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Making Your Own Rune Set

You have decided to make your own rune set and now you need to know what you should use to make them. First off let me say that by making your own set of runes you will find that you will get more accurate readings. Why? Well because you are putting your own energy into the set and filling them with a personal power that will help you in your readings.

When making your runes the material that you use is up to you. You could use stones that you have gathered along a lake front, cut small wooden tiles from a fallen tree branch, or use clay and then bake them to harden them. The choice is up to you. I will first talk about the few methods that I have used and how I went about making them, then I will show you how to add more power to the runes before you cast them. Some call this consecrating the runes. It is not necessary, but will help your runes to become more personal to you.

Stones or Small Rocks

One of the easiest ways to make a set of runes is to gather small rocks or stones that are all nearly the same in size. Then get some of your favorite color paint and paint the runes on the face of the rock. If you can’t decide on which color to use for the paint, red is a great color. It seems to have been the color of choice for rune casters (and carvers) in the past. If you’d like to have the color associated with a reason for casting check out this color association chart. After you have painted the rune symbols on the rock you may want to coat or seal the rock. You’ll find out that if you don’t the paint may begin to chip off the rocks. You can get a coating glaze at any hardware store. If you are having trouble picking a coating glaze ask someone at the store for help. They’ll be able to tell you what will work best for the paint and material that you are using.

Wood Tiles

If you prefer to use a material other than stone, wood is probably your next best choice. It’s easy to work with so you can make the tiles into just about any shape that you’d like. Probably the easiest way to make runes from wood is to take a fallen tree branch and cut some circular disks. Then you have the choice to mark the runes anyway you’d like. You could use paint, ink, burn them in the wood, or even carve them out. Once you’re done putting the runes on the wood, you can stain the wood to decorate it more. I suggest that if you paint the rune symbols on the wood that you do it after you have stained the wood. If you carve, burn or use ink to make the rune symbols you should do that before you stain the wood. Of course there’s no rule that you have to stain the wood, you can leave it natural.

Clay Runes

This is one way that I have not yet tried. The reason is that I’m not too sure just how to “fire” the clay once I have made the runes. If you know someone that does ceramic work then you could ask them to “fire” your runes in a kiln. That or find out how to “fire” the runes on your own.

Clay will be very easy to work with. Buy some clay at a hobby shop and mold it into the shapes that you will be using for your runes. Then simply carve the rune symbols into the clay and then “fire” them in a kiln or over a fire. Like I said I have not tried this method, and I do not work with clay so I’m sure there are more ways to decorate the runes that you are making than I’ve listed here.


If you hunt, know someone who does, or can get your hands on some animal bone, this is another option for your runes. I know some people who would never use bone because of the way they feel about animals. The choice, however, is up to you.

Working with bone will be a hard thing to do. If you know someone with a bone-saw you can have them cut the tiles for you. Otherwise you may have to go to a hardware store and buy a hacksaw and blade that can cut bone. You may have to ask for help on this one, and you might get a few odd looks from people when you tell them you need a saw to cut bone. When you paint on the rune symbols you may want to coat/seal the bone so that the paint will not chip off, much like with the rock. Carving may difficult to do on bone, and to be honest I can’t even begin to tell you how to go about it.

Consecrating Your Runes

After you have made your runes, the next thing that you may want to do is to consecrate them. This is like a small dedication that will add your personal power to your runes. If you’re using these runes for religious purposes then design a small ritual and consecrate them the same way you have with other tools that you may have consecrated before. If you’re just using these runes for casting – non-religiously, then you may want to do something like the following.

Gather your runes, a small bowl of water and a candle. Light the candle and place all of your runes on the left side of the candle. Take each rune and dab a little water on it with your finger as you say the name of the rune. If you don’t have the names of the runes memorized have a sheet next to you with the names on it. Then pass the rune over the candle flame and say it’s name again. Then place the rune down on the table on the right side of the candle and say the rune name one last time. Repeat this with each rune until you have completed consecrating each rune. You are now ready to use your runes.



This article has 23 responses.

Matthew T

Matthew T - Sep 2, 2012

I’ll be firing my clay runes soon for an art project. Toying with ideas such as color of the glaze, etc. - Jan 19, 2013

So did the set you made turn out? I would love to hear more about them – and even see an image if you had one.


Ted - Jan 26, 2013

Curious what the easiest way to burn the symbol into wood would be. - Jan 27, 2013

Ted – when I’m making a quick set I usually use my wood burner. Plug it in, let it heat up and go to work.

