I’ve been having a few nightmares lately so I thought I’d make myself a dreamcatcher to filter out the bad dreams – plus it’s a pretty decoration to brighten up any room.
Originating in Native America, dreamcatchers are traditionally made from a willow hoop with a web woven into the centre and decorated with beads and feathers. However, I wanted to make one with a contemporary twist and I came across this tutorial, which shows you how to make a modern dreamcatcher. It’s a mix between a dreamcatcher and a wall-hanging, making it more of a geometric feature decoration and here’s my take on it.
To make a dreamcatcher you will need:
2x embroidery hoops (one big, one small)
6x colours of embroidery silks
To start, wrap the embroidery silk around the larger hoop by holding the end of the thread against the hoop and wrapping over it. Keep going until you want to change the colour. To change colours, hold the end of the new colour against the hoop and wrap around it until it is secure. Then, cut the old colour short and wrap the end underneath the new colour. Keep changing colours to make an interesting pattern but keep it simple and clean-looking by using no more than 3 colours. When you’ve covered the hoop, don’t cut the thread, just leave it for now. Cover the small hoop using the same method.
To suspend the small hoop inside the big hoop, take the thread attached to the small hoop and weave around the two hoops in a figure of eight movement. Go around the whole circle, cut the end off and tie using a double knot. Do the same with the thread still attached to the big hoop until you’re happy with your woven web.
Next, cut 8 lengths of thread to 80 cm in 6 different colours or however many you like, I used white twice and 4 other colours. Tie one thread at a time to the hoop, starting with the central section. Tie the thread by folding it in half, placing the loop up over the hoop and pull the other end through. Pull the knot tight and let the thread hang down. Repeat using the remaining threads in the different colour sections from left to right to keep them central.
Once you’ve finished tying on all the threads, clean up the untidy ends by cutting them into a v-shape pointing downwards. To do this neatly and symmetrically, fold the corner of an A4 piece of paper, lining it up with the opposite edge to create a triangle and cut it out. Place the paper triangle over the threads, sellotape it down to secure it and carefully cut around it.
Now for the fun bit, add the beads at different heights by threading them on, tying a knot below them and pulling them over the knot so they stay in place. I tied the feathers onto the ends but if you want a smoother finish, you can glue them on using PVA. I avoided glue like the plague as, knowing me, the combination of thread, feathers and glue would end very badly! Lastly, to finish the dreamcatcher, make a hoop using a 30 cm piece of thread, thread a large wooden bead onto it and tie to the hoop so that you can hang it up.
I hope my instructions are clear enough, if not, feel free to ask me anything about how I made mine in the comments below. Sweet dreams!