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Make a Red Gourd Shakere
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Step 6

Make a “Snake” with Cowrie Shells Gourd Shekere

  1. Put an Image on the Gourd

  2. Drill the Cowrie Shell Beads

  3. Knot on Shell Beads (Noise makers)

  4. Cut Bottom Hole Add Knots, Perform Winter Solstice Rituals

  5. Add Feathers

  6. It Flies


Make an Gourd Rattle with Black Walnut Knockers

  1. Prepare Black Walnut Beads

  2. Preparing the Design, Cutting and Pyrography

  3. Coloring the Rattle

  4. Attaching the Walnuts
  5. Add the Feathers and Finish the Rattle


A Foraged Foxtail

Honnu Turtle Guiro
 : Attaching the Walnuts to Make the Rattle's Noise :

I struggled at first with how to attach the walnuts to the gourd. I began to envision the rattlers as the “hairdo” and realized I should use a double strand rather than a single strand.
first walnut attached

This photo shows my toolkit for this stage and most of the supplies. The dremel tool has the same bit I used on the walnuts - drilling a gourd is considerably easier than a walnut and the drill bit is one of my primary tools for carving holes in gourds. Also visible is a pack of star buttons I got at the craft store and which I used as the beads except on the upper right and left rattles next to the face. You can also see a pack of hemp beading line, a pair of hemostats, a clothespin and the paddd envelope where I store my rooster skin (it is the envelope it came in from my ebay vendor).

I doubled the line at the modpoint and pushed it through the hole I had drilled, then fished it out with the hemostats.I pushed the end loop through a button, opened the loop and passed it around the outside of the button so that the line was fixed on the button, and the botton acts as a stopper to hold the line. I held the line on the outside with a clothespin to keep it from pulling all the way through while making the button stopper for the inside, which would be a bummer.

Next I pushed the pair of lines through a second star button on the outside of the gourd and fixed it in place with a half hitch, leaving some slack so the walnut bead can swing. then passed the pair of lines through the walnut - this turned out to be easy, much to my relief. Finally, I added another star button on the outside of the walnut, again leaving a little slack and fixing it with a half hitch. With other line I might be concerned about fixing with a single half hitch, but the hemp twine is quite stiff and holds its shape.

hold your mouth right 1hold your mouth right 2

At this point Ikey came by and made the "arrrr" I am a pirate noise and reminded me you have to hold your mouth right to get your art done properly.

attaching the rest of the walnuts

I drilled the rest of the holes for the hairdo - two rows of 5 holes on the bottom and one row of 6 above and I attached the rest of the beads as above. A count showed I would have far too few star buttons, so I changed to regular buttons from the sewing kit. I used 4 reproduction ancient beads - also acquired at the craft store - for the upper right and left nuts. You can see in the picture these have quite different beads from the start beads. You can also see some of the butons used as anchors on the inside of the gourd.

 : Links/Sponsors :

Make a Shakere is sponsored by Fertility Futures, a firm focused on helping make families possible. Many would be parents are unable to realize their dreams of a family with children due to fertility issues. Fertility Futures brings medical specialists and counselors to bear on these difficult problems, helping couples with a range of solutions from fertility therapy through the use of surrogates to carry a child through pregancy for a family. In order to support this service, Fertility Futures also solicits egg donors for its ova donation program. People who face challenges in becoming parents, or healthy women who are willing to become egg donors should consider visiting Fertility Futures.

Rhythm Workers Union my inspiration for all things rhythmic

Guerilla Poetry Insurgency some wonderful people who understand the power and importance of the spoken word


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