Tag Archives: string

Indigenous Crafts: Dream-catchers

Indigenous Crafts: Dream-catchers
Dream-catchers

Dream-catchers

The Lakota hang dream-catchers where they sleep or over the cradles of babies. Good dreams go through the hole in the center of the dream-catcher while bad dreams are caught in the webbing like flies in a spider web.

MATERIALS:

6 inch embroidery hoop or large metal ring

2 yards of string or yarn

Beads, wood, feathers

Scissors

Glue

PROJECT:

  1. With a pencil make 8 equidistant marks around the embroidery hoop. If using a metal ring, make the marks with the black marker.
  2. Knot one end of the string or yarn on one of the marks. Leave about 3 inches hanging.
  3. Tie the yarn to the next mark and so on until there is yarn looped to each mark.
  4. Tie and loop the string from the middle of one loop to the middle of the next. Do not pull the string or yarn tightly. Continue to loop in this way making three or four rows of loops while occasionally stringing a bead. This is optional.
  5. When only a small “hole” is left in the center, pull the string tightly and knot the end of the string to the previous row. Tie a second knot to prevent unraveling. Trim excess string. A bit of glue will reinforce the knot. This is optional.
  6. Take the original 3 inch piece of string and tie it to the inside of the web. Tie a second knot and trim any excess. A bit of glue will reinforce the second knot.
  7. Tie a piece of string about 5 inches or more to the bottom of the dream-catcher. Toward the bottom half of the string loop two or three (or more) beads and tie a knot. Leave enough string to tie around the tip of a feather. You can make as many as two or three of these but vary the lengths to make a more interesting design.
  8. Reinforce the knots if necessary with glue. Insert feathers into the web of the dream-catcher. This is optional.
  9. Tie a loop of the string or yarn at the top of the dream-catcher so you can hang it up.

NATIVE AMERICAN ART – A BRIEF INTRODUCTION

Native Americans imbued art into everyday objects: baskets, textiles/weaving and pottery. They placed all their hopes and fears into their art. Colors, patterns and symbols reflected their views of the creator and the inner spirit of people and animals.  These colors, shapes and symbols held different meanings for different tribes but some general meanings apply.

Colors:

Blue: female, moon, sky, water, thunder, sadness

Black: male, cold, night, disease, death, underworld

Green: earth, summer, rain, plants

Red: war, day, bold, wounds, sunset

White: winter, death, snow

Yellow: day, dawn, sunshine

Shapes:

Curves and spirals

Parallel lines

Flowing lines, i.e. plants and flowers

Birds, fish and human faces

Triangles, rectangles, squares and other geometric shapes

Bibliography

Haslam, Andrew. Make It Work! Native Americans. Minnetonka, MN: Two Can Publishing, 1995.

Gooch, Randall and Temko, Florence. Traditional Crafts from Native North America. Minneapolis, MN: Lerner Publications, 1996.

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Summer Camp: Drawing with Yarn and Starch (or Glue)

Summer Camp: Drawing with Yarn and Starch (or Glue)

 

Materials:

Three small bowls

Scissors

Liquid starch or glue

Yarn

String

Cardboard in any color of choice

Yarn in various colors and thickness

 

  1. Pour liquid starch into bowls.
  2. Cut some of the yarn into 12” lengths.
  3. Soak the yarn in the starch separating the white (if you are using white) from the colored yarn because some of the colors will run. Leave the yarn in the starch for a few minutes.
  4. Lift the yarn out one strand at a time and run your fingers down the length to remove the excess starch. Do this with the string if using it along with the yarn or instead of the yarn.
  5. “Draw” with the yarn by dropping it on the cardboard in a random pattern. Repeat this with the other strands of yarn combining the colors in a pleasing design. Alternate with string.
  6. Fill in some of the shapes that you “drew” with more yarn so that some of the shapes are more solid than others. Consider separating some of the yarn so that white or negative space shows throughout the design. (See the samples.)
  7. Finish the “drawing” and place the art on a flat surface until it dries. Weigh down the corners with heavy objects in the meantime.

ALTERNATIVE PROJECT:

Draw a design or object on the cardboard and follow the procedure above.

Inspired by: All-Around-the-House Art and Craft Book by Patricia Z. Wirtenberg

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Summer Camp: Paper Bag Animals/Paper Bag Pets

Summer Camp: Paper Bag Animals/Paper Bag Pets

 

Paper Bag People and Animals

Paper Bag People and Animals

Materials:

Lunch size paper bags, brown or white

Newspaper (or similar material)

String

Tape

Scraps of construction paper

Paste or glue

Ribbon and/or yarn

Sequins, buttons, seeds (for eyes, nose mouth)

Crayon and/or markers and/or colored pencils

Clip art

Scissors

Pipe cleaners (for whiskers)

Wiggle eyes

Rubber Band

Ruler

 

Project:

  1. Choose the pet or animal you will make.
  2. Stuff 1/3 of the bag tightly with crumbled or strips of newspaper (or similar material) to form the head (about two or three sheets).
  3. Gather the bag at the base of the head. Tie it securely with string or yarn.
  4. Stuff the rest of the bag with more newspaper and tape the bottom of the bag closed.
  5. Cut eyes, nose, mouth, and paws from construction paper or use sequins, buttons or seeds. Use pipe cleaners for the whiskers.
  6. Tie a ribbon or piece of yarn around the neck.
  7. Add buttons or other decorations to dress up you paper bag pet or person.

Alternative Projects:

  1. Make a paper bag person. Use yarn for hair and wiggle eyes. Follow the directions above.
  2. Stuff only the top 1/3 of the bag. Insert a long stick (like a ruler) into the head and secure with string, yarn or a rubber band. Use as a puppet and put on a play for your friends! Read the books below for more ideas:

Gauch, Patricia Lee. Poppy’s Puppet

Marsh, Valerie. Puppet Tales

 

 

 

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