Mini Button Blanket Workshop
We partnered with Kwakiutl Elder and Button Blanket maker Noreen Hunt and created a workshop on how to make your own mini Button Blanket making workshop. In the session, participants learn about the teachings of Button Blankets and will be able to make a small version. With a few easily available supplies, you can follow along at the links below and create your own mini button blankets!
Please take note that the kits are no longer available, but folks are welcome to refer to the following resources.
We want to share our gratitude to Noreen for sharing her knowledge and teachings with our VIRL community members.
A Message from Elder Noreen Hunt
Our Blankets are important to our families. If you have been to a Potlatch or have seen a film of one, you will have seen many Blankets.
Each Blanket tells a story: that is why each Blanket is unique. The designs on each Blanket tells where the person is from. The designs are family crests. They are also designed by their own artist, and every artist has their unique expression.
When we go to a Potlatch, we bring our Blankets, or we borrow someone else’s Blanket.
A Potlatch or feast may be for a marriage, a memorial, a totem pole raising, the naming of children, to transfer a dance to a specific person, and other special occasions. Today, as before, the Potlatch is for sharing.
You can add whatever you want to your own Blanket, and this will make it yours.
At the top of the Blanket, between the red borders, you use a piece of material – a long rectangle – of the material of your choice. You might choose a material that has meaning for you. This piece travels with you while you are dancing.
When we dance, as we enter the stage, we always turn to our left. This allows you to enter into the spirit world. When the dance is finished, before we leave the stage, we turn to the left, to come back to our world.