Needles are common objects that have been used in hoodoo since before anyone can remember. They are often referred to in older texts on the subject as “golden eye needles”, probably because those pretty needles with the gold colored tips became affordable during the first part of the 20th century. Needles are used in many forms of root work, particularly but not exclusively in jinxing and throwing tricks.
It probably goes without saying that needles are used to carve names and symbols in candles. This practice, along with dressing the candle with oil, helps to focus the root worker’s attention and ensure a better outcome for the candle burning ritual.
Needles can be used singly or in groups in “doll baby” magick where a doll is used as a representation of an enemy or lost or potential lover. The needles are used not only to sew up the doll (what in Wicca is often referred to as a “poppet”) but also to spear it in strategic places. Done correctly, this practice will bring either physical pain to the enemy or heartache and longing to the wished-for lover.
If a root worker is sewing up a mojo bag, they will of course use a needle and hand sewing is always preferred. The needle can be dressed with a specific oil that goes along with the intended use of the mojo. In the antebellum South, rumor had it that slaves who were employed as tailors and seamstresses might empower their needles for harm or good, depending on what they were sewing, and for whom.
Small sharp and potentially dangerous items, including needles, are also key ingredients in the protective working known as a witch bottle. We discussed the making of these very effective personal guardians last March.
Don’t underestimate your needles; they are tools not only for creating beauty but for bringing – and keeping – harmony in your life. Bonne chance ~
Header: Girl at a Sewing Machine by Edward Hopper c 1921