16 March, 2010

Ostara Altar Ideas


I thought my first Ostara post should be about altar ideas.  Whenever I set up my altar, I take my inspiration from the season itself, then I add the traditional symbols of the holiday.

Altar Cloth Colors
Everyone always typically picks pastel colors for spring.  Personally, I cannot stand pastels.  The closest I get to using a pastel is using a pale green for my Ostara altar cloth.  However, draw your own color ideas from what you see outside.  Another color I tend to use is violet because it is the color of the tulips outside of my house and they are the first flowers I see in spring.  You can do the same at your house.  Don't remember which color flowers come up first?  Then go with whatever color feels right to you.

I also tend to decorate my altar with plants and/or flowers which reflect the season.  Tulips and Daffodils are early spring flowers and I will often use them in my set up.  Plus, if you'd like to get really symbolic, they both look like phallic symbols (tulips representing female; daffodils representing male). 

Spring Symbols
Growing up a Catholic, there were always egg and bunny decorations all over my house.  They are still there since I still live with my parents (I'm married too - imagine how much fun that is!). Interestingly enough, none of the decorations my mother has put up this year say "Happy Easter," but say "Happy Spring" instead.  Now to your altar.  Because this time of year was always rabbits and eggs, I continue the same theme on my altar.  The Christmas Tree Shoppe has tons of cheap, cute holiday decorations.  I highly recommend taking a stop in there if you have a store near you.  You can also make many of your own decorations.  I still color hard boiled eggs and place them on the altar.  I'm still working on Earth friendly, home-made dyes.  If they don't work out, food coloring and vinegar still works.  After my ritual, I put them back in the fridge for breakfast the next morning.  

                   Other Home-made Altar Ideas: These are all great, especially if you have little ones.
Other Items You May Want to Include:
Honey and Milk are also spring symbols and you may want to include a glass of one or both on your altar.  Milk is obviously a symbol of fertility and motherhood.  You can pour the glass of milk outside as a gift (much like an Imbolc ritual) or offering to the Lord and the Lady or to the Fae.  Honey is a symbol of abundance.  Spring is a time that is abundant with life both physically and metaphorically.  The honey can be used later in cakes and wine or as part of an Ostara dinner or even in a nice cup of herbal tea.

I hope everyone enjoys these ideas!


Catpriestess said...

I'm with you Willow, not crazy about the pukey pastel colors, lol..I love the violets of the crocus' and the bright yellow of the daffodils, both beautiful in a combo. together. I'm going to check out a local xmas tree shop for fun decorations. Good ideas : )

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