Saturday, March 26, 2011

Ojo de Dios Handcraft Tutorial

Back in the day, my friends and I would sit outside underneath the porch with our variegated yarn, and single colored yarn to make these wall hangings. Most of the time we would use craft sticks, other times we would make them out of twigs that we found in our back woods.
We had quite alot of fun and then would give them to other friends in our neighborhood, exchange amongst ourselves the different designs and of course our family. Little did I really realize the history behind the handicraft. I thought you might find it interesting the background of something that we enjoyed making amongst ourselves crafting during the summer vacations.
The Huichol Indians of western Jalisco, Mexico are thought to have originated the artwork. The Ojo de Dios, or God's Eye, is a simple or complex weaving made across two or more sticks which means "the power to see and understand things unknown." When a child is born, the central eye is woven by the father, then one eye is added for every year of the child's life until the child reaches the age of five. Original Huichol Crosses are extremely rare to come by. There are many that are being made for the tourist market, but they do not carry the same traditional and spiritual significance.
How to make a God's Eye
The materials that you need include:
  • 2 sticks about the same length and similar thickness (about 5 inches). Can also use craft sticks, etc.
  • glue
  • 1 yarn
Place both sticks on the table and cross them over each other. In the center of the bottom stick, place a bit of glue and then place the other stick on top of it, forming a cross. Let them dry. OR if your child is older you do not have to use glue and just cross them over and hold in one hand.

Gather one end of the yarn you have selected and tie the loose end of the stick as close as possible to the place where the two sticks come together (the center). Leave around 7 inches of "tail" hanging from the knot. Hold the sticks (in the cross), in one hand and with the other hand bring the yarn under one stick, around, then over to the next one, under it, around it, and over to the next one, repeating the pattern to the desired size you like.

Cut the yarn, leaving a tail of around 12 inches. Tie the two "tails" together and trim the ends.


  1. Thank you so much, I remember making these in the 60s in school and couldn't remember how it was done. Beautifully clear instructions!