Make your own dreamcatchers. Five examples using arts and crafts materials: paper plates, yarn, paint, feathers, beads, stickers, markers.
Dreamcatchers arts and crafts project using paper plates, yarn, paint, feathers, beads, stickers, markers, photographs and whatever else you want.

How to make a dreamcatcher

And how to catch a dream

Follow the steps below to create your own dreamcatcher to capture dreams before they getaway. And maybe you’ll capture a dream that you want to a goal for your life! If you already have a big dream, you can create a custom dreamcatcher to help make that dream come true.

A brief history of the dreamcatcher

Traditional Navajo dreamcatcher
A traditional dreamcatcher made by Navajos on the Hopi Reservation that hangs over Scott’s bed.

The dreamcatcher originated in the Native North American culture. In Ojibwe culture, the dreamcatcher is called the “spider web charm.” Traditionally, it is used to snare bad dreams and protect children while they slept in their cradle. It is made using a willow hoop with a woven net or web and may contain sacred items such as feathers or beads. In modern times, the dreamcatcher has come to mean different things: to some it is a symbol of unity, and to others it is used to catch good dreams. 

Supplies:

  • Paper plates (buy a colorful plate, if not get some paint)
  • Scissors
  • Hole punch
  • Glue
  • Yarn
  • Feathers
  • Decorative items, like beads, charms, stickers, glitter.
  • Drawing tools, like markers, pens, crayons

Instructions 

How to dream while making dreamcatchers

While this is a fun crafting activity all by itself, what we are really doing is putting a concept into action to make it more memorable and real. So, while the kids are making their dreamcatchers, encourage them to discuss their dreams. The sharing of ideas will spark a lot of new dreams. If the subject comes up, you can also discuss their fears (nightmares) and offer some reassurance. For example, if they feel “not good enough” to do what they want, say, “Everyone feels this way when they start.” 

Step-by-step instructions for making a dream catcher.

  1. Arrange your supplies.
  2. Prepare your plate (hoop).
  3. Weave a web.
  4. Hang your feathers. 
  5. Decorate your plate.
  6. Add your dream inspiration — the most important step.
  7. Hang your dreamcatcher.
  8. Admire your creation.

Step 1: Arrange your supplies.

Arrange all your supplies within easy arm’s reach.

Scissors, hole punch, glue, colorful yarn, feathers, beads, charms, stickers, pom poms, markers, crayons..
Arts and crafts projects can get messy. Stay organized with a craft bin.

Dreamcatcher workstation with cups and plates full of supplies.
The dreamcatcher workstation with all the supplies arranged within easy reach.

Step 2: Prepare your plate (hoop).

Cut a hole in the center of the plate, leaving about 2 inches around the edge. Punch about 8 holes around the edge equidistance apart. Now you can paint your plate with an extra color or draw a pattern.

A colorful paper plate with the center cut out and 8 holes punched.
Steps 1-4 already finished. A colorful paper plate with the center cut out and 8 holes punched.

Step 3: Weave a web.

When the paint is dry, weave a web to catch your dreams. Zig zag your yarn through the holes of the plate. You can add beads after each pass through a hole. Have fun and try to make interesting patterns. They don’t have to be perfect.

Dreamcatcher workstation and girls weaving a web with colorful yarn.
Weaving a dream-catching web.

Step 4: Hang your feathers.

Cut three pieces of yarn and tie a feather to the bottom of each one. String beads and charms onto the yarn above the feathers. Then punch 3 holes on the bottom of your plate, one for each beaded strand of feathers, and tie your feathers to the plate. 

The girls making their dreamcatchers at the craft table.
Beginning to add the feathers.

Step 5: Decorate your plate.

Decorate the edge of the plate with stickers, beads, glitter — whatever you want.

Step 6: Add your dream inspiration

Now the most important step — add your dream inspiration. 

If you don’t have a specific dream yet or want to explore a new one, decorate your plate with anything that inspires you. For example, “If you like bicycles, add a sticker of a bicycle. Or you can write, “I love to bicycle.” Add more pictures and even inspirational quotes. The idea is that you want to add a lot of inspiration and let your sleeping mind mix them together. When you wake up, you’ll have a whole new set of possibilities.

If you already have a dream, you can still add lots of inspiration. Maybe you’ll dream of something similar but different, or maybe your dream will get even bigger and better. For example, if you want to be a ballerina, add a photograph of yourself dancing, or pictures of tutus — anything related to your dream.

A child's dream catcher that catches the good dreams, in this case: friends, laughter and smiles.
You can see this dreamer loved to laugh. She included the inspirational phrase, “Laughter is the best medicine.” What dreams do you think would work for this dreamer?

Step 7: Hang your dreamcatcher.

Punch one hole at the top of your plate and add a loop yarn. Now, hang your dreamcatcher above your bed.

Step 8: Admire your creation.

And, you’re done. Well… almost. The last step of any creation is to feel a sense of accomplishment. Feel proud! Admire your skill. Feeling good is like a reward, and it encourages to create even more. Feeling good also is like a magnetic force. So, if your dream is anywhere nearby, it will be attracted to you. It’s like smiling — it’s contagious.

We hope you have fun. Please send us a picture of your dreamcatchers and will post them here and, maybe, you’ll inspire someone else to dream.

Dreamcatchers on display
Our Dream Workshop birthday party girls proudly displaying their final dreamcatchers,
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Editorial Staff

Editorial Staff

I'm the person that secretly runs this place. PS. I can fly!
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