Make new friends but keep the old. One is silver, the other gold…..and copper!
Happy New Year everyone!
Sammisupplies is ready to jump into the New Year with new classes, kits and products.
While we feature our classic tin thread and gold colored thread, we are excited to offer copper spun thread to enhance your braiding color combinations. I couldn’t help but attempt to combine all three colors into a single bracelet project which I have dubbed the “Candy Corn” design.
While this was easy on my sweet tooth (!) it was a little challenging to keep the braiding even. The copper and gold colored thread is a bit springy so combining it with the silver colored thread required firmly braiding the threads so everything remained uniform.
Try your hand at mixing and matching your tin and or gold colored thread with our new copper thread for a fresh look. These bracelet styles are like potato chips. You can’t stop at wearing just one!
Our current classes are filling quickly! Check out our upcoming class calendar here. We are busy making the next round of instructional videos in conjunction with our new kit offerings so look for some great new designs in February to get you ready for spring. Happy crafting and please let me know if you have questions or need help ordering materials!
As I sit down to write this blog I realize I haven’t written anything since the summer. Between moving our classes to Zoom formats and looking ahead to what classes will look like in 2021 the year is ending with a bit of a sigh. I have missed being in a physical classroom amidst the hustle and bustle and laughter of students working on their projects. My jewelry studio is now a sound stage instead of a showroom and I spend a lot more time on my computer than at the bench.
However, over the past six months I’ve met students from all over the United States and Canada I might never have gotten to know! We’ve doubled our student enrollment and class offerings and it makes me happy and hopeful that folks are busily keeping the creative fires burning. We are happy to announce our new class calendar for 2021! This is only a partial listing so stay tuned for more class dates to be added. Still need a present for that hard to buy person? Give the gift of “a little class” with a gift certificate from any of the venues listed.
I’ve had great feedback from students about projects they’d like to explore in the future and even advice about providing some history and care instructions for people giving gifts this time of year. One of my students, Amy, gave me permission to share her idea of printing something she could enclose with the gifts she made for her family members.
Thanks for getting the bracelet kits to me so fast! And thanks as well for the excellent video instructions for the kits I just got. Between those and the YouTube video from a North House class I took from you, I was well prepared for my projects.
This little elf has tired fingers (with no punctures) and bracelets for the furthest away sisters-in-laws and my mother-in-law ready to go in the mail tomorrow! Santa should be able to deliver on time 🙂 One is getting a Viking Posament bracelet and another a different braid, both from supplies I got from you a couple of months ago. One question, I was looking on your website to see if you had any information on the care of bracelets (for folks like I’m sending them to who don’t have any idea what they are) and the history of Saami-inspired work like this. I found a bit of the latter in one of your blogs, but I wondered if you could point me in the right direction.
You’ll probably see another order from me relatively soon as I think I want my own four braid color band bracelet!
Thanks again and Merry Christmas!
What a great idea! Thanks so much Amy!
Because of Amy’s feedback you’ll find this description on printed cards included in future orders from saamisupplies.com and all kits for our 2021 class offerings.
A Bit of History about Your Sámi Inspired Bracelet
Coiled metal thread has been used by many cultures over the centuries for adorning clothing and textiles. Some of the most fascinating objects demonstrating medieval craftsmanship have come from Viking burials of the 9th and 10th centuries in Sweden. As a valued trade item “tin thread” reached the northern Scandinavian Sámi nomadic culture during the 1600’s and became an intrinsic element of their clothing and leather goods. Reindeer are an important staple to the Sámi and reindeer leather and antler are used in creating beautiful tin thread embroidery on traditional clothing. This craft has also evolved into the creation of a distinctive jewelry style. This jewelry is “Sámi Inspired” because of the unique combination of reindeer materials and tin thread. Avoid swimming or showering while wearing your bracelet and it will last for many years!
We are devoting the month of January to creating new kits and instructional videos to keep your fingers nimble until we are back in the classroom. Here are a few hints.
We want to thank all of our clients and students and everyone who has kept this beautiful tradition alive and for supporting us by courageously converting to the online class format. We appreciate you and wish you God Jul wherever you are! Don’t forget to check out our 2021 Class Calendar and we’ll see you next year!
New York Times Interviews Liz Bucheit about Sámi Culture
Happy Spring (almost)
This year started off with a bang for everyone here at
I had the pleasure of being interviewed by New York Times journalist Penelope Colston for her “Echoes of Scandinavia” article about Sámi craft and culture. Ms. Colston contacted me this past December about her upcoming piece and I am thrilled to have been included.
