Wednesday, October 7, 2015

Announcing "The Witch's Mirror" by Mickie Mueller

Last year around this time I had an opportunity to submit a proposal for a book in Llewellyn's Witch's Tools series, a book about magical mirrors! I was intrigued. I have used mirrors in my practice from time to time, both black scrying mirrors and silver mirrors to reflect negativity away, multiply abundance, or boost candle magic; so I dug into the topic wholeheartedly.

As I worked on writing the proposal and eventually the manuscript, lots of connections with mirrors came to mind. I remembered all those nights playing Bloody Mary with my friends, the time I used a mirror meditation to help me recover from a difficult divorce, I even thought about my grandfather who was a highly respected craftsman of telescope mirrors in his day. Mirrors he crafted were in telescopes in every state in the United States. I thought he would approve of my project.

The Witch's Mirror is available for pre-order and will be out June 8 2016 Click here for the Amazon listing. 
Isn't this cover a hoot?! I'm so pleased with how it came out! My fantastic editor Elysia Gallo and I came up with the basic concept and gave our ideas to cover illustrator John Kachik and let his creativity reign supreme. I'm delighted with the results!  As an illustrator myself, it was important to me to hand him the concept and then step way back and respect his process, seeing the magic he worked, it was well worth it.

I had a lot of fun working on this book, I can't wait to share it with you.  I've included folklore and pop culture regarding mirrors, spells for just about every purpose using mirrors, mirror washes and condensers, meditations, where to find magic mirrors, even instructions on how to make many of your own mirrors for specific purposes.  Even if you've never used mirrors for magic, you will find some kind of wonderful use within these pages to inspire you to look at mirrors in a whole new way.

This is an actual mirror that I made as part of this book, and yes, I have included instructions for making your own, it's easier than you might think to create this oeil de sorciere, a special kind of convex witch's mirror!

The Witch's Mirror is the fourth book in Llewellyn's The Magical Tools Series proceeded by The Witch's Broom by Deborah Blake, The Witch's Wand by Alferian Gwydion MacLir, and The Witch's Athame by Jason Mankey.  I have enjoyed the honor of illustrating the interiors of all of these books, and I'll be illustration my own, and the rest in the series as well.  The beautiful cover art for all of these books was created by the talented and inspiring John Kachik, and the book cover design is by the amazing Lisa Novak.
A scrying mirror I made ages ago, it ended up in a good home of one of our Etsy friends.

Like the rest of the books in this series, there are brief contributions by other authors who talk about their personal uses of each tool and The Witch's Mirror is no exception.  I was so happy to have Raven Digitalis, Melanie Marquis, Blake Octavian Blair, Natalie Zaman, Lisa Allen Calantriniel, Charlynn Walls, Autumn Damiana, David Salisbury, Michael Furie, and Judika Illes all share their personal uses of magic mirrors in the "Reflections of Real Witches" segments sprinkled throughout this book.
This is one of my Witch's Mirrors, it lives above my old wooden art table. It belonged to my grandpa and before that it was on his family farm where he grew up. So what is its magic you ask? It has three purposes, one is that it multiplies the magic that happens on top of my art table altar, the second is for feng shui since my back is to the front door it reflects behind me keeping power at my desk. The third thing this mirror does is remind me of where I come from and brings the energy of my ancestors forward with me in my path in life

I still have to create the illustrations for this book, I have lots of mirror crafts to show you; jewelry, enchanted mirrors, candle holders, mirrored items and more.
Occasionally I make these one of a kind hexenspiegel charms and sell them in my Etsy shop.  A hexenspiegel is a special mirror carried on the person or displayed in the home to shield the user from the evil eye and all forms of negative energy, and yes, instructions for creating your own hexenspiegels and enchanting them are also included in The Witch's Mirror.

The art of looking glass magic puts you in touch with your own spirit and gives you new ways to manifest abundance, protection, glamour, healing, and divination among many other magical uses. Would you like to know how to find, create, and use magical mirrors for scrying, spells, amulets, and more? With the secrets of the witch's mirror at your fingertips, gaze into your own magical mirror, what will you discover?

A portable mirror can also be enchanted for all kinds of magic it's really a versatile powerhouse for any kind of spell work.

