Friendship bracelets are often given and worn to symbolize a connection between people. A group or a pair of people can wear matching or complementary bracelets. Sometimes only one is given as a gift. They can be handmade with love or bought with consideration. The very nature of their colorful threads, woven patterns and symbolic meaning I my opinion makes these bits of jewelry one of the most widely accepted forms of magick. What about them isn’t magical? But more on the magic of friendship bracelets later.
I was thinking about friendship bracelets (my friend had just given me one) and I thought why couldn’t we do this with our deities? Spirits? Even elements? Like the idea of a pocket altar, it is taking a bit of them everywhere with you and keeping them close in your mind.
They would be made the same way one for someone else in your life may be made. Obviously the deity, spirit or force will not be wearing one with you, but that doesn’t mean you can’t make matching ones. The second one that you won’t be wearing can be placed on your altar if you have one. If you choose to only make one, offer it up to them. In most cases, depending on your comfort level, whatever you are offering it to will be pleased by this. After all, who doesn’t love to see a friend wearing something you made them?
When making the bracelet(s) there is a huge verity of things that can be done with them. Pick colors that are traditionally theirs or ones that you associate with them. You can also add beads. Beads for prayer, beads for glamor, beads for offerings. The list is endless for the use of beads. Once you have colors (and beads) picked out you can choose from a massive verity of different patterns and techniques to put it all together. The thing I love about this is the range of a simplicity and difficulty which ensures everything is as individual as the one making it and the one it is for. Do what feels right for you!
While assembling it is important to think about the intent behind your bracelet(s) Keep in mind why you are doing this. Put on music that reminds you of them, light candles, pray. Make it as witchy or mundane as you wish.
It is one of the most discreet forms of magick and worship I can think of, so broom closet witches can rejoice! If someone asks about it and you don’t want to fully explain, you can always say that it’s a match with your friend.
Looking for some quick and easy magic for your everyday life? Look no further! Here is a quick list of ways to enchant some everyday accessories.
Sunglasses- For blocking out negativity, shielding you from triggering images, hiding emotions
Prescription glasses/contact lenses: See through lies, see somebody’s true self, enhance perception and awareness
Colored contact lenses: Enchant based on colors (i.e green for seeing money-related opportunities, blue for seeing someone’s true feelings, purple for psychic/empathetic/metaphysical awareness
Hats: Covering up flaws, keeping a “cool head”, suppressing unpleasant thoughts or memories
Visors: See sunglasses uses
Ponytail holder: Enchant based on its color. Tying it into your hair keeps the intent locked into place
Hair flowers or bows: “Dazzling” or distracting people, making you look super kawaii because hair flowers/bows are cute af
Flower crowns: Making you feel like a fucking fairy princess or woodland queen. I don’t care what anyone says man, wear that flower crown because you are mystical af and don’t let anyone tell you otherwise dammit
Necklace/ring/bracelet/earrings w/ crystal or gem (real): Research the gem’s properties and enchant based on that (I have an aquamarine pendant that I enchant to help soothe nerves and anxiety)
Necklace that ties onto the neck: Knot magic!
Statement necklace/bracelet/ring: Making you stand out in the crowd, dazzling or distracting people
Friendship bracelet: Attracting like minded people, knot magic, making you appear more youthful or fun
Purses: Keeping secrets safe
Belts: Keeping you strong/motivated/etc
Have fun enchanting your accessories! If you have any questions, feel free to send me an ask. Thanks for reading,
I always have trouble distinguishing the different maiko hairstyles, especially sakkou and what makes it stand out. Would you mind going over what helps identify sakkou?
Of course I wouldn’t mind! This seems like a good opportunity to make a general post about the most important Maiko-hairstyles, so that is what I’m going to do. I actually have a tab on hairstyles, ut I really need to overhaul that, so it’s probably better that you didn’t look at it ^^’.
The wareshinobu hairstyle
The wareshinobu hairstyle is worn by junior Maiko, Maiko in their first two to three years, who are usually under 18 years old. Usually, junior Maiko are promoted to senior Maiko around the time they become 18, sometimes earlier, when they progress exceptionally quickly in their lessons (like Maiko Fumiyoshi or Mikako, for example).
