Clove-quartz rattles

It ain’t spring until music starts playing in your head as soon as you wake up. To go with the flow and to entertain your urge to move following the sacred rhythm of your inner being, having a pair of rattles can be quite useful. Rattling and drumming are the first prehistoric forms of music humans have developed, and it is no surprise those sounds have followed us since the caves we walked out of. Their vibration is rooted deep into the core of our being, and they are often found as key instruments in many different pagan practices. Sure, you can buy a drum or a pair of rattles, but there is something special in creating your own because we always project a piece of our energy into material objects we are creating. Ever since Ostara and the beginning of spring, there is movement inside me that wants to be expressed. Since I couldn’t find my old rattle (there are no coincidences in this Universe), I had to make a new one, hence a short DIY tutorial on how you can make your own pair of rattles.

Materials needed

When creating a rattle, follow your own instinct and play with different fillings until you get the sound that you want. You can make rattles on wooden sticks like I prefer to do, or you can hold them directly in your hands. I found that having them on sticks gives me more range in sounds, and even a gentle shake can be heard as opposed to having them in my fists.

Materials needed for a pair of rattles,
materials needed for a rattle
Materials needed for a pair of rattles

When choosing the casing for a rattle, wooden containers would be ideal. If you are in no such luck to acquire wooden ones, plastic ones will do just fine. I often repurpose plastic objects as much as I can and give them new meaning instead of just throwing them out. Those three Rs (reuse, recycle, repurpose) are important to keep in mind. Don’t worry, the sound is lovely, and you can decorate your rattles in any way you wish, so you won’t see those plastic containers anyway.


  • 2 wooden sticks 20-30 cm long depending on your preferences
  • 2 small plastic containers (I used those from nail polish remover)
  • fabric of your own choosing to cover the containers
  • glue
  • wool, thread, or rope
  • decoration such as a different kind of fabric, beads, paint to color the rattles, feathers, etc. (I used another fabric and two wooden beads)
  • scissors
  • filling

You can decorate your rattles with different materials, sew beads on them, glue and/or tie feathers around them, but you can also choose to paint your rattles and draw symbols on them. My previous rattle, the one I, unfortunately, cannot find at the moment, has feathers and a symbol of Earth element on it.

What should I fill my rattle with?

Whatever you like. Keep in mind, though, that lighter materials produce quieter sounds. You can fill your rattle with dry plants only, but it will be almost silent. That doesn’t mean that its vibration won’t be lovely, of course. It all depends on how loud you want your rattles to be and with what kind of frequency. The smaller the material is, the more shushy it is, and it will resemble the low frequency that the sound of leaves has. Bigger materials will have more of a bang when they hit the walls of your container.

Another factor that you have to consider is the amount of filling you use or the amount of your container that you will fill. The more you fill the container, the more shushy it will be because the material won’t be free to move and hit the walls of the container. Let’s take, for example, that you use rice. If you fill the entire container with it, pieces of rice will gently rub against each other, but they won’t have enough room to move, hit the walls of the container, and make a loud sound. On the other hand, if you put two marbles in your container, you will hear loud banging each time you move your rattle.

Filling of the rattle

I used four different materials for filling each rattle: 3 grams of salt, 7.5 grams of cloves, 25 grams of quartz crystal, and 25 grams of black sand. Tiny black sand is really shushy and allows the rattle to have a low-frequency sound when moved gently, while quartz crystals are a bit larger and heavier, and the rattles can be loud if I want them to. As for the cloves and salt… Well… Let’s just say that I put salt in everything, and cloves are magical and go with salt fantastically. As for the amount of filling, I filled one-third of the containers. Some people prefer to use more filling, and some prefer less. As I said earlier, you need to play a little and see what sounds work best for you. Don’t tie and/or glue your rattles and finish them until you’ve tried them in your hands and felt what kind of movements are required for what kind of sound intensity or frequency.

When you fill your containers with filling, close the hole either by glue, your wooden stick, or both and be careful that it really is sealed and nothing can come out. The hole was just a bit bigger than my stick, so I glued some wool around the stick and then glued it to fit tightly in the hole. Now the decorating part comes in. There are no limits when it comes to your creativity. You can decorate your rattles in any way you wish. They can be simple, or they can be shiny and colorful. As usual, I went with green colors and decorated my dark green rattles with light green wooden beads and another light green fabric. Oh, and did I mention that the wooden sticks were painted green too?

Move to your inner rhythm

I never liked that saying, “Dance like nobody is watching.” It presumes that I should dance differently if there are or aren’t people looking at me. We should strive to be free in our expression in front of people we are around. If you can’t be comfortable with your people, maybe they aren’t your people. Consider finding yourself another group of humans if current ones are holding your spirit down. You can move, you know? You are not a tree.

While we are on the “you can move”, try it. Rattle away and let your body follow. Relax and let go of the social construct that it has to look good. It really doesn’t. Move your arms, legs, hips, and every part of your body that you can. Listen to it and perform movements that are easy, natural, and do not hurt or feel uncomfortable in any way. Feel the rhythm moving you, and feel how you yourself are moving the rhythm.

Interested in more crafts and projects?


When a pagan utters the word Craft, they usually mean the conscious governing of their life and influencing the world around them, controlling it in a way, and co-creating it. It really is a special skill and a craft to be able to control yourself and then in extension, your influence and coexistence with other creatures of the Universe, humans, plants, and animals. Craft includes…

All photos are taken by me. You have my permission to use them with the proper credit and the link back to this site.

