After a couple of days the funnest part of the project is putting in some seeds, black beans and popcorn, adding the handle, and decorating. Since the head is rawhide it can be affected by moisture so its a good idea to waterproof it with shellac, which also makes a good looking finish.
Think for a moment—everything starts with a thought. Your home was first a thought in someone’s mind. Your car started out in the mind of a designer or engineer. Everything that exists in the present moment was first a thought. Thinking is a creative force. We are always thinking. There is never a second when we are otherwise engaged. Even in sleep or unconsciousness we are thinking; muscles require sleep, yet thought processes require no rest.
Some thoughts create corporeally, others dies in the realm of thought. Some thoughts are meant to be created in our world and others are meant to remain thoughts only. Our thoughts reside in a realm that is free of the limitations of this world; that is, we are free to think anything. We can imagine anything. Since we can imagine or think anything we wish, we can also choose what we will think. We control our reality by controlling our thoughts. Our world is exactly as we have created it. Dr. Deepak Chopra refers to the space between each thought as “The realm of infinite possibilities.”
Here’s a couple of pieces of buffalo skin cut out in the shape of the rattle head. They have soaked in water for several hours to soften.
Buffalo skin is very thick and tough. This piece measured 1/8 inch thick. Two layers together makes 1/4 inch to try and sew together. First punch holes with a tool and hammer to make that possible.
Its important that the holes are aligned. Clip the skins together.
Use the tools to punch the holes around the perimeter.
Whip stitch them together. This example uses hemp cord.
Fill it using a funnel and some play sand.
Pack as much sand as possible into it. You might be surprised how much you can get in there and you will get a better, rounder shape if you really work at it. I use the eraser end of a pencil and push it down in to pack the sand.
Keep working more sand into it and shape it how you like it.
Put the stick you will be using as the handle in and straighten it. It will dry tightly around the stick. You will be able to wiggle it out to pour the sand out and add seeds when you are ready to assemble the rattle.
Hang it to dry for 2 days. This helps hold the shape you want. If you don’t hang it the shape will flatten a little as it dries. I have put them into a paper cup about the same size to dry which works, but I prefer hanging it.
Pick up one of these Native American flutes and you won’t want to put it down. Seriously. They are so much fun to play. You don’t even have to know how to read music to play beautiful tunes. In fact in the traditional method there is no written music to read. The music is what comes out of YOU.
Using your own creativity with a few techniques, some that you come up with yourself even, practically anybody can do it.