Watch for The Witch's Mirror in bookstores everywhere June 8, 2016, among the first to explore the secrets of The Witch's Mirror when it comes out and pre-order here:

Blessed Be!


Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Llewellyn's Sabbat Essentials: Mabon

It's the Autumn Equinox, and amongst the many things that I'm acknowledging gratitude for today is the box full of books I illustrated that came in the mail from Llewellyn last week! Today I thought it would be appropriate to share the Llewellyn's Sabbat Essentials book Mabon by Diana Rajchel!

I currently have a crystal grid set up, so instead of my usual seasonal altar, I added my Mabon items around the grid so as not to disturb it. Included is an electric candle and wrap made by my mom, you can see more of her work at 

Apples hanging out among the crystals will become some kind of dessert later.

This is the chapter opener for the "Old Ways" chapter where Diana discusses old Traditions celebrating the harvest.

Last year when I was working on these illustrations I was cracking up watching the squirrels running across the yard harvesting acorns, so I had to include one in the "New Ways" chapter opener.

I loved her description of the scarecrow from the crafts section, this guy was fun to draw with his dismayed expression.

The lovely Demeter with many other magical correspondences grace this page.
I love the crow on the cover, the cover art was designed by the talented Kevin R. Brown.

I hope you enjoyed this peek into Mabon from the Llewellyn's Sabbats Essentials.  Think mindfully about all that you're grateful for today, thank the Universe, and appreciate all the little things in life. The world is a magical place!

Blessed Be!

Thursday, June 18, 2015

Llewellyn's Midsummer Book on my Midsummer Altar

Midsummer, it's the longest day of the year, the point when the sun is at it's zenith, the Summer Solstice, and a magical in between time, this year it falls on June 20th.  It's also called Litha. I've got my Midsummer altar all set up and ready for honoring this significant stop on the Pagan wheel of the year. Even though it's been a rainy week, (forgive my low-light photos) my Midsummer altar is brightening up the place and radiating out Summer energy into my home when I need it the most.
My Midsummer altar all dressed up with my God and Goddess candle statues.

I'm so happy to have my copy of Midsummer by Deborah Blake, the latest release in the Llewellyn's Sabbat Essentials series.   I've discovered that these little books are simply a perfect addition to my Wheel of the Year altar, I'm keeping the set nearby as a reminder of the cycles of the earth and I'm placing the current Sabbat book on the altar for easy reference and inspiration, plus they really look pretty! 
My mom Amanda Bryant of Frogbirds House started making these lovely sets with an altar cloth and electric candle wrap for each sabbat, I love these!  This one features a beautiful bright sun on a blue sky, I hope it's magic summons up blue skies here!  Want your own? Click here
I was inspired by both Deborah Blake's correspondences list in the Midsummer book and what is in bloom right now in the fields here at Aelfheim.  I made a bouquet in the cup from my Celtic Faeries Tea For One set and used my grandmother's antique owl "flower frog" to prop the flowers up.  I included two kinds of wild daisies, queen Annes lace, rosemary sprigs and lavender. Grandma often created fresh flower bouquets and included fresh herbs, so she would approve.  I'm watching for the St. Johns Wort to bloom so I can add some.  
One of my illustrations for the "Old Ways chapter in which Deborah explores old Summer Solstice traditions and practices.
My illustration for the "New Ways" chapter. Witchy Summer Solstice curb appeal introduces this chapter full of modern ways to celebrate.
I'm stuck with store-bought tomatoes until my are ripe, but Deborah included a recipe for a chocolate tomato cake using green tomatoes which sounds intriguing, and there are some on the vine! I'm going to try her rosemary shortbread cookies for my Midsummer night cakes and ale!
The correspondences section, full of inspiration!

I hope you enjoyed visiting my Midsummer altar, may you enjoy the Summer Solstice as you grow abundance, and perhaps have a Midsummer Night's Dream!

Llewellyn Sabbat Essentials Midsummer by Deborah Blake (illustrated by lil' ole me!)
God and Goddess Statues by Sacred Source designed by Mickie Mueller
Altar Cloth and Electric Candle wrap by Frogbirds House (my mom!)
Celtic Tree FaeriesTea for One Set by Mickie Mueller Studio

Blessed Be!


