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Catherine Boechler

Catherine Blackburn

We Honor Bear

English River First Nation


My beadwork based work utilizes 2 thread applied technique, however other historical adornment techniques such as animal hair tufting are often included. I am inspired by my late Setsuné (grandmother) and her incredible talent of garment making, hide-tanning and adornment and the intention behind these slow-fashion processes. I love to challenge myself to create realistic portraits of people, animals and florals using vintage/antique micro beads stitched to home-tanned animal hide. For the work, ‘Carry it Forward’ I re-interpreted some of my late grandmother’s beaded designs, stitching them into smoked moose hide and including medicine holders on the reverse side. As a child my grandmother gifted us grandchildren many special items, among them, small medicine pouch necklaces to carry our most precious things. For this work, I created a purse that doubles as a medicine bag, allowing the wearer to carrying forward with them ancestral knowledge, beauty, medicine, story and strength.