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Perhaps you have already seen one of these pendants that we call dream catchers, or sometimes even nightmare chasers? These are small objects usually hanging at the foot of the bed that represent a spider web with feathers attached to it. Although they are not native to the Land of the Rising Sun, they do have similarities with certain objects from this culture and they also go very well with Japanese decoration. So let's discover without further delay the history of these pendants, the magical powers attributed to them as well as some stylistic advice for integrating them into a Japanese decoration.

Origin of dream catchers

Dream catchers , or dreamwatchers to cite their original name, have their source in the Native American peoples of North America. They became popular quite late, in the 1960s, and it is precisely to the Objibwe tribe that the first versions of the dream catchers that we know today come from.

Unfortunately, when we want to dig even deeper into the origin of dream catchers to understand all their facets and discover all the myths linked to these mysterious pendants, several versions of the facts are available to us. And unfortunately, none seems to really convince historically and scientifically speaking. However, it may be interesting to look into the legends that revolve around dream catchers and their origin to fully understand their historical folklore.

sun dream catcher

First origin of dream catchers

In the first case, dream catchers would be derived from spider webs. While spiders were responsible for weaving webs above children's beds in an indigenous village to scare away bad dreams. They gradually found themselves understaffed due to the growing size of the village. They could no longer make enough canvases for all the children in the village.

They then set out to teach the women how to make artificial webs that could put an end to the nightmares of all the children in the village. You will have understood, these artificial webs were none other than the first versions of the dream catchers that we know today.

Secondary origin of dream catchers

The second version of the origin of dream catchers also offers us spider webs, but on the other hand the story that accompanies it has nothing to do with it. While a hunter was heading into the forest to feed his family, he found no game throughout his expedition and decided to explore the surrounding mountain before sunset, hoping not to have to return his hands. empty.

On his way he saw the entrance to a cave which led one to believe that a large game was hiding inside. What was his surprise when he found himself face to face with an evil monster with red eyes. He narrowly managed to escape and therefore returned without anything to eat that same evening to his village. However, the hunter was not at the end of his troubles. He spent long nights without even falling asleep and constantly dreamed of this accursed beast.

One day, in despair, he went into the forest to try to find a solution to his ordeal. Dead from fatigue, he fell asleep on the path in the forest at the foot of a tree. To his greatest surprise, he woke up in the early morning without having been the victim of bad dreams. Slowly opening his eyes he saw a spider web above his head and he understood. He understood that it was this web that had chased away all his bad dreams to make way for a long night of rest. This hunter then hastened to spread this discovery to the village and dream catchers were the invention that resulted from these spider webs to protect sleep.

feather dream catcher

Origin third of dream catchers

Still within a Native American tribe, the third story tells us that a tribal chief decided to bring together the wise men of his village to find a solution to the nocturnal hauntings of the members of his tribe. One of these same wise men took the initiative to exile himself far from the village, in the heart of a mountain, in order to take the time to find a real solution to this problem of bad dreams.

One evening, while meditating, he had a vision which he interpreted as a revelation to destroy the nocturnal evil in his tribe. This vision was none other than a willow circle in which a spider's web appeared. He therefore prescribed these mysterious pendants in his village that we call dream catchers in order to filter the negative waves that hovered in the minds of the unfortunate.

Magical powers of dream catchers

After what we have just seen, it is almost certain that we do not know the exact origin of dream catchers within Native American tribes. On the other hand, we are pretty much dealing with the mystical powers attributed to them.

As its name suggests, the dream catcher helps to filter out the bad spirits that could come to worry us at night in our sleep. And therefore leave room for the sweetest dreams. However, it is important that the dream catcher is something personal, designed by us or offered by someone close to us. If necessary, the dream catcher would lose these magical powers.

Build your own dream catcher

The subject of this article is not to teach you how to build your own dream catcher. But for the bravest among you, don't hesitate to watch numerous articles or even videos that will explain how to do it. Here for example is a video from the Lavis de CHERRY channel:

Integrate dream catchers into Japanese decoration

After seeing that according to many legends these pendants ensure the peace of our sleep, we will discover that they also go very well with certain Japanese decorative elements.

Dream catchers combined with origami

As ChachoOo shared on his DIY Project page, dream catchers, for example, go very well with origami, Japanese folds which often represent cranes. With a little color and imagination this is what it can look like:

homemade dream catcher

Obviously, nothing stops us from imagining even more complex combinations, with different folds as well as the addition of feathers to the dream catcher. In any case, here is a wonderful way to combine the ancestral beliefs of Native American tribes with the technical quality of Japanese origami.

Dreamcatchers in the garden

Although dream catchers must, according to tradition, be hung at the foot of the bed to chase away spirits. These are objects which have since become widely democratized and which have taken on a more decorative function than a truly practical one. So it would be a shame to deprive yourself of these canvases which allow you to bring a zen and soothing atmosphere to a place.


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