Tuesday, June 9, 2015

Stop! Don't Toss Those Radish Greens,They're Delish!

Fellow gardeners, have I got a treat for you, this will seriously change your life.  When you harvest those lovely radishes this summer and you cut off all those pretty green leaves, don't toss them in the trash can or compost, I have a much better use.  You work hard to grow your produce, watering, weeding, encouraging, so why wast a bit if you don't have to?

It all started for me when I watched the indie movie Chef on Netflix directed by and starring Jon Fareau (which I highly recommend.) Near the beginning of the film, Chef Carl goes to the market to get fresh produce for the restaurant where he works and he tells the produce guy that he wants fresh radishes with the tops still on, "I use those." What?  I wondered what do you use them for?  I was intrigued.
Chef Carl at the produce market with his son in the indie film Chef.

So when the radishes in the garden were ready to harvest, I remembered the statement and just googled, "radish greens recipes."  Wow! You can make all kinds of dishes with radish greens, so I saved them in a plastic bag and tossed them into the crisper drawer instead of the compost, feeling very proud of myself for not being wasteful. Radish leaves contain more fiber, vitamin C and protein than those pretty red roots do, and the roots are pretty good for you, so that's saying a lot!  Here's more info on the health benefits of radishes, both the roots and leaves, click here.

Tonight, I picked up one of those roasted chickens from the grocery store, it's a quick and easy dinner when I have lots of work to do.  With two book illustration jobs and revisions for my upcoming book all due around the first of the month, I like easy.  Then I remembered those radish greens...

So I looked up some recipes online, and I created this version based on what I had in the house...I must say, it's a new family favorite!  We'll never toss those radish greens again!  I hope you enjoy this one as much as my family did.

Tossing the potatoes and radish greens in the pan.

Sauteed Potatoes and Radish Greens

I've included the magical folklore uses for all you kitchen witches out there.  This is a great happy home recipe, not only does it taste wonderful, but if made with magical intention it's ingredients will fill you with blessings and keep negativity, envy, and gossip away from your dinner table.


3 cups chopped radish greens, be sure to rinse them before you chop (fire energy, defends against the evil eye, induces passion)
1 medium onion halved and sliced thin (the moon, healing, hex breaking)
2 cups of diced red potatoes with the skin on (primal earth energy, manifestation)
1 pinch of turmeric (purification, courage)
1/4 tsp powdered cayenne pepper (breaks up negative energy and hexes, promotes love and passion)
fresh cracked pepper to taste (breaks up negative energy and hexes, stops envy)
sea salt to taste (blessing and protection and purification)
2 tablespoons olive oil (divine favor, associated with Athena)
1 pinch of sugar (dispels evil, sweetens the family life)
balsamic vinegar to flavor, I used about a tsp. (fire energy, breaks up baneful energy and gossip)

In a skillet, heat the oil and saute the onions until slightly transparent.  Add potatoes, salt, pepper, turmeric, and cayenne and toss.  Reduce the heat and cover, cook until the potatoes are soft.
Add chopped radish greens, toss to combine with potatoes and onions, cover and cook about 5 minutes until the leaves have wilted. Sprinkle with a pinch of sugar and balsamic vinegar, toss and enjoy as a side dish or serve with on warm tortillas and feta cheese.

Our radish harvest!

If you love this recipe just google "radish greens recipes" There are a ton of uses for this healthy green, I plan to try more recipes myself.

Blessed Be!


Monday, June 1, 2015

Growing Pains for Mickie Mueller Studio

I have an important announcement today for my dearest St. Louis and Illinois area Pagans. Due to scheduling with my upcoming publishing deadlines we're not going to be able to prepare for vending at Pagan Picnic this year, so it's with deepest regrets that I'm announcing that our booth will be absent this year. We are donating some awesome items to the raffle though, see the pics in this post. If you're in the area for Pagan Picnic, make sure you pick up a few raffle tickets, it helps the community and you might win one of these items pictured here, or many other pretties donated by the generous Pagan artisans and vendors in the St. Louis area. 
We are going to try to take a day off from all of my current work to attend so we can at least see everyone, after all selling art is only part of why we go to Pagan Picnic, a big part of it is community, sharing, seeing friends, and the magic of the weekend! Gods willing, we will be vending again next year.
This year we're doing some of the biggest and best donations that we've ever had for the raffle booth!

