Spirit of the Plains

Are two heads better than one?

In The Lost Symbol, Dan Brown says that ” two heads are better than one and yet two heads are not twice better, they are many, many times better. Multiple minds working in unison magnify a thought’s effect… exponentially. This is the inherent power of prayer groups, healing circles, etc….harnessing universal consciousness has the potential to transform our world…” This month Spirit of the Plains is making prayer pillows. As each loop is hooked a Read more…

By Nancy, ago
Spirit of the Plains

A season for thanksgiving…

This is a wonderful time of year. The air is crisp, clear and cool. The leaves are showing off shades of yellow, orange and crimson. The clouds are swirling in a sea of blue and the sun shines brilliantly through pink, gray and fuchsia dawns and dusks. “Give thanks to the Lord for He is good. His love endures forever.” This psalm comes to mind as I consider the beauty of His earth and this Read more…

By Nancy, ago
Spirit of the Plains

“Our hearts are in the weaving…”

Kathy M’Closkey interviewed a family when doing her research on Navajo aesthetics. One of the mothers was a woman in her sixties. She had raised her eleven children on her weaving. She was told not to share the weaving stories her grandfather had told her as it would lessen the value of her work. The sacred weaving has “wealth in it…our hearts are in it.” Do you feel your heart is in your handwork? Many Read more…

By Nancy, ago
Spirit of the Plains

“Tradition comes from within…”

Kathy M’Cluskey speaks of tradition in her research of Navajo aesthetics and quotes Irene Clark who says, “weaving goes with prayers, songs. Thank Mother Earth for plants, for sky, the air, good feeling to dye..it’s all in the weaving..in your hands, tools, in your mind. Design and coloring, how you think of yourself is how you weave..good thoughts, prayers, songs. When you start to weave, design comes in your mind, in your hands.” I have Read more…

By Nancy, ago
Spirit of the Plains

Navajo weavers’ feeling for beauty, harmony and order…

Kathy M’Closkey conveys an interesting idea about Navajo weaving as a form of metacommunication. Her explanation ties the sacred and secular aspects of Navajo life together and the result is “hozho”, “the combining of “beauty/harmony/ local order”. Many others who describe the beauty of Navajo weaving separate the sacred process of creation from the aesthetic beauty of the object and thus fail to understand the “holistic” beauty inherent in Navajo weaving. I can relate to Read more…

By Nancy, ago
Spirit of the Plains

“Something in those stitches…”

In A Gentleman in Moscow by Amor Towles, Count Alexander Rostov speaks of a memory of his sister, Helena, while reading a Pushkin passage to her as she embroidered a piece of lace… ” ‘Perhaps there had been something in those stitches,’ thought the count, ‘some gentle wisdom she was mastering through the contemplation of every little loop.’ ” Rug hooking is a contemplative art. Not only is the artist connected to the plains, where Read more…

By Nancy, ago
Spirit of the Plains

Generational connections…

Just as Navajo weavers passed down the process of rug making to the next generation so have my Scandinavian ancestors used their hands to work fibers into their crafts. My mom’s dad and mom came to Ellis Island in the early twentieth century from Sweden and Finland. My mom and her three sisters learned knitting and crocheting from their Finnish mother, and my mom has taught me and my daughter to knit and crochet. Feeling Read more…

By Nancy, ago
Spirit of the Plains

What is the Spirit of the Plains?

For many moons I have observed my mom’s love of creating with her hands. As a young child, she taught me to knit and crochet. This was not an easy task as she is left-handed and I am right-handed. With patience and love, she showed me how to crochet a granny square and eventually I made a blanket. Mom also showed me how to knit scarves and eventually I knit a sweater vest. In junior Read more…

By Nancy, ago