
CLOTH: Make a suitable template and use this to cut out two pieces of cloth. Stitch the two pieces together until almost sealed and then stuff with herbs or whatever is required for the spell or talisman. Again the poppet can be adorned with symbols or the name of the recipient.
PAPER: Undoubtedly the quickest way of making a poppet! Simply cut the paper into a figure shape and decorate as you desire. A photograph of the intended recipient can be stuck on if desired. Obviously being made of paper it will not be very hardy and will need to be handles carefully.
ROOT: Several roots such as potato, ginseng, carrot (or almost any suitable vegetable) can be carved into the required shape. This is obviously a poppet that is only suitable for short term use as it will rot quite quickly. Once finished it can be used as required but do not do any additional carving or work on it once you have started to use it.
WAX: wax can be carved into shape but it is probably easier (and certainly less messy) to soften it first and mould it into shape in the same way as clay. Do make sure it’s not too hot to handle first though. Again, leave a hollow for some personal token before adorning.
soften candles and shape them into poppet figurine. Rub lavender oil, or similar onto your hands first for ease, and ensure the wax is not too hot. Use small pieces of coal or gems to adorn the poppet. For a more powerful effect use hair, fingernails, or some token or possession of the recipient.
WOOD: Makes for a very durable poppet. Simply carve the wood into a figure shape and glue on something from the recipient. Woodcarving is not as difficult as it sounds provided you take it slow and be careful. The poppet can be adorned as you see fit using paint, pens, crayons etc.