the elfin alchemy flower design and how it links to witchcraft

I create with wire, pretty 6-petal flower earrings, and was quite stunned to discover all the symbolism and history behind their design.

This story begins back in 2006 when I was studying silversmithing part-time at college and came across a flower bracelet design in a jewellery making book. Something drew me to this particular flower shape and inspired me to want to create my own version of it. I hadn’t an inkling of the fascinating journey it would take me on, first making my own 6-petal flower design and secondly the voyage of discovery that would unfold as I learnt more about its ancient history and meaning.

elfin alchemy flower earrings in purple

You can read my unique story of how I created this elfin alchemy wirework flower design in my last jewellery artist blog post

Now, come with me whilst I share with you how the flower design links to witchcraft in medieval times.

The 6-petal flower symbol used in medieval times was believed to have magical powers of protection, and when it was carved onto buildings it would help protect the dwelling and their inhabitants from witchcraft and evil. The 6-petal flower was usually drawn inside a circle and was known as a ‘rosette’ or ‘daisy wheel’, other names for it are:  a witch mark, ritual protection mark or apotropaic mark.

The use of this symbol mostly dates to a time in our past – medieval times, from after the reformation in 1517 - when there was widespread belief in witchcraft, superstition and the supernatural. The 6-petal flower rosette, a magical symbol of protection was commonly used across Britain and Europe until the end of the 19th Century. 

I was really interested to find out why they chose to use this symbol?

But all I could discover was that supposedly the witch or evil spirit would get lost following the lines of the pattern and it would stop them from entering. I think there must be more to it...
That doesn’t really answer for me why they used this particular 6-petal flower symbol and not a 4-petal flower or other pattern?
Also, why then? Why did they suddenly begin using this symbol after the reformation in the early 16th century?
I wish I could go back in time and ask them, as It’s a mystery that remains unsolved…


Don't you agree it's pretty magical and special?

Further breadcrumbs of knowledge are gradually given to me and over time I learn more about its magical significance. I've found that similar designs were used further back in time by the Romans, Greeks, and Sumerians, which I'll share more about in a later blog post. 

You can have your own piece of magic too, a pair of bewitching beautiful elfin alchemy 6-petal flower earrings. Take a look at my current collection of flower earrings

I make the six-petal flowers in healing copper wire enamelled in a range of enchanting colours, from golden yellow to pretty pink and purple shades, combined with sterling silver ear hooks. The flowers are partly made with my homemade jig - I’ve shared a photo of it in my jewellery artist blog post - and then hand sculpted.

In my next elfin alchemy blog post, I’ll be sharing with you more about our famous Lancashire witches and the display about them at the Pendle Heritage centre. 

Thank you, my lovelies, for joining me on my creative journey, wishing you many sparkles, Sam Rowena x

I kind of feel I was meant to create this 6-petal flower design and learn more about its symbolism and history... for a longer read, head over to my jewellery artist blog where I've written a bit more on this subject.