This beautiful set consists of 33 flat, oval porcelain stones, a velveteen drawstring pouch and an 88-page book. The stones measure approximately 1 1/8" x 1 5/8". As they are handcrafted, they aren't 100% uniform in shape, which completely adds to their charm. The backs of the stones are blank (white). They are unglazed, and become more smooth with time as the natural oils in your fingers soften the finish.
The Crone Stones system consists of three suits, representing the different stages of life: Maiden, Mother and Crone. There are eleven categories of stones, with one stone of each suit within each category.
- Natural Cycles
- She Who...
- The Activist
- Universal Energy
I was curious how the images were printed onto the stones, so I asked Carol to explain the process:
"The stones are "stamped" with a color that is supposed to represent red ochre - a tint that the ancients used as a symbol of the life force. Once the ink is set on the stone, the stone is fired a low fire "biscuit" and then finished with a high fire for porcelain (about 2100 degrees)."
How They Read
I have found the Crone Stones to inspire very deep and thoughtful readings. They ask questions of you in such a way that you can't help but be honest with yourself, whether that is comfortable or not. The week that I worked with the stones daily, the majority of the stones I pulled were from the Crone suit. This indicated that I was going through a period of transition, and it wasn't necessarily all sunshine and roses. The stones accurately picked up on my vibe throughout the week, and helped me work through it.
I love the feeling of digging my hand into the soft bag and feeling around until I get a stone that feels like the "right" one. I'm used to working primarily with cards, but I have always loved the feel of stones in my hands, and these feel very luxurious. So the aesthetic aspect of it definitely adds another meaningful layer to the experience.
The book which accompanies the stones is an excellent resource. The book begins with a handy table of each of the stones, divided into their sets. Then there is an introduction explaining the background of the triple woman, the suits, the purpose of the stones, and how to use them.
Next comes the bulk of the book, featuring the meaning of each stone, complete with photos of the stones. Each stone comes with a fascinating cultural tale which illustrates its meaning. Then the author suggests more tangibly what the stone might mean for you when it appears. And at the end of each passage, there is a discussion question, designed to get you to think more deeply about the meaning the stone has for you (which I love).
The book also features several spreads. The 3-stone Crone Throw, the 5-stone Starburst, the 7-stone Almond Spread, and the 7-stone Jessica Crescent.
Another neat aspect of the book is the inclusion, "Host a Crone Stone Evening" with 4 pages of ideas for having a group gathering using the Crone Stones as the center focus. There's also a lovely section on "Solo Charm Work and Caring for your Stones" which includes info on cleansing and charging the stones, and using them with herbs for magical work. The book ends with some additional tips on reading with the stones, a bibliography and three blank pages for notes.
The Crone Stones is a gorgeous oracle set, and the book is very comprehensive and well thought out. I would highly recommend bringing this set into your home, especially if you are interested in honest self-reflection. These stones, along with the accompanying book, will serve as a spectacular catalyst for getting to know yourself better.
I'd also like to emphasize that while the stones' suits are female in nature, the stones need not be used exclusively for women. They provide ideas for reflection and inspiration for the human journey, emotions and life transformation we all go through, regardless of gender.
The Crone Stones are available directly from the artist (Carol Lee Campbell) at CroneStones.com.
See below for more images of the Crone Stones.
Crone Stones (by Carol Lee Campbell, CroneStones.com)
This oracle review was originally published on my previous blog (Tarot Dame) on 2/22/10.