The Ojibwa and Lakota Native American tribes have a long standing tradition of making dreamcatchers. The simple willow hoops (round or teardrop) complete with "spiderwebs" are meant to catch the dreams of children. The Ojibwa believe the charms trap bad dreams and thus filter good dreams to the sleepers while conversely, the Lakota believe good dreams are caught for the benefit of the sleepers.

Whatever the version, dreamcatchers caught on with the other tribes during the American Indian Movement in the 1960's and 1970's.  They are now universally admired.

I bought the pair of bead and wire dreamcatcher earrings -shown above and below- from a craft store in, of all places, Newfoundland while on holiday there some years ago.  Why?  They were the tiniest detailed dreamcatchers I have ever seen. I don't have the patience to make them this small!

But here are some larger tutorials for those who wish to try making dreamcatchers.  Remember you can scale up or down the size of these dreamcatchers depending on whether you want to make earrings or pendants.

First up is the dreamcatcher earrings tutorial by Rebecca Minkoff over at the Minkette blog. 

The delightful "heartcatcher" is a wire worked version of the dreamcatcher. This tutorial is by Kei of Unfortunately Oh!

The pendant version by Camille is worth a watch especially if you prefer a video tutorial.

Note that a solitary bead in the middle of the web could denote the spider that made the web. More beads than one is thought to represent the trapped dreams. The feathers often attached to the dreamcatchers could represent soft "ladders" for the good dreams to slide down on. 

Native American Vault : Legend of the Dreamcatcher

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Original Post by THE BEADING GEM
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