Merry meet, and merry part, and merry meet again my dear pagan soul. Rejoice in life, and life will rejoice in you. May God and Goddess bless you in everything you do and spirit guides follow you wherever you go.

Pagan life, pagan blog, blog o paganizmu

In love and light,


19 thoughts on “Clove-quartz rattles

  1. Another quality post! I am a terrible dancer, lol, but music is a passion of mine and my tastes are varied. I believe my pantheon likes the heavier side of my tastes, which I used to cover professionally, to the lighter, eloquent, symphonic side to the hard dance side. I would say Mother Isis and Lady Sekhmet are keen on the sistrum.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. There is no such thing as a terrible dancer, lol. If you can move, you can dance. People often think how they need to look a certain way when they dance, but they forget the core thing about dance. You are not dancing for or because of others, you are dancing for and because of yourself. 😉

      Have you ever listen to music in your car or while on the computer and noticed how you are swaying left and right gently or tapping your feet? That’s it. THAT is it. Your body is moving and being carried by the rhythm, and you are not thinking about it. You are just moving. I am sure you are not a terrible foot tapper when something you like comes on. The genre of the music is irrelevant. If you feel like jumping up and down and waiving your arms like a bird, GO FOR IT.

      Liked by 2 people

      1. I love your introspection and counterpoint since you come at it from an intelligent angle of reason. As a former music journalist and one-time wannabe drummer, I can tell you my feet are always in motion with music and certain moods call for certain music, unless the Goddess or God knock upon my head asking me to play something for them while driving. For instance, since my pantheon is primarily Egyptian, they often ask me to spin Jerry Goldsmith’s exquisite and often heady Mummy soundtrack. The Norse gods in my pantheon often want to hear fast-blazing metal like Amon Amarth. Sometimes the Egyptians want me to spin metal or classic alternative. The Goddess sometimes wants me to play soul, sometimes classical or jazz I oblige them when they ask.

        The rest of is for myself and since I no longer need to listen subjectively for work, I fit it all to my mood or if my kid and/or fiancee are with me. I would also say that film scores and soundtracks are a fundamental part of my fiction writing process. They open my imagination and get the rest of me moving fluidly in time. I seldom let myself go in public since my fiancee teases my lack of dancing aptitude, though I’m a lean and suave slow dancer. She was a professional dancer once and now a Wiccan high priestess, so I just do what feels good or what the Lord and Lady seek from me, usually in private.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. It is absolutely lovely that you can “feel at home” in different genres, feel them, and enjoy them.
        One-time wannabe? A drum set wannabe maybe? Try a drum, singular.

        Liked by 1 person

      3. I spent my teens as a headbanger and punk rock fan, but saw there was more to music than that, since I was raised on 50s rock and roll and 70s rock and pop. I explored more in college where I fell in love with alternative and industrial, then hip hop and old school rap. From there, I just branched out to all genres in search of something great to hear, regardless of genre. I never thought I would like country, but I do the old school stuff and more so the offshoot alt-country experiments in today’s underground, psychobilly, you name it. I love world music and float from Japanese to Celtic to African effortlessly. If the music has integrity, I’m into it.

        I started in music journalism covering electronic/techno, early years of what’s now EDM. That included Goth and alternative, which I was already well-versed in. I played drums for a short spell in a punk band with my friends that never took off. Later, my ex-wife got me a new drum kit, congas, bongos, other percussion,. Hard times forced me to sell it all, but the beat flows through me and I’m always attuned to a sharp rhythm and artists who dabble and blend genres with intelligence instead of slapdash tomfoolery.

        I always tell people, aspiring music writers especially, to get your head around as much different music as possible outside the genre you’re covering. It makes you smarter, richer and more relatable, especially when you can hear an outside influence that gives your opinion cred. I’ll never forget being contacted by this black metal band who excitedly thanked me for flagging The Cure in their music, since that was the vibe they were using and nobody had yet detected it. I hear a lot of Cure in black metal, particularly the dark, somber roots of the Pornography album.

        One of the biggest joys of my music life as translated to the witchy path is the parallel to Siouxsie and the Banshees. I’ve always loved them (talk about percussion brilliance), but it went the extra mile once I connected the two.

        But I digress…. 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

      4. Now, that is what I call a comment! 🙂
        Thank you for being willing to share so much and provide background. For the sake of the beat flowing through you, I hope a bongo or something finds its way to you sooner or later, maybe when you least expect it. 💚

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Those look fantastic and I’m impressed with the recycling idea. I don’t personally use many tools in my own practices, but I find myself always going for the easy commercial solution in the past. Having made my own runes recently, I’m more inclined than ever to forgo purchased tools and this gives me some great ideas.


    Liked by 2 people

    1. I was always a big advocate for “make your own stuff” and made two Rune sets….
      Then I saw crystal ones, green aventurine crystal ones, my favorite crystal. Yeah… I bought them without questioning. 😀

      Liked by 2 people

    1. Oh, please do share what your mother and you made. I am sure it will be gorgeous! You can use whatever you want as the filling. Rice works good. My previous rattle had rice inside.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Cute! I’d love to try making my own rattles. I’ve never owned one as an adult. Rattles and drums remind me of this shamanic retreat I did in Peru. I haven’t thought much of either since, but recently I’ve been on the lookout for my drum. Making a set of rattles sounds nice in the meantime 😊 I also love your comments about dancing how you feel loved to whether people are watching or not 👏

    Liked by 1 person

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