WHERE TO SHOP
Haus Witch Home & Healing: If you can only go to one place in Salem, go here! Founded by Erica Feldmann, it features art and wares from local makers and everything you need to cleanse your home, both energetically and actually. (Haus Witch has just launched Lighthaus, a line of home cleaning products that are all-natural and infused with gem essences that connect to different chakras, and Hauscraft spell kits to get you started on your merry magick way.) Erica thinks of the store “very much as a living thing; you really have to be inside of it to feel and see how light and bright our witchcraft is.” It remains her goal to take the witch “out of the shadows.” Erica moved to Salem wanting to learn how to “leverage the archetype of the witch as a feminist hero, feminist icon and bring the divine feminine out into the world.” She notes that the two are overlapping more and more and believes it to be the “only chance this broken world really has,” because we’ve been “overrun by this toxic masculinity and yang energy for too long and we have to incorporate the yin and the feminine, and it’s happening. People get that.” It was clear that they do, just from the short time I spent in the store. Many customers came in for crystals, tarot readings, spell books, and candles. “We need a strong figure to lead us right now, and the witch is the one to do it.”
Harrison’s Comics & Pop Culture: Stepping into a comic shop feels a lot like coming home, and every trip I've ever taken into Harrison’s has been awesome. The walls are lined with a pretty balanced collection of indies and mainstream, with tons of back issues, graphic novels, and serials. There are many vinyls, plushies, and toys, and a solid selection of manga and posters. The store is two stories—the downstairs being a gaming floor (closed every day in October except Sundays for a Pokemon league)—and has a predominately female staff, who are all rad, know their stuff, and are always super-welcoming.
Artemisia Botanicals: Whether you are new to the craft or have been practicing a while, Artemisia is definitely an exciting place to visit. They have “over 400 herbs, 100 teas, spices, essential oils and salts,” in addition to “flower essences, tinctures, salves, soaps, and oils to keep the body healthy.” Founded in 1997, this shop has the feel of a place that really cares about what it’s doing. The women that work there are full of information and have a great sense of humor. It feels like family, and the energy encourages you to stay awhile. If you like, you can also visit a psychic or have your cards read here. Make sure to peruse their line of spell candles before you leave; adding one to your next moon ritual never hurts.
Witchy City Consignment: The only consignment store in the area, this shop has all the traditional findings of a thrift store, with an “only in Salem” twist. Here, you can find antique cloaks from classic North East manufacturers, old photographs through the centuries, and, if you need a costume in a hurry, racks curated for the October crowd. I find their VHS collection really fun to dig through, because there are some true gems, though maybe make sure to avoid their doll displays, as they are creepy AF.
Enchanted Salem: Located in the heart of "Witch City," Enchanted is a key place to get to for seasoned witches and the newly curious alike. Like many of the shops throughout Salem, they have many items you might need for magick: "herbs and oils, stones, crystals, peytons (altar tiles), candles and holders, athames, chalices, and offering bowls." This shop is the home of Laurie Cabot, "The Official Witch of Salem," and her daughter, Penny Cabot, and carries the largest selection of handcrafted magickal items in the city. Laurie personally offers classes, workshops, and readings, in addition to other classes, workshops, Reiki, and psychic/tarot readings offered at Enchanted. I personally keep going back for their ritual inventory; this trip alone, I found herbs I've wanted to try for some time, a mini cauldron for a price that I hadn't been able to find anywhere else, tools to make burning a bit safer, and a new ritual book. Also, there is something special about being able to chat with a fellow practitioner about the joys of lighting things on fire, which herbs are best for topical use over ingestion, and what resources they utilize to learn more—and each time I've visited Enchanted, I've only encountered people willing to do just that.
Wicked Good Books: Independent bookstores need us more than ever, so I make it a point to pop in and purchase from them whenever I travel. If you want to learn more about the region, this one has a whole section dedicated to literature about New England, and their new releases section is current and diverse. Wicked Good carries a great selection for YA and adults, with the perfect mix of historical, fictional, paranormal, and spiritual texts, really great accessories and toys, and offers a consignment program through which they support local authors.
Bewitched in Salem: This is by far the most eclectic shop I've visited in Salem. It has all the things you'd expect—crystals, oils, etc, psychic and tarot readings—but what sets this place apart is its collection of books (in addition to more occult texts than I'd ever seen in real life outside of a library; I think they may carry every piece of literature that Anne Rice, Stephen King, and Dean Koontz have ever written), Egyptian and foreign artifacts (authenticity unclear, but they sure are pretty), and rare collector oddities, like Miss Cleo Tarot decks. Apparently, the owner has been in the collecting game for ages and can get you "any coin you're looking for."