• Sarah McGill

What does Alder have to do with ancient Celtic mythology and Harry Potter?

Updated: Sep 14


I have been asked many times why I named my company Alder and, more specifically, what the Alder icon means.


In this blog I'll share the story behind the brand name, and why finding the name ended up being an interesting journey into ancient history.


Finding a company name was really tough and took several months of thought and research.


It was so important that the name would reflect the integrity of my British made products. It also would have to appeal to my customer and organically connect to me personally.


It was when I started to research my Celtic roots that I learned about a fascinating connection between the calendar, nature and astrology.


Ancient Celtic druids believed that trees were the ancestors of man. Many trees were sacred to them and the trees became known for their magical qualities.


The 'Celtic tree calendar' was created which are set of beliefs that have been around since our time on earth began.

Druids split the calendar year into thirteen periods and a magical tree was assigned to each period. Each of these periods and their corresponding tree also had a moon named after it.

Each tree was represented by a symbol from an early medieval alphabet called Ogham.


The Celts strongly believed that the personality and future of a person born in one of those periods was affected by the characteristics of their associated tree. Find your personality here.


Being born on 7th April means that my tree is the Alder tree in the Alder moon period.


The Alder tree was known as a pioneer species and the Alder moon a phase of ‘accelerated growth, ambition and a time to harness potential’ including the Spring equinox.


Alder people naturally want to carve their own path. They are motivated and driven with a desire for adventure and to experience new places. This describes me well.


The more I read about Alder, the more I connections I would find between myself, my products and my customer.


Alder products are made for women that commute and travel with a laptop. For women that, like the product, are adaptable and often trailblazing, qualities that the Alder was associated with.


Alder cones were believed to offer protection to those that carried them, which is in keeping with the protection offered by the Alder laptop bag.


The Spring equinox is seen as a time of balance when day and night are of equal length around the world. An Alder product is designed with the balance of style and substance at its core.


With its roots in the water and its branches in the air, the Alder was seen as the balance between male and female. All important, especially in the world of work.



Harry Potter


Interestingly, the wands in the Harry Potter stories are named after these sacred Celtic trees.


It stands for reason, therefore, that a wand made from the wood of your birth tree would usually be a good match for you.


As Mr Ollivander in his Diagon Alley shop says, "It's the wand that choses the Wizard."


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