Making handles for smudging feathers

Grenwinae worked on our feathers and made these beautiful handles for my gifted, Vulture feathers. Since one feather was left handed, and the other right, I wanted to keep them as individuals, not made into a fan. Here they are shown with the tops facing up.


They were wrapped with dark brown deer lacing. The black and white beads are from Africa and have a large enough opening you could pull the leather through. On my Vulture feathers he put glue down the quill shaft to keep the leather in place while he wrapped it. Here you can see the difference in coloring from the top (dark brown to gray-brown) vs. the bottom (light gray) of the Vulture’s feather.


My Vulture feathers are a bit battered – they have lived real life! They come from a bird that does an unpleasant job and is sometimes little appreciated for it. Vulture is about inner qualities and not accepting outward beauty as a standard of worth. Turkey Vulture and Black Vulture, ride the thermals, high in the sky and trust in the wind to take them where they are needed and to reveal what they need.

Vulture is about the end of the journey and the final step. Vulture is about transformation, taking the physical and releasing the energy to spiritual form; preparing the body for its next journey; and serving as guide to the spirit’s final transmutation. I found a real connection to these feathers, more than I did to Turkey, during our Owl Ceremony.

Turkey is about generosity and blessings, giving and protecting; in other words a perfect feather for Grenwinaes’ personality! I’ve posted more details about these feathers in an earlier post.

My large beaded handle is a little heavy and Grenwinae wanted his own Turkey feather to be lighter in weight. Turkey feather is wrapped with white deer leather, and the beads are African, with the addition of some silver beading. On his Turkey feather, he used a drop of glue to keep the leather knot at the base of the feather’s quill from coming undone. I love how the pattern on the feather is mimicked by the striping on the beads.



If you do an Internet search for “smudging feathers” there are some great websites giving various directions. Most stone, glass or ceramic beads will have too narrow a thread opening so check before you purchase that it will serve.

We will be making some smudging fans later.


One thought on “Making handles for smudging feathers

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s