I make a selection of reindeer leather jewelry, bracelets, arm bands, necklaces using natural materials and techniques in the tradition of my ancestors. I use natural reindeer leather, organic cotton yarns and pewter thread.
The bracelets or arm bands are decorated with organic cotton bands that have been woven on Sami style heddles or a Scandinavian band loom. The Sami wove colourful bands for many uses, as shoe laces, as belts, as ties for their sleds, as harnesses for the reindeer, as trim and decoration on their clothing. Some of the bracelets are also embroidered with Pewter thread, known as poor man’s silver that was also used to decorate their clothing.
Reindeer leather is a precious commodity that is difficult to source. Most of the reindeer hides are used by the Saami people for their own clothing and personal use. I am only able to purchase the reindeer leather in small quantities that are sold as scrap leather. Nothing is wasted. I order all of my supplies from the Sami people in Norway, Sweden and Finland.
Some of the Sami bracelets and arm bands are also trimmed with fish leather.
Please check my Etsy shop for the latest bracelets in stock.
I have designed some new tablet weaving cards that are made of durable plastic, because I didn’t like to use the matt board ones. I found that they tended to wear out rather quickly.
I designed these cards to be made of plastic so that they would be able to withstand the friction that is placed on the tablets during weaving. The edges are smooth and the cards turn easily.
The plastic tablets are not mass produced but are made locally by skilled craftsmen.
The Paivatar tablet cards come in 4 colours: Red, Yellow, Blue and Green
One face of the card has a logo, the other side is blank. The multiple colours allow you to use different colours if you are turning groups of cards in different directions. The cards are not numbered, but you can easily write numbers or letters on them with a permanent marker to help you keep track while weaving. Be sure to let the ink dry before using the tablets.
The cards are slightly smaller than the standard tablet weaving cards that are on the market (60 mm square) Because the cards are thin and slightly smaller in size than other tablet weaving cards, I find it easy to hold several in my hand – and I have fairly small hands. The thinner size is also better when working with fine yarns as it allows the warp yarns to be sett closer together, much as in weaving with a fine dent reed.
The holes in the cards are also slightly smaller than the standard cards. This helps to keep the warp threads in alignment while weaving, as there is less play in the warp.
You may now purchase the Paivatar Tablet weaving cards and other weaving supplies through my Etsy and EBay shops.
Another style of band that I weave are woven using tablets or cards. The tablets usually have 3-6 holes and the warp yarn is threaded through. Complex patterns can be woven by twisting or turning the cards in different directions. The end of the warp can be tied to a post, a table leg, and is woven backstrap style. The warp can also be wound onto a small loom that helps control the tension while weaving.
Narrow bands using tablets has been woven in Karelia and Finland since the early Iron Age. Many of the woven belts that I weave use these traditional Karelian patterns. I use hand dyed wool that I have dyed with natural plant colours to weave these belts and sashes.
Tablet woven bands and weaving yarns can be purchased through my Etsy Shop.
Hand woven bands have many uses. They can be used as belts, straps for carrying bags, lanyards, guitar straps or anything that needs to be tied. A specially woven band is lovely when sewn or stitched onto a hand woven or knitted article. Coco Chanel’s signature jackets were made famous because of the unique hand woven trims.
These woven ribbons have been made using a traditional Scandinavian band loom. The bands can be custom ordered in any width or length or colour. The cotton bands are made with organically grown cotton, and are available in 42 colours.
Hand Woven Cotton Belts
The woven bands also make lovely belts. These are woven using organic cotton, and trimmed with reindeer leather.
When I weave bands I often have short pieces left over. I don’t like to waste what I’ve woven so I make these woven bands into bookmarks.
I trim one end of the bookmark with a small scrap of reindeer leather. The other end of the bookmark has a fringe finish.
Hand Woven Key Fob Wristlets
The hand woven bands also make great key fobs or wrist straps.
I weave many sample bands – some of these turn into key fobs.