When setting up an altar it is nice but not necessary to have a lot of magickal tools.
A basic altar can be set up using different colored tea lights or candles to represent the five elements, Spirit, Air, Fire, Water, and Earth. To make the candle burn a little longer and drip less keep them in your freezer until you are ready to use them. You can put your personal candle back into your freezer after it has cooled down for at one hour after use. Place your elemental candle in the shape of a pentagram. You can use a piece of chalk to draw the outline of a pentagram wherever you are setting up your altar. When you are done with the circle and have removed all things off wherever your atar was set up just use a wet paper towel to wipe off the chalk. It may take more than one depending on how hard use pressed with the chalk when drawing the pentagram. When I to this I either bury the paper towel in one of my gardens or burn it in my outdoor fireplace as a sign of respect for the remains of the pentagram it holds.
A few other ideas to use for the elements are:
SPIRIT: A statue or picture of an angel or a picture of ancestor
AIR: A feather or incense stick or cone or windchimes
FIRE: A book of matches or lighter or wooden matches
WATER: A seashell or any type of aquatic wildlife statue or picture or a small container of water
EARTH: A stick or some rocks or a small container of dirt or salt (not sea salt but regular table salt)
The Goddess and God you wish to have present can also be done by using a candle or tea light. Some other objects you could use are:
GODDESS: Eggshell or birds nest or a statute of a woman of any size or a picture of a Goddess
GODS: A pine cone or small tree branch with leaves or a statute of a man any size or a picture of a God
You can take a glass r cup and a small plate of some kind from your kitchen that you rarely use to consecrate for use as your chalice and offering dish.
Your personal candle you will want to use a bigger candle so you do not have to dedicate and personalize one every time you use it in a circle. I have a 12-inch (30.48 cm) taper candle works very well for my personal candle and lasts about 2 to 4 months depending on how often I make a circle.
As for your Book of Shadows being on your altar or not is up to you. I keep a couple of pieces of paper and a pen on my altar when doing a circle, especially if it is a circle meditation, just in case something happens during the circle I want to remember. My BOS is a three-ring binder with lots of empty pages in it so I do not have to cleanse them before using them on my altar or placing them back into my BOS.
WAND: Your do not absolutely have to have a wand to do a basic altar. But if you live near a park, forest or have trees in your yard look on the ground for a fallen branch. Ask the tree if you can have it for your personal use as a wand and leave a small token of appreciation such as a little water, a small stone or whatever else you feel might be appropriate.
SIDE NOTE: Left handed people sometimes put their Personal Candle on the left and BOS on the right.
Copyright 2017 Lady Beltane.