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.
In addition to creating custom jewelry in our Lanesboro, MN studio our Saami Inspired Bracelet Classes keep us on the road for a good portion of the year. We’ve been teaching these classes for 16 years and have introduced this unique craft to over 1300 students. After teaching and presenting in dozens of venues and traveling to three states just this past year, we are happy to be hosting our final class of 2017 on Saturday November 18 from 10-5pmin Lanesboro, MN. Need a jump on some handmade Xmas gifts? You’ll be the most coveted Secret Santa around!
Summer is flying by and we’ve been “festival flying” in addition to hosting classes and creating custom designs for our clients. Last week we were demonstrating filigree jewelry techniques at the Vesterheim Norwegian-American Museum during Nordic Fest and I gave a presentation entitled “Traditions in Transition: Filigree Jewelry by Liz Bucheit”. Luckily I can put away my helgestak until next year!
Join us this Sunday August 6th, 10 – 4pm for the Great Makers Exchange at the American Swedish Institute in Minneapolis, MN. We’ll have a booth displaying our jewelry and I’ll host a mini Saami Inspired workshop.
Come enjoy a great day of craft, food and fellowship!
How about getting something really cool for your Viking man? Leather bracelets make great gifts for men. Our Saami Inspired Bracelet styles are created using braided and woven pewter thread, genuine reindeer hide and antler buttons.
These bracelets look like a cuff but are more comfortable and go with everything from jeans to a suit. Don’t know your man’s wrist size? No worries. Most styles come in a standard 9” length and can be custom ordered should you require a specific size.