Magick, eggs and Ostara

Crescent Moon Gifts is your one-stop shop for fantasy wares

By Jessica Corey-Butler on April 5, 2007

Crescent Moon Gifts thrums with the energy of shoppers milling about, asking questions of “Shoppe Keeper” Angela Wehnert during a time that’s traditionally not busy.  Later, Wehnert explains that the energy in the space had been oppressive to her that morning, “heavy.” So she smudged the store to clear the air.

Then, poof! Shoppers descended.

Coincidence? Or Magick?

The legions of magical creatures — dragons, fairies, mermaids, and deific entities from a multitude of cultures — vote the latter; Wehnert keeps an open mind to all potentialities.

While Crescent Moon Gifts predominantly carries fantasy wares, a growing collection of Pagan and Wiccan items has started to garner its own fan base in the less than three years that Wehnert has had the shop.

Initially apprehensive about carrying items that might invite the kinds of vandalism seen by her neighbors up the street at the New Age shop, The Crystal Voyage, Wehnert succumbed to customer demand, and her collection grew.

Wehnert started out her business in her time “off” from her day job, a 60 hour-a-week corporate position.  She sold fantasy items at flea markets on the weekends.

Along came cooler weather, and she decided to quit her day job and move her enterprise indoors, in a space smaller than 400 square feet.  Two moves later, she’s comfortably situated in a sunny spot in Freighthouse Square overlooking the grit and beauty of Tacoma, with daffodils blooming in front of her windows; beyond them lie train tracks, a dilapidated building, and road construction.

When she moved into the space, she explains, it was a smelly mess; the prior restaurant tenants had left a nasty mark.  But now, the carpet, tile-look floors, and incense feel like home, with a special space for kids to be inspired by fantasy, and with items to inspire kids’ parents.

When asked about “Ostara,” the Pagan alternative to Easter, Wehnert explains that it’s over; that holiday occurs on the vernal equinox and marks the seasonal shift toward fertility that culminates on Beltane, “May Day.”

“The mating season happens between now and Beltane,” explains Wehnert. “It’s the earth that’s fertile and blooming again.”

You might be familiar with some of the Pagan symbols of the season: eggs and bunnies.

Like the tree we look at during the shortest day of the year, the symbols were borrowed by dominant cultures as they incorporated existing religions and created new meaning.

But in Wehnert’s world, as in her shoppe, beliefs coexist with magick.  And it’s a cool thing.

[Crescent Moon Gifts, 440 E. 25th St. # 46, Tacoma, 253.572.8339]