I think this will be the first Picnic we've missed in about 20 years, we love the event and the community so much, this was one of the hardest decisions Dan and I have ever had to make. 
Among our donations; a Mystical Cats Tarot purse, Swirling leaves pentacle necklace and earrings, Greenman and Greenwoman sconces I designed for Sacred Source.

We've always worked hard to grow our art business slow and steady so that we could always keep up with demand, but this year was an unusually busy year for the publishing end. I had many unexpected opportunities come my way both illustrating many books (more than I've ever had before) and I’m also working on revisions for my upcoming book that I've written. 
More donations include two Llewellyn periodicals that I have articles in 2015 Witches' Companion & 2015 Magical Almanac and Dryad Spirit tea for one.

At this point, vending at Picnic would mean my deadlines wouldn't be able to be met, that's just not an option. We're doubly disappointed because we planned to share booth space with my mom Amanda Bryant of Amanda Bryant's House of Frogbird, we were really excited to let you see her magical embroidered flameless candles in person! Watch for a donation from her at the raffle booth as well. My mom is awesome!
Dan made this Hecate wall sconce up just for a Pagan Picnic donation, we're also donating this set of 8 Sabbat ornaments from The Hidden Path and a Greenman Stein.

It's an exciting new phase for us, but it has it's growing pains as well. We're so sorry to cancel and we hope you can bear with us while we get ourselves acclimated to the changes this year as we explore new paths and create new magic for everyone.



Saturday, May 2, 2015

Sneak a Peek at the Beltane Llewellyn Sabbat Essentials Book

I was working like a mad woman to finish up the book I've been writing by the deadline and Beltane kind of crept up on me. Thankfully two great women had my back, my mom Amanda Bryant of FrogBirdsHouse and author Melanie Marquis, the author of Beltane in the Llewellyn Sabbat Essentials series. I actually finished writing my manuscript on Beltane, emailed it off to my editor, and began flipping through my Beltane book for some quick inspiration to celebrate the day! Do you want a peek inside this awesome little book...for you, anything!

Mom has been embroidering these awesome sabbat sets of altar cloths and electric candle wraps. (click here to see more of her work) I was so happy with the Beltane set, I love a good bonfire, so this depiction for Beltane was perfect! I set up my altar with the lovely set, added my God and Goddess candle holder/statues from Sacred Source, and looked up quick correspondences for Beltane that Melanie Marquis added to the back of the Beltane book to finish decorating! 

I just love the covers for this series, designed by Kevin R. Brown, I can't wait to have the whole series, it's going to look gorgeous sitting on the bookshelf! 
The book goes into the "old ways" traditions as they've been celebrated in the past.  I just had to include a bonfire and maypole in this illustration beyond the old time witches gate to her cottage.

For the "new ways" section I illustrated the modern witches entrance, including Melanies mini tabletop maypole in the window, a modern torch for the Beltane flame outside, and of course a faerie garden statue to represent the faerie legends surrounding Beltane.
The recipes and crafts section is awesome!  I've decided I'm just going to celebrate the season of Beltane, going beyond just the day, that way I can enjoy some of her awesome recipes. Blessed Lemon Custard, Sexy Rosemary and Garlic-Roasted Asparagus, and Magical May Wine...yes please!!
Ok, I just had to share a shot of this set my mom made for my Wheel of the Year altar!  I love how the light of the electric candle shines though the candle wraps she makes, and these new altar cloths are so cool! She has some really nice candle wraps and stuff over at FrogBirdsHouse
I loved her description of the Mini Tabletop Maypole, it was really fun to illustrate!
I love the correspondences sections in these books, a super quick and easy reference guide for witches on the go!

