There are lots of things to take into consideration when setting up your altar, and most of these things are all confusing and random at times. Over a period of time, whilst you study, all the things you learn from setting up altars and what they are etc will all fall into place easily. Setting up your altar coincides with lots of things, so get a pen and paper handy and start your own correspondence lists.
The Lord and Lady
The Lord and Lady are extremely important figures in the craft so represent them and thank them often. On your altar you should designate two areas for them. As the Lord and Lady are individuals, you should give them their own sides.
“Left for the Lady,
Right for the Lord.”
Leave the centre of the altar as a representation of their unity, the balance and you. Look at it like this, (the following diagram is from Scott Cunningham’s book Wicca: A Guide for the Solitary Practitioner)
That’s a start. For the Lady you should present items which are all representations of her, like 5 petal flowers, things to do with the sea and the element water and fire. Candles, Holy Water, bottles and light flowery scents.
For the Lord you should have things that represent the phallus, which was highly observed by people long before the Egyptians were created! Before the Christian god etc. So you would have pointy things like the Athame, Boline, staff and sword. Wooden items, horns and shields. Things to represent the elements Earth and Air, so candles, feathers and soil or salt in a pot etc.
Put that in your basic altar correspondence list. Set it out like this (to make it easy for yourself):
Fill it out as appropriate to you, leave enough space as over time you’ll flick back and add more! As time goes on, you’ll research pantheons, and I would recommend you look up loads of pantheons not just the one you’ll follow. Copy out a similar correspondence table but use deity names and add a few columns for colours, days and scents etc.
The elements are a big factor when practising the craft. Incorporating the elements into your spells etc is important. Another thing you should know if you don’t already (which I expect everyone does know…) is that elements are apart of your life and lifestyle! Hence why Wicca isn’t just a ‘religion’ in my eyes, it’s a lifestyle.
So, when putting the elements on your altar, section it off like this:
So when you look at how to set up your altar using the two factors of the Lord and Lady and the elements, your altar and personal space will be a lot more intoned with Spirit than you think. You’ll learn a whole lot so use this as a guide. Some people may not like or agree with what’s here and that’s fine, you’ll find your own personal way to honour the Gods.