Sunday, December 12, 2010

Drawing 'Drakes and Robe Rage 2!

Mandragora Madness! Drake Drudgery! Manniken Ma- er... I give up.

Not that long ago I asked Harold Roth of Alchemy Works for permission to do some stylized drawings from photos of his absolutely luscious mandrakes.

For those who have been studiously hiding under rocks for the last five years or more, Harold has been one of very, very, few Practitioners, let alone retailers, successfully growing and selling Mandragora officinarum roots and seeds. His roots are some of the loveliest I've seen anywhere, including the few wild roots I've seen uploaded online.

Since then I've been sketching little bits here and there, anthropomorphizing the forms without taking away the essential "rootness". I'm sure either Harold, or the final owners, could suss their own root's form out of some of the drawings. The whole , original, idea was to use one such drawing to illustrate a forthcoming book of mine - but the project has expanded. The roots are too visually awesome. I've got three done, and several more in the sketch stage. The root on the left is intended to be the illustration in the aforementioned book, but I may settle on the jaunty fellow on the right.

Here's a really poor photo from my phone, with water-marks to deter dirty thieves, who should really know better than to steal anything from a witch. These were done on regular printer paper, with pencil sketches, over which I used Micron pens, and Faber-Castell pitt pens. If anyone I know well enough to trust would like to see larger scans, let me know.

Fully willing to admit the inkwork might be evocative of the Xoanon press artworks. But this is a style I've used and loved for a very long time, prior to even knowing about the existence of Xoanon. All I can say is perhaps, just perhaps, this sorta art is just meant for juju-doings.

The Robe Rage - AGAIN!

Well, I located some fabric, and have begun drafting my pattern. Several things have occurred to me, the main part of which is that I have gained a LOT of weight these last two years. I suppose walking all over Texas in the summer heat did more for my figure than I realized. And I also suppose I was walking far more than I realized. Luckily there is still enough fabric, though once I do trim back down I'll really be swimming in my robe.

I may be borrowing my mother's sewing machine for some of the finishing touches. My machine is a very practical beast, it does strait lines, slightly curved lines, zigzags and buttonholes if I hit it hard enough. Her machine has a hundred little programmed stitch designs, including vines and leaves - of course, her machine is also the most fickle thing I've ever operated. Finishing hems with little dark green vines would be lovely, I must admit.

Final tally is 3 packages of pre-cut 2yrd lengths, and one 5yrd "bolt". There will be enough material to fully sew and line the robe, hood and add pockets. I may have enough spare material to make a lined bag or two, including one to store the robe itself in, and a very large number of small, unlined, rune/tarot bags.


I cut out the robe tonight (12/13), and in dinking myself up a bit, have less fabric than expected, but still enough to finish the project. Remember: If you've told yourself to cut something on a fold, bloody well do what you said and cut it on the fold.


  1. Love the roots. Beautifully done.

  2. Wow, those roots are beautiful! They really capture the spirit. I especially like the middle one with the alchemical "beak" nose. I also like your classy watermark.

    Thank you so much for your very complimentary mention of me in your blog as well. All I can say is shucks. :)

  3. @ Anon - Thanks!
    @Harold - The drawings are beautiful because the roots were beautiful, so thank -you-.
    The watermark is my new "logo" for business transactions of a "hedgewitchy" nature, and will probably fly over my Pagan Pride Day booth.

    Hopefully people will see the drawings and go inquire about roots/seeds! More gardening witches!

  4. Love the root drawings, especially that last one is just wonderful!

    I am SUCH a cheat when it comes to ritual robes-- mostly b/c I practice solitary the majority of the time and don't feel the need for them and only make ritual garb at the last minute for open group rituals when I'm invited. I always go with a Greek/Roman tunic style, no hood, unfortunately, but it *is* quick & easy.