After flipping through the book Beltane I found the inspiration I was looking for, and also having recently read Deborah Blake's new book Everyday Witchcraft, I decided a quick Beltane ritual and offering to the Fae would be just the thing after finishing up writing my first stand-alone book on this auspicious day.  I ventured deep into the fields of our home at Aelfheim with a small dish of wine, bread with real butter and honey in a wooden dish, a red, white, and black cloutie to tie to my wishing tree, and a solar lantern to light the way.  The moon is close to full now, so the landscape was illuminated with a milky light.  I reached the stump that I use as an altar and set my offerings and the solar lantern upon it.  Taking a moment to take in the beauty of Aelfheim at night, I was simply in awe and speechless for quite some time.  I spoke to the spirits of the land from my heart offering thanks for their constant blessing and inspiration as I made my offering to them.  When I was ready, I tied my cloutie to the tree as I made a wish (sorry, can't tell) then I made my way back to the house.  I tried to snap a photo, but there was just no way to capture the glow of the moonlight, lantern, and the magic all around my outdoor temple amongst the trees, so this description will have to suffice.

I hope you had a blessed Beltane and that you enjoyed getting a peek at my Beltane author and the illustrations inside Llewellyn's new Sabbat Essentials series Beltane book.  I can't wait to get my Midsummer one in the mail! Speaking of Deborah Blake, she wrote that one, Can't wait!

Blessed Be!


Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Top 5 Gift Ideas for a Magical Mother's Day

We've been working on some great Mother's Day ideas over at the Mickie Mueller Studio! Here are our top 5 gift ideas using pretties featuring magical art handmade by Dan and I and a few creative additions to turn a simple gift into a magical Mother's Day celebration!

Everyone knows moms love gifts from the heart, how many years did she get breakfast in bed that included burnt toast, runny eggs, and maybe a salad or peanut butter.  She's received bouquets of dandelions, hand painted rocks, candles made from a whole box of crayons, and she loved every single one of them.  But we've all matured a bit and now our gifts from the heart may have become a bit more sophisticated, but they still have just as much heart!  We'll help you make a lovely gift basket Mom will just love, we can provide magical gifts from our studio, just add a pretty basket and a few other inexpensive items to create your own hand crafted gift basket.  It's not burn toast, but she'll love it all the same!

1. Tea For One Gift Basket
You can get one of our lovely Café Style Tea for One teapot and teacup sets from our Etsy shop. This all porcelain set includes a 20 oz. teapot with a dome shaped lid and a 12 oz. tea cup. The tea-for-one set is perfect for enjoying two generous cups of tea. Add it to a decorative basket and include some fancy teas, a tea ball, and some chocolates, cookies, or biscotti. How about adding an electric candle warmer, they work perfectly for keeping your teapot warm. Mom will have a perfect excuse to relax with a cup of tea or two any time.
Gift Set Inspiration: Tea for One Celtic Fairies set from Mickie Mueller Studio, Goddess Tea Ball from Amitea Organics, Tea from Celestial Seasonings and Traditional Medicinals, Dark Chocolate Coated Butter Cookies and Hazelnut Chocolate from Aldi, antique silver spoon, thrifted

2. Goddess of Beauty Set
We put these goodies in a star shaped bowl we had around the house, get creative with containers, you'll never know what you'll find. This set was inspired by our matching Triple Goddess compact mirror and crystal glass nail file. With Triple Goddess art heat pressed right in our studio onto a sublimation insert mounted on top of this beautiful compact,she'll really make a statement while checking her hair or makeup. This crystal glass nail file is the ideal tool to keep your smooth and flawless manicure. These files are gentle and don't leave rough edges on your nails. Crystal glass nail files glide across the nail sealing the tip as they file. This crystal glass nail file is also Eco friendly because it never gets dull and ends up in a landfill. After use just run this little gem under water, and it's good as new!  Add a couple bottles of nail polish and some lip gloss. I included a pumice stone, pedicure kit, and one of those cool stick-on nail polish kits too.  She'll feel like a pampered Goddess with a set like this!
Gift Set Inspiration: Triple Goddess Crystal Glass Nail File and Compact mirror from Mickie Mueller Studio, Nail Polish Wet n Wild Fastdry, Sally Hanson Salon Effects Appliques, pumice and pedicure set from a local Dollar Store.

