Beginner Witch Tips
One of the most popular questions I see asked often about witchcraft is what are the different types of witchcraft? Or what type of witch am I? The answer to these questions can produce a plethora of answers. Some clear cut and easy. Others are more complicated leading to a rabbit hole of research.
Here we will sit and distill some of these types of witchcraft to explore your identity as a witch.
Identifying Yourself As a Witch
How you identify as a witch is wholly up to you. No one else can tell you how you identify as a witch. No quiz can truly show what your witchcraft path is.
It is also up to you whether or not you use the term witch to identify yourself on your path. Some don’t and that is totally acceptable. Others are trying to reclaim the term and that is totally valid.
You don’t need to identify as any particular type of witch either. If you do, that is great. It can help you focus your path. For some, though, it can cause them to get caught up in unnecessary delays of making sure they are the right type of witch and practicing the right type of witchcraft on that path.
Maybe you find that labeling what type of witch you are doesn’t make sense, but labeling the type of magic or witchcraft you practice is helpful. It can be entirely appropriate to give your witchcraft a label and avoid labeling the specific type of witch you are.
If you do find having a way of labeling yourself or craft helpful, then what follows will break down some of the common types of witches and paths of witchcraft.
Types of Witches and Witchcraft
This list is not exhaustive. There are as many types of witches as there are people who identify as witches.
Witches who practice ceremonial witchcraft follow very strict, step-by-step rituals to complete their magic. These are often practitioners of Thelemic, Hermetic, and Enochian magics. Ceremonial magic is considered “high” magic because of its intense rituals and need for specific tools.
For some, nature-based magic is not their forte. They may find city witchcraft to be more their speed. This sort of magic is geared toward working with the energy and magic of living in a city. This can relate to making commutes through town easier, or safety when walking around. City witches use their magic to enhance their life in the city.
Cosmic witches incorporate various astrological elements into their witchcraft. They often pay heavy attention to the phases of the moon and the placement of the planets, the sun and the stars. They work with astrological and cosmic energies in their practice.
Cottage or Hearth
Cottage witchcraft, or Hearth witchcraft, is focused on the home. There is often incorporation of green and kitchen witchcraft into this practice. Magic is focused on keeping the home safe and all those in it healthy. Often everyday household objects are the primary tools of these witches.
Eclectic witches often use this term to denote that they don’t necessarily fit into one mold of witchcraft. They incorporate aspects from various types of witchcraft practices as suits their interests and needs. This does tend to be an all-purpose catchall term.
Elemental witchcraft works with the five elements in their craft. While many practices do bring these in in various ways, elemental witches focus heavily on working with all or a specific element. Some might focus on one element at a time or only ever focused on one. Still others might work with all in balance.
There is a good deal of crossover into other types of witchcraft with Elemental witches as the elements are often a part of other practices.
Faerie witchcraft is a practice that focuses on working with the Otherworld crowd. Faerie witches will work with nature and nature spirits along with various fae entities. There can often be a good deal of crossover with other types of witchcraft here.
Green witches, or green witchcraft practices, are oriented around and focused on nature. This often includes working with plants and their spirits as well as general nature spirits. They often prefer being out in their garden and working with homegrown herbs. They incorporate these ingredients in their magic and often have magic focused on the growth and health of their gardens. Green witchcraft is often also about being out in nature in general, whether the garden out back or out in the forest. There is also sometimes a focus on protecting natural environments.
There is often some overlap with green witchcraft and faerie witchcraft and cottage witchcraft.
Hedge witchcraft often gets conflated with green witchcraft in some books and sources, but they are different. Hedge witchery is about walking or crossing the line between here and the Otherworlds (referred to as jumping the hedge with the hedge representing liminal spaces). They often incorporate trance work in their practice to facilitate their hedge jumping. They work heavily with spirits and Otherworld folks in their practices.
Hedge witchery commonly have crossover practices with faerie witchcraft and even elemental witchcraft.
Kitchen witches and witchcraft is highly focused on the home and in particular the kitchen. Their tools are often common household cooking utensils. Their magic and spellwork is centered on cooking and baking. They use common household ingredients for their spells and incorporate their magic into the foods they make.
There is often crossover between kitchen witchcraft and green and cottage witchcraft practices.
Hereditary witches practice magic that have been passed down family lines. These are often beliefs and practices that families teach and pass down from one generation to the next. Mother to daughter or father to son. Sometimes these are simple folk beliefs to more complex ways of getting rid of curses.
Witches who focus on sea witchcraft incorporate various aspects of water magic into their practice. They often, though not always, live in coastal regions near the sea or other large body of water. They will also often work with spirits tied to the water or ocean.
Secular witches do not incorporate any form of religion or deities into their magical practice. They may have personal spiritual or religious practices but they keep their magical practices separate.
Tech witches use technology in their magic in various ways. Tech witchcraft can apply to any form of magic or magical practice that uses technology in some way, shape or form. Tech witches often use their magic to enhance their technology usage.
Traditional or Folk
Traditional (Trad) and Folk witchcraft is a practice that focuses on historical and folkloric magics. There is heavy emphasis on working with spirits and energies of the local area where one lives as well as working with ancestors. There is a lot of blending between historic practices and modern ways of doing things with this form of witchcraft.
While witchcraft itself is not a religion, Wiccans and Neo-Wiccans often practice witchcraft in conjunction with their religious practices. There are various traditions of Wicca with their own ways of incorporating witchcraft into them. There is often an incorporation of other types of witchcraft into them as well.
The above list is not exhaustive. There are many more types of witches and witchcraft out there. You may find that adding a label to your practice helps you focus on your craft better or you may find that simply calling yourself a witch is enough. No one can define your path except for you.
Do you feel it necessary to define what type of witch you?