Who knew reindeer were strutting the streets of Manhattan! Many thanks to Ms. Colston for a fantastic
piece highlighting traditional and contemporary aspects of Sámi culture and
The Sámi are
the indigenous “reindeer” people of Scandinavia and can be from Norway, Sweden,
inland and parts of Russia.
national holiday is a relatively new day of celebration Norway adopted in 1992.
Historically the Sámi people were forced to integrate more with the general
population of Norway. Laws that were implemented even forbid the Sámi to speak
their own language.
Today Sámi National day is celebrated all over the country. The Sámi flag is raised, the national anthem is sung and reindeer meat and fish dishes are prepared as celebratory food. You can bet reindeer racing is part of the festivities!
The Sámi flag is the most important symbol for the national day. The red section of the circle represents the sun and the blue section represents the moon. The circle design was inspired by a Sámi poem describing the people as sons and daughters of the sun.
How will you celebrate Sámi National Day? Giitu (Sámi for thank you) for reading!
Whew! It’s been some time since I’ve posted. We just finished up our round of fall classes at the North House Folk School in Grand Marais, MN and the American Swedish Institute in Minneapolis, MN to name a few. Our students were awesome and they created beautiful pieces.
With the first whisper of snow showers in Southeast
Minnesota we are hunkering down in the shop getting ready for Christmas. I’ve
already had some lovely orders from folks determined to make Sámi Inspired
Bracelets for gifts this holiday season.
If you are planning on creating handmade bracelets make sure to have plenty of pewter thread and reindeer leather on hand or order our famous Sámi Inspired Bracelet Kits in a variety of styles and colors. The finished bracelet length for our kits is approximately 7.5 inches. If you need a longer bracelet let me know in the “notes” portion of your order form and I will adjust the pewter thread and leather strip measurements accordingly.
If you are brand new to our site, welcome! You are among fellow creatives so please subscribe and receive 20% off your first order. You’ll receive special offers, new learning videos and product information. For all our existing subscribers we want to say thank you by offering 10% off your next order! Use the code: November. The code is good until November 30, 2019 so get a jump on those Xmas gifts.
Too busy with Christmas cookies and choir practice? We are launching our finished bracelet gallery page just in time for Xmasin the next week!
Stay tuned for our new “How to Repair a Pewter Thread Bracelet – Tips and Tricks” video coming in January 2020.
There are so many things to enjoy during the summer months. One of my warm weather favorites is hosting classes without the adventure of traveling in the snow and sleet!
We hosted a lively group June 7-8 at the American Swedish Institute in Minneapolis, MN for the “Viking Posament” Bracelet Class. This was an especially exciting class for a couple of reasons.
The mighty Handcraft and Foods Programs Coordinator Erin Swenson-Klatt approached me earlier this year to develop class curriculum to complement the upcoming “Vikings Begin” exhibit currently on view at ASI. I’d done some research on the historical use of the pewter thread used in my Sámi Inspired Bracelet Classes and was delighted to find records of gold and silver thread decorations in Viking graves in Birka, Sweden dating from the 8th-10th century.
The term “posament” refers to a type of decorative trim using metal wire woven into braids or knots resembling Celtic knot work. It’s speculated that some of the knots also resemble the knot work art created by sailors of today. Since Birka was a large trade center and the Vikings were masters of maritime travel, it’s possible the technique was influenced by these designs.
This past week’s workshop was particularly special since it was the first official offering or ‘maiden voyage’ of a new class! I always ‘test kitchen’ my classes on my friends before I develop a completed offering to the variety of our teaching venues. My students were super helpful in giving me feedback regarding what did and didn’t work.
We began by practicing the triangular knot (sometimes called a “Viking star”) and “Josephine” knot using thick nylon cord. After everyone felt comfortable with the process we moved to using the same 0.35mm pewter thread I use in the Sámi Inspired Bracelet class. Students completed a bracelet using the “Josephine” knot style. The completed trim was sewn on to a reindeer leather strip and finished with a pewter button. A couple of sassy students (I’m talking about you two, Kim and Laura!) tackled a more challenging pattern incorporating both knot styles and the results were stunning!
If you want to get more of your ‘Viking’ on, join me at ASI September 28, 2019 for my Viking Knit Bracelet Class. We’ll create a timeless fine silver bracelet design in the style of nålbinding fit for a queen or Viking warrior. Check our website for class dates and venues.