3. Gardening Momma Set 
If you have a mom that loves to garden like I do, our travel mug is a perfect inspiration for a gift set. I know, she's gardening, not traveling, right?  My mom and I love using these travel mugs to help us stay hydrated while working in the garden, the little top slides open and closed with ease keeping dirt, bees, and stray ladybugs out of your drink.  I packed it up inside a fancy carved and hand painted gourd, but a garden planter would also be nice.  You can include Mom's favorite seeds, garden markers, a trowel, cultivator, some fresh new garden gloves, and maybe some individual flavored drink mixes.  She'll thank you every time she's working in the garden and enjoying her bug-free beverage.
Gift Set Inspiration: Polymer fairy art travel mug from Mickie Mueller Studio, seeds from Lowes, Crystal Light Pure drink mixes acquired on clearance at Town and Country grocery store, the local dollar store was the mother-load, I found garden gloves, trowel, cultivator, and some outdoor led firefly lights.  Oh, and a little pot of flowers found on the clearance rack at Lowes.

4. Shield Maiden Jewelry
Perhaps your mom is a shield maiden or a history fan, so many of us are! Kick ass ladies need some kick ass jewelry, so we created a set of mother of pearl earrings and a pendant featuring a Vegviser Viking Compass. The Viking compass is a magical symbol for protection while traveling, it can be used for both literal travel, or figuratively, as we travel on our journey through life in uncharted waters. This shimmering natural Mother of Pearl amulets pearlescent surface lends itself particularly well to this magical art. The image was hand drawn at my old wooden art table, then we print the image using dye sublimation ink right in our studio and then heat press it onto the surface of these specially coated shells, the iridescence is lovely on this amulet can be seen through the art.  They're great on their own, but I though for a gift what they really needed was a box.  This fancy gift box, yep it was only $1.00!  I found a box meant for gift cards, I pulled out the insert, put a few perfectly placed holes in it and it was magically transformed into a lovely presentation box for this cool jewelry set.
Gift Set Inspiration: Vegviser Viking Compass earrings and pendant, sold separately at Mickie Mueller Studio, gift box, found at my local dollar store, it's a gift card box with holes added by me to display the jewelry in style.    

5. Mystical Cat Coffee Mug Bouquet
You've seen these at florists both brick and mortar shops and online. They're not cheap, and the mugs, well, they're ok, but you could make your own bouquet for a fraction of the cost in a magical mug that she'll treasure long after the flowers fade. All you need is a little floral foam, an inexpensive bouquet of flowers, a bit of moss, and a coffee mug, I suggest, The Cat (The Fool) from Mystical Cats Tarot this is one magical mug! Mom will enjoy her coffee or other brew of your choice in this generous 15 oz ceramic coffee mug. This design is printed right in my studio and hand pressed permanently into the surface of the ceramic mug. Yep, it's both microwave and dishwasher safe. We've had many proud owners of these mugs praise how beautiful they are and well they heat up drinks in the microwave without the handle getting hot. We hate when that happens, so we LOVE these mugs! Here's how mine turned out, be sure to check out the easy directions below...
Mug Bouquet Inspiration: "The Cat/The Fool" from Mystical Cats Tarot Mug available at the Mystical Cats Tarot Etsy shop, more mugs can be found at Mickie Mueller Studio.  Floral foam and moss came from the local dollar store, the fresh flowers were from Aldi 

I thought you might want to see the step-by step on this one...
Make sure your floral foam is the kind meant to be used with water, it will say "wet" on the package.  Trim the foam with a knife so it fits in the mug and soak it in water for a couple minutes.  Fill the mug from top to bottom with  a couple chunks of wet floral foam. cover the top with a bit of moss.  Trim your flowers and be sure to strip off the leaves from the bottom of the stems.  Start poking the flowers into the foam in an eye pleasing design until you have it nice and full.  
I hope you enjoyed these ideas for jazzing up magical art gifts and making them even more awesome by adding your own touches.  I bet you could come up with some great ideas in addition to these. If you need more inspiration, drop by our Etsy shops and see what comes to mind.  Don't forget, Mother's Day this year is Sunday May 10, 2015.  Mom will feel very special with her magical and thoughtful gift from the heart, and maybe these ideas will give you some inspiration for other gifts throughout the year.

Links to our Etsy shops:
Mickie Mueller Studio
Mystical Cats Tarot 
Voice of the Trees

Blessed Be!

Mickie Mueller