People have used bells since time immemorial to sound the alarm to let villagers or soldiers know when harm is on the horizon, to call family or workers to meal time from far across fields, to worship in their rituals, be they in churches, temples, or in the middle of a forest, to send off newlyweds, to alert business owners of customers entering, for livestock or pets, to make music, to mark the passage of time, and so much more.
Early bells were made from iron, and it was believed that iron could protect one from evil spirits. Many witches still believe this today.
They also believed that the clear ringing sound cleansed the space of any unwanted entities and warded their homes from ill intent.
The most commonly known place where witches hung their bells was on their doorknobs to prevent those who meant harm from entering, but you could also hang them on your altar, in your window, or just about anywhere you want to add extra protection.
From the Encyclopedia of Witchcraft by Judika Illes:
Bells are used for summoning and banishing spirits
Bells are used to vanquish and remove the Evil Eye
The sound of a bell ringing, especially a metal bell, is believed to exert a purifying influence and so bells are used for cleansing spells
Bells are protective devices: malicious spirits allegedly flee from their sound
Bells are used in fertility spells
Bells are a tool for magical healing: ringing bells facilitates healing, and sometimes healing potions are drunk from magical bells
Illes writes, "Bells are also hung from chains or incorporated into mobiles to serve as amulets or the equivalent of a magical guard dog. If strategically hung, allegedly the bells will spontaneously ring as needed."
Thus, I'll show you how to create your own magical bells to ward your space.
Because I received a couple of Amazon gift cards, I decided to buy a DIY kit, but you don't need to purchase a kit to create your own bell mobile. (DIY kit)
If you hang it on a door knob, the kit has small grapevine wreaths you can adorn with bells and other talismans. The wreath slips easily over a door handle. You can buy those separately at nearly any crafts store. The Dollar Tree even carries heart-shaped versions for only a little more than a dollar a piece! (Dollar Tree heart-shaped grapevine wreaths and Michaels 3" grapevine wreaths - Save 20% with code 22MADEBYYOU) If you're good at weaving and have access to vines, you could even create your own wreaths.
If you don't have access to grapevine wreaths or don't want to buy any, you can use twine to wrap around the door handle with bells tied to the ends.
I'll show you how to make them based on the kit I purchased, but you can tweak these in any way you like.
Also, if you can't hang them from a door knob, you can hang them anywhere convenient in the space you want to protect.
What you'll need:
1 grapevine wreath (approx. 3 inches)
3 small bells (with loops to attach them)
Miscellaneous talismans for extra protection*
*The kit came with the following:
Small empty bottle with cork
**Note: I added a seashell to one I made instead of the crystal.
In the bottle, you can add anything you want to create a mini spell jar for extra oomph.
My witch bottle ingredients:
Broom straw (to send away any negativity)
Graveyard dirt*** (for protection)
Nettle (to repel ill intent and negative entities)
Red jasper chips (to reverse hexes)
Clear quartz chips (to amplify and purify)
Black tourmaline chips (to transmute negative energy into positive)
Gold flakes (to distract evil energy)
Gardenia oil (to attract positive energy)
***Note on graveyard dirt: I purchased mine from Laurie Cabot's store in Salem, MA, but if you collect your own, please do so respectfully and be sure to leave an offering!
1. (Optional) You can wrap your twine around the grapevine wreath to create a pentagram.
2. Otherwise, cut three lengths of twine about 2 feet each (to have plenty to work with)
3. Tie one length to the middle of the bottom of the wreath and one on either side about an inch apart.
4. Add whatever talismans, charms, or trinkets you want to each of the three lengths of twine.
5. At the end of each length, tie your bell and trim any extra twine.
6. Hang your witch bells and chant the following (or create your own):
Hanging bells ward this place
Let no evil enter this space
Guide, guard, and protect me
Thank you, spirits. So mote it be!
(Additional sources: https://otherworldlyoracle.com/witches-bells/)