Project Description

This craft came into existence shortly after World War 1. A Métis woman from the Fort Simpson area, Mrs. Boniface Lafferty was inspired by a resident nun who used wool in work called “punch work.” Mrs. Lafferty used this technique using moose hair. Only the white hairs are plucked from the pelt, sorted by size length and colour, then washed and soaked. The hairs are then tied into bunches and dipped into dye. A bundle of about twenty hairs is created and laid down on the material. Thread is sewn, coming through the back of the material, around the bundle and back through the backing. The thread is pulled tight causing the bundle of hair to stand up in a tuft. The ends of the hairs are trimmed to desired shape. Tufting’s are often used to decorate slippers and mittens made of moose hide. Designs are sewn on velvet or birch bark and framed. Birch bark baskets are also decorated with tufting’s.