Spring is finally here and summer is just around the
corner. Whether you’re busy planning
your vacations or your summer book list, make sure that creating something by
hand is part of your plan too.
Our new Sami Inspired Celtic Braid kitis the perfect project for those lazy summer days or even long rides in the car. This “Celtic” Braid pattern is reminiscent of designs prevalent during the Viking Age and adorned everything from sword hilts to jewelry. You can even find examples of this braid pattern decorating the hand painted pages in the Book of Kells at Trinity College in Dublin, Ireland.
If you’ve already mastered the art of our other kit selections, try this unique “twist” on theSaami Inspired Four Strand double braided braceletversion. The secret is all in how the individual strands are divided up before you begin braiding. Our 0.35mm tin thread is the perfect diameter to use with these patterns and the end result is a substantial and beautiful finished width ready to be attached to reindeer leather strips for bracelets.
We’ve also expanded our service by offering online video instructions to guide you through your projects! In addition to our awesome step by step instructional videos you’ll get tips and tricks from premier instructor Liz Bucheit that will have you braiding like a pro.
These bracelets are perfect for graduation and birthday
gifts and make wonderful wedding party gifts as well. Want a particular color
of leather not listed on our site? Send us an email and we’ll set you up!
Check out our class calendar and don’t forget to subscribe to receive 20% off your order! Stay tuned for new product offerings and special deals this summer.
Winter has been long here in the Midwest so we’ve had lots of time to work on developing some unique and exciting bracelet kits. We are also stoked about our new corresponding instructional videos to help you with your individual projects. Whether you are buying a kit or want to purchase pewter thread or other materials individually, our videos will help you measure out the proper length of materials for different braid styles without the waste.
Our Four Strand Double Braid Bracelet kit provides the materials to create this beautiful dense weave. If you have purchased our original Saami Inspired Double Braid Bracelet Kit and are ready to be challenged this is a great project to expand your skills.
The Four Strand Double Braid method is also an introduction to the myriad design possibilities you can explore. Try substituting one of your pewter thread strands with our 1.00 mm round colored leather cord. You can also try round silk cord, ribbon or even beads! If you find styles online and need help figuring out what to order in terms of length for particular braids don’t hesitate to contact me.
I’m happy to answer your questions so please leave me a comment and if you haven’t subscribed, please do and get 20% off your first order!
Saamisupplies.com Now Offers Imitation Reindeer Hide and Kits.
It never ceases to amaze me how I continue to learn from my students. I recently returned from an instructor’s retreat at the North House Folk School in Grand Marais, MN where I took a class in Aniishiinaabe style moccasin making from the very talented Marcie McIntire.
Funny thing, I found myself saying exactly what my students say during the course of my Saami Inspired Bracelet Classes. Things like “Am I doing this right? Can you check my work? How long does it take you (the instructor) to complete a pair of moccasins?” It’s easy to forget we are all students at one time or another and the experience taught me to listen more and be as empathetic as possible during the course of my classes.
I’ve also taken to inviting my students to give me suggestions about additional materials, tools and techniques.
One suggestion came from our client Chris who wanted an alternative material instead of reindeer hide to make her projects. After a bit of research we found the perfect solution.
We are now proud to offerimitation reindeer leather bracelet kits in a variety of colors! Instead of genuine antler buttons, kits will includepewter “replica” antler buttons in addition to needles and thread. These bracelets make great graduation, confirmation and birthday gifts for women and men. Try a beginning kit out today and stay tuned for more kit variations to come!
Happy spring everyone! We are excited to add some new products to our ever growing inventory of exceptional products.
Want to use a bit of “spring” when weaving and braiding? Try our lightweight plastic crafting clamp. This is a handy tool if you like to craft on the go. The handles have holes on each of the handle ends that are perfect for hooking your paper clip.
This is a great help so you can maintain even tension while you are working your pewter thread. The plastic pads on the clamp jaws won’t mar your surface. I’ve even used this clamp on international flights when I’ve wanted to work on my projects since I can attach it to just about anything until the “captain requests you to return your table tray to its upright position”!
Try some different button variations with our new antler inspired pewter buttons. These buttons are metal versions of the traditional reindeer antler variety and are one of a kind. Use them to add a “surprise” sparkle and polish to your creations.
We’ve got lots of exciting things happening with class offerings and private parties so make sure to check out our class calendar or call us for information on booking a personal venue or reserving a date for our Lanesboro, MN studio.