Maiko Fukutama (Shigemori Okiya) of Miyagawacho showing off a May-ensemble (Source)
Maiko Umehina (Umeno Okiya) of Kamishichiken bowing after performing a dance (Source)
The wareshinobu hairstyle consists of a large bun in the center of the head and two “wings” on either side of the hairstyle, as all Maiko-hairstyles. Into the hairstyle, red fabric is worked into the hairstyle, which peeks out at the top and the bottom of the bun. A red piece of silk is tied into the front of the hairstyle; it’s called chinkoro, and symbolizes that the Maiko is still a child. Maiko also wear a pin on top of the bun, which is not worn in any other hairstyle.
wareshinobu is the wareshinobu hairstyle worn for formal occassions, which includes tortoiseshell-kanzashi instead of regular floral kanzashi and also miokuri, paper strips put into the back under the bun of the hairstyle, which are silver on top and red on the bottom, on the day of a Maiko’s Misedashi.
Maiko Kanako (Kawahisa Okiya) of Miyagawacho on the day of her Misedashi (Source)
The ofuku hairstyle is the everyday-hairstyle worn by senior Maiko, who are generally over 18 years old. It consists of a smaller bun in the center of the head and two wings at each side of the head. However, the bun has somewhat of a triangle-shape and is “open” at the bottom. Onto that bottom, a triangle-shaped piece of cloth, called tegara, is pinned. That tegara is usually red whith a white motif if the Maiko is still younger, but when she gets closer to becoming a Geiko, the colors can change and it can be blue, yellow of light pink. Now-Geiko Katsuhina even wore one of all three colors shortly before switching to the sakkou hairstyle.
Maiko Koharu (Shigemori Okiya) of Miyagawacho showing off a June-ensemble (Source)
Maiko Toshisumi (Komaya Okiya) of Miyagawacho bowing after performing a dance (Source)
Hairstyles for special occassions:
The Yakko Shimada hairstyle
The yakko shimada hairstyle is worn by senior Maiko for special occassions like Shigyoshiki, Setsubun and Hassaku, and is also often worn as a pre-sakkou hairstyle. The last Maiko to do that was Maiko Toshisumi, who just became a Geiko.
It consists of a high bun, similar to that in the wareshinobu and ofuku hairstyle, that only consists of a “half-circle” and ends in a small know that hangs down a little bit. Around the big bun red-and-white cloth similar to that of the tegara, and around the small knot, a small “bracelet” made of green and orange coral.
Maiko Toshisumi (Komaya Okiya) of Miyagawacho wearing the yakko shimada hairstyle as a pre-sakkou hairstyle (Source)
Then-Maiko Katsuna (Daimonji Okiya) of Kamishichiken wearing the yakko shimada hairstyle for Shigyoshiki 2016 (Source)
The Katsuyama Hairstyle
The Katsuyama hairstyle is only worn by senior Maiko during the Gion Matsuri, which takes places every year from July 1st to 24th. It is said that the katsuyama hairstyle was invented by a Tayuu called Katsuyama.
The hair is pulled into a high, long bun, and a silk ribbon similar to that in the yakko shimada hairstyle is worked around it. That silk ribbon is usually red with a white motif, but can also be pink or blue, if the Maiko is very senior. Another characteristic of the hairstyle is the round flower-kanzashi called bon-ten, that is put through the bun and shows on bith sides. Maiko also wear a big silver katsuyama bridge with the hairstyle.
Maiko Umechie (Umeno Okiya) of Kamishichiken in July 2016 during the Gion Matsuri (Source)
Maiko Koyoshi (Shigemori Okiya) of Miyagawacho in July 2016 during the Gion Matsuri 2016 (Source)
The Sakkou hairstyle
The sakkou hairstyle is only worn during the two weeks (sometimes a little bit shorter or longer than that) before a Maiko becomes a Geiko. Sometimes, Maiko are also allowed to wear the hairstyle before leaing the profession - the Kawahisa Okiya of Miyagawacho has a history of letting their girls do that. The sakkou hairstyle used to be worn by young married women.