If I’m crafting a set for sale (or as a gift) – okay anything I want to put more time into – I have a metal bar that’s just filed to a tip (looks like a poorly made screwdriver) that I’ll heat up in a fire and then press into the wood. Takes more time, but gives it a unique look.

kathy petrilli

kathy petrilli - Mar 11, 2013

I am making a rune set and I have decided to carve the rune symbols into each polished stone, any ideas on which type of paint I should use? I want something I can wipe off if I get out of the lines LOL - Mar 12, 2013

Kathy – You may want to check at a hardware store with the type of paint that might be best. I’d imagine as long as you cleaned up anything outside of the lines fast enough you’ll be OK.

But it would still be good to check at the store for which paint would hold up best when painted on a carved rock. I say that because one of the first sets I did, I painted on a polished river rock… the paint didn’t stay on very well. You may have better luck because you’re carving into the rock, but never hurts to ask. (Sorry I’m not a paint expert so I couldn’t even begin to tell what would work best)

Link Zelda 32

Link Zelda 32 - Apr 10, 2013

I think I might do the wood ones and burn it on with the suns light and a magnifine glass

And try the clay ones
We have a kiln at school so I can use that

Thanks again lots of info also I’ve never heard of consicrating before cool

Link Zelda 32

Link Zelda 32 - Apr 10, 2013

What wood do you sagest - Apr 10, 2013

Link Zelda 32 – Please let me know how that goes with the magnifying glass. I’d be curious to see how it turns out!

And for what type of wood… I’m not a purest when it comes to making your own set of runes. Some may start naming woods that were common to Viking areas (for example). For me it’s more about what makes you the most comfortable – or what you may be most connected to. For example: if you had a lot of Oak trees around where you live and you see a fallen branch, work with that.


pariah - Apr 16, 2013

I make headstones and we use krylon spraypaint.


CrystalB - Jul 16, 2013

Hi there I work with wood runes and burn them on and sand it down.. recently i just made a clay set of runes and came out awesome.. its air dy method ones and i painted them up and shelacked them.. to bad i cant show you a picture of them.. i got the clay at the dollar store. you can either air dry them and or oven bake them.

bright blessings to you..


CrystalB - Jul 16, 2013

Ps thank you for making this site very refreshing and knowledgeable. I am re learning the runes again so thank you very much :) From Canada


CrystalB - Jul 16, 2013

oh yeah one more quick note.. when using clay runes the air dry method ones.. do not submerge in to water all your hard work will be dissolved in half hour lol. i did a tester rune just too see if it would and yep .. so sage would work best or place out on full moon in day time sun..


“How-To” #4 Making your own set of Runes | The Asatru Community - Aug 2, 2013

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Becca - Aug 6, 2013

I’m wanting to make my first rune set out of rocks. Can I paint different symbols in different colors or should all the runes in the set be the same color? Thanks so much for your help! :) - Aug 7, 2013

Becca – Personally, I think that you should do whatever you want. There may be purests out there that will tell you that you should paint them all one color. For me… I think whatever you feel comfortable doing and whatever you think looks the nicest is the way to go.

You’re making your own set. You’re already putting “your power” into them. If you’re more likely to use them because you’re happy with the way they look then you’ll start to find yourself connecting with your set and getting better readings from them.

So long story short – paint them anyway you see fit.


Kroraven - Aug 13, 2013

Just a note, if you want to make clay runes be sure to get the clay from the person who will fire the runes for you and ask them about glazes too :) another option is using air dry clay or polymer clay that is oven baked.
Good luck & BB


Freedom - Sep 3, 2013

I have made many sets of runes. I use river rock. I have made a set out of antler too. I’d have to say those were my favorite. Currently I am in the process of making many more for our yearly Pagan Pride Day. I use a clear enamel spray paint. I buy the cheap stuff at the closest Wally World. for the first two coats. Then I paint..after I’m done painting the symbols I use a little better brand to finish/seal them. I like to use the high gloss. The cheaper brand of sealer doesn’t have quite the shine that the other stuff does. If you coat them good before you paint, then while painting, if you mess up or change your mind about something you simply wipe it off and start again. Which is great for me! I have made sets in every color of the rainbow. With sparkles, without sparkles, some sprayed with chrome colored paint…super fancy and some very basic. Everyone seems to like them all. It’s just personal preference. Have fun with them guys. They are awesome. - Sep 3, 2013

Kroraven – That’s a good point about getting the clay from the person who will be firing it for you. hadn’t thought about that! - Sep 3, 2013

Freedom – I’ve never used clear enamel spray paint before I put the symbols on my stones. I’ll have to give that a try for the next set I make. Thanks for the tip!


Freedom - Sep 4, 2013

You are very welcome. Before I started doing that I could never get the ‘mistakes’ off the stones…and if anyone where to walk around in the fields near the places I have lived in the past 10 years or so you will find lots of half painted rocks LOL!! - Sep 4, 2013

But those ‘mistakes’ are what make the set unique. :)

Seriously though, I would love to be out walking and find half painted rune rocks!



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