This pandemic has been a roller coaster ride. Be it our inner masterchefs taking charge or the emotional upheaval we face almost everyday or to all those times when we tried to learn a new skill and remained calm & composed during these circumstances.
More or less, this quarantine has become a learning curve for many, realizing the intricacies of things that were earlier overlooked. Along with these positives, there are times when anxiety hits you, and sharing things with your best friend is a long lost affair. You feel dejected & strange and one can experience a series of emotional outbursts. This might seem frustrating, but take a deep breath and trust me, all these feelings are absolutely normal and common, it happens! This could lead to having nightmares and sleepless nights, and hence to combat all this we need two things- A) A clear mind, and B) An ability to bid farewell to these anxieties by adorning some creative caps, perhaps let’s indulge in some mind blowing DIYs- how about a DIY dreamcatcher, with some tips & tricks from us, at ‘India Circus by Krsnaa Mehta’!
How to make a DIY Dreamcatcher:
Things you’ll need
- Metal or wooden hoop
- Suede lace (or ribbon)
- Artificial sinew (or silk thread, wax nylon string, hemp thread)
- Small binder clips (4)
- Liquid craft glue.
01. Select a wooden or metal hoop: The size of the hoop is really dependent on how big you want your dreamcatcher to be. However, if this is your first time making a dreamcatcher, try a 5 to 8 inch (13 to 20 cm) hoop; these hoops are neither too big nor too small for beginners.
02. Use Suede lace to wrap the hoop: If you are using a 5-inch (13 cm) hoop, then 2 yards (1.8 meters) of lace should be enough. If you do not want to use suede lace, then you can also use ribbon.
03. Choose strings for the web: Use a string that is strong, but flexible. The length of the string should be ten times the diameter of the hoop. Traditionally, natural-colored string is used, but you can use any color you want. For example, if you are using a 5-inch (13 cm) hoop, then you will need 50 inches or 2 yards (1.8 meters) of string.
04. Place a half-inch (1.3 cm) line of glue on the top of the hoop: Holding the end of the suede lace against the hoop, wrap it around the line of glue. When you are wrapping the suede lace, make sure there are no spaces between the pieces of lace. Once you have wrapped the glued section, use a small binder clip to hold the lace in place until the glue dries, about five minutes.You should not be able to see the frame of the hoop underneath the suede lace. If you are using regular ribbon, then tie a double or triple knot at the starting point instead of using glue to secure the ribbon.
05. Continue wrapping the hoop with suede lace:Continue wrapping the lace around the hoop. At strategic spots, place more glue on the hoop before you wrap the lace around it. This will ensure that the lace stays in place. You should place glue on at least four, evenly spaced spots on the hoop. Wrap the lace all the way around the hoop, i.e., back to the starting point. Before you get to the end, place a final line of glue on the hoop. Finish wrapping the lace and secure it with a small binder clip.
06. Let the glue finish drying. Place the hoop aside for 15 to 20 minutes to let the glue finish drying. After 15 minutes, take off the clips.Cut off any extra pieces of lace or ribbon.
07. Tie the string securely to the top of the circle (while weaving the web): Cut 2 yards (1.8 meters) of string. Start by tying a knot at the top of the hoop. Tie a double or triple knot to ensure that the string is secure.
08. Loop the string around the hoop: Working clockwise, stretch the string to a spot about 2 inches (5 cm) over on the hoop. Loop the string around the hoop and back over itself to create a hitch. Make sure to pull the string tight to secure it before moving on to the next loop.
09. Continue looping the string around the hoop: Loop the string around the entire frame until you reach the top of the hoop where you started. As you do this, go slowly to make sure the loops are evenly spaced. Once you reach the top, loop the string around the hoop next to the starting knot. Note that the number of hoops should be an odd number.
10. Create the second layer of web: Loop the string around the midpoint of the first line of thread. Using the same technique, loop it around the string and over itself to create a hitch. Continue weaving the thread this way until you reach the top of the hoop
11. Continue the weaving until a small circle forms in the middle: As you weave the web, the circle in the middle will get smaller and smaller. Weave the string until only a small circle is left in the middle of the dreamcatcher. Make sure to pull the string tight to secure the web
12. Secure the web with a knot :Once the circle is small, about the size of a penny, tie a knot around the next string instead of hitching it. Tie a double or triple knot to make sure the string is secure and will not come undone. Then trim off any extra string with scissors
13. Make a hanging loop : Cut a 5-inch (13 cm) piece of suede lace. Tie the loose ends into a knot to make a circle. Secure the lace around the top of the hoop by pushing the knot through the loop. Then pull tight to create the hanging loop
14. Decorate: Loop beads into the web. You will need to do this as you make the web. Place a bead on the string before you loop and hitch it to the next string. You can either space them out randomly, or create a pattern by placing a bead on every other string. Group four to five feathers together. Use a small binder clip to hold them together while you tie and knot a string around the tops of the feathers to secure them. Then tie and knot the string along the bottom of the dreamcatcher. You can use natural materials like hemp, seeds and wood to give your dream catcher a natural feel. You can also decorate with assorted colorful fabric and yarn hang from the bottom as well as white and ivory feathers.
Hang this beauty near the place where you sleep, on the wall, or perhaps from a lampshade or bedpost or simply lay it down on a flat surface to render it inactive until you are ready to hang it up again.
Now that you know the art of weaving and being Mr Creative, it’s story time-
Why and how dreamcatchers gained significance?
Long time ago, the native American culture believed that if you hang a dreamcatcher above a bed, it will catch the bad dreams on the web while letting the good dreams through the hole in the middle. As the sun’s rays hit the dreamcatcher in the morning, all of the bad dreams will evaporate. Traditionally, dream catchers were hung above the beds of sleeping children to protect them from bad dreams and evil spirits. Legends held that the spider web design of the dream catcher would allow good dreams to pass through and float down the hanging beads and feathers to sleeping children.
Most believe that the best color to choose for a dream catcher is white and blue symbolic of hope and pureness. The shape of the dreamcatcher is a circle because it represents the circle of life and how forces like the sun and moon travel each day and night across the sky. The dream catcher web catches the bad dreams during the night and disposes of them when the day comes.
And now that you know the solution to your nightmares lies in adorning your creative caps. Let no more nightmares disturb you and let some colourful dreamcatchers pave way for brighter dreams and a sound sleep making way for some sunshine and positive vibes, that you’ve been yearning for. Take a deep breath and start weaving as it ends your anxiety issues. Flow with your creative spirit and be brave to live creatively!