The sakkou hairstyle is the most complicated of the Maiko hairstyle and is hard to describe, but what I think is the most recognizable about it is the long string of hair draped over the hairstyle and hanging down at the end. During her danpatsu shiki ceremony, a part of that string of hair is cut off, and so are the silver wires keeping the hairstyle in place. Once her hair is free, she is no longer a Maiko.
Also helpful for recognizing is could be that in Gion Higashi, Pontocho, Kamishichiken and Miyagawacho, Maiko wear a completely red collar with it, only in Gion Kobu they wear the ordinary collar of a senior Maiko. And every Maiko wearing the sakkou hairstyle gets to design their own kanzashi, which usually consist of lucky motifs like cranes, pines, turtles, phoenixes, treasure ships etc. and are quite easy to distinguish from ordinary kanzashi.
Maiko Toshisumi (Komaya Okiya) of Miyagawacho wearing the sakkou hairstyle (Source)
Maiko Toshisumi (Komaya Okiya) of Miyagawacho wearing the sakkou hairstyle (Source)
There are even more hairstyles, like the edo sakkou, fukiwa, hime katsuyama, kikugasane, mitsumage, osafune, oshidori no hina, oshirori no mesu, oshun, suisha, umemodoki and yuiwata hairstyle, but these special hairstyles are usually only worn during Setsubun and sometimes as a pre-sakkou hairstyle in Pontocho, so you won’t see them that often.
Many of these hairstyles were also covered in this post made by the blog kamishichiken abou Setsusbun-hairstyles. I’ll add them to my hairstyle-tab over time.
I hope I could help and that this wasn’t too long!
You internally grimaced as the beads of your bracelet annoyingly clinked against the wooden table. Everyone was given one of these bracelets as a child. A name was spelled out in silver bead letters; this name belonged to your supposed soulmate. Yours happened to say “Joshua Dun” on it. The knot tied at the bottom of the bracelet was undoable: every time you would tug on it, the knot would tighten. This stupid bracelet was pissing you off, so you decided to do more research on it at a local Columbus, Ohio library.
Two hours, and nothing. Zero, zip, nada.
You give up. You decided to get up from the wooden table, books you decided to check out in hand, and walk away. You look down at the floor as you try to walk as fast as possible. You let out a squeal and fall backwards as you run in to a body.
“Woah, sorry dude!”
You scramble to your knees, apologizing profusely and attempting to gather your books when you finally look up at the figure you ran in to. He had fair skin, gorgeous brown eyes, bright red-dyed hair and full lips. You could see that he had small, tasteful gauges, an honestly cute nose ring, and a beautiful tattoo on his right arm, which was extended to you. You gently helped yourself up when you noticed the bracelet on his wrist.
“(Y/F/N) (Y/L/N)” it read out, in silver letters.
You gasped slightly, looking on to the man’s eyes. “A-are y-you Joshua Dun?” You asked excitedly. Joshua’s brown eyes widened slightly. “(Y/F/N (Y/L/N)?!” He asked, in an almost begging tone. You nodded. Joshua smiled brightly, and before you could process that you found your soulmate, he had you wrapped in his strong arms. Joshua hugged you tightly, and you hugged him back after setting your books on a nearby table. You felt the knot on your bracelet loosen and it slipped off your (Y/S/C) arm. You heard Joshua whisper something in your ear:
Formed from a hollow hoop fashioned from sheet, convex on the exterior, each end with a collar terminal secured by a pin, its tip with granulation, the collars each with twisted wire filigree palmettes framed by beaded, rope and twisted wires and a fringe of petals, small birds at the outer edges of the left collar, a Heracles knot at the center formed from hollow tubes with applied twisted wire filigree tendrils along their lengths, all edged with beaded, rope and twisted wire, centered by a die-formed lion running to the left, a small frontal Pan seated to the left, playing the pipes.