What is Imbolc?
Imbolc is one of the four fire festivals in the Wheel of the Year. It’s a celebration of the goddess Brigid and the new beginnings that come with spring. I define it more as a celebration of thawing. It’s the midpoint mark between winter and spring, where the ground is becoming softer and fertile.
How to celebrate?
There is no right or wrong way to celebrate Imbolc. You don’t have to celebrate at all if your heart doesnt desire to. But if you do, here are a few simple things:
- Cleansing. Whether you clean up your home, your body, or your mind, the festival of new beginnings is just about the perfect time to do so. Take an evening to cleanse your space. Plan a bath ritual. (Shameless plug: Imbolc bath salts can be found here on my Etsy.)
- Fire. As mentioned above, Imbolc is a fire festival. I see it as a symbol for the warming of the earth and how the sun will begin to show more often. You can take this time to light a candle or two, or set out to burn a log.
- Bake or Make. A very familiar symbol with Imbolc is Brigid’s Cross. Many choose to make their own out of reeds, straw, and even construction paper. Crafts not really your thing? No problem! Bake up some bread and weave it into the cross instead. There are many tutorials online, one of my favorites is this one.
- Decorate an Altar. If you have an altar already set up, give it a dusting and lay upon it flowers and seeds, a green or white candle (or two) and a corn dolly or Brigid’s Cross. Don’t have an altar? Grab a bowl, fill it with white salt, flowers or buds, and a small candle. An altar in a bowl is perfect for those with limited space or those who need something more low energy.
Need something on the downlow?
When I was in the broom closet, my favorite way of celebrating the Sabbats was through baking. The cake I chose for Imbolc? A lemon and poppy seed with a frosted glaze on top. As your mixing the ingredients, think of your intentions, what the Sabbat means to you, and draw sigils that you connect with. Serve with some tea and call it a party.
- Plan outfits with corresponding colours. White, green, brown, flowery patterns.
- Diffuse a blend of lavender, jasmine, or citrus.
- Tidy up your room and plant some seeds.
Imbolc doesn’t need to be this eye-catching celebration. It’s whatever you can do and want to do. It’s a perfect time for reflection and to look forward to what new adventures await. Show yourself some love during this Sabbat (and maybe eat a muffin.)