Dreamcatcher tattoos are one of the most popular tattoos for women. They are often embellished to have personal meaning. To better understand the enigmatic meaning of the dreamcatcher tattoo, let’s first look at the origin of dreamcatchers.
The origin of dreamcatchers goes back hundreds if not thousands of years. They originated with the Native American Ojibwa of Southern Canada and the Midwestern United States. It was said that a mythical character called the “Spider Woman” would weave a web to catch negative energy and dreams. The good dreams are passed down through the feathers to sleeping infants.
These dreamcatchers were adopted by other North American tribes through inter-cultural sharing and discovery. They are sacred talismans and should be treated with respect.
There are many changes that artists make to traditional dreamcatcher tattoos. These can be additions to the original design, stylistic changes, or by adding colors.
The hoop represents the infinite universe. There may be adornments such as butterflies or flowers interlaced around the hoop. It may look like a traditionally wrapped willow vine, or it could be filled with a pattern. The hoop can be made to represent a crescent moon, too.
The spider’s web represents how negative energy is filtered. An original dreamcatcher’s web connects to the hoop at eight points representing a spider’s legs. A few beads were woven into the pattern. This is where a lot of artists take liberties with the design. You’ll see simple flower shapes, lotus flowers, mandalas, and compasses take the place of the web. Animals are placed in the center, too. They may represent a pet or a spirit animal.
The feathers of a dreamcatcher dangle from strips of leather. The original feathers were from a black hen. Feathers work well with watercolor designs. So many of today’s dreamcatcher tattoos have colorful feathers.
You’ll also find dreamcatcher tattoos with many smaller hoops. These can represent family members or friends. Some will be traditional, while others may have their own designs in place of the web.
The hoop steps away from its traditional roots with a yellow ribbon. The purple bead is a standout. Purple often represents transition. Baby blue represents peace.
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This is a nice example of how artists can create a watercolor and line art piece. The birds represent freedom.
Remember that every color in your tattoo can have its own meaning. The pink hoops here could represent femininity or a baby girl.
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Using a compass in place of the spider’s web that usually sits in the middle of the hoop. means this owner is following her dreams.
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Flowers sit on the hoop of this updated American Classic style tattoo. White daisies are symbolic of loyalty, purity, and religious devotion.
This dreamcatcher tattoo is a study in trios. There are three different flowers, three small hoops, and three feathers in each strand.
The center bead is intricate for a dreamcatcher bead.
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Blue butterflies represent transitioning to adulthood. We can see this as being free to pursue her passions and dreams.
The soft colors give this dreamcatcher tattoo a feminine look.
Using a dreamcatcher with a lotus flower blends the beliefs of the Ojibwa tribe and Buddhism.
A very detailed hoop with purple beads. It’s a romantic talisman with colors and symbols of love.
The shading and small leaves on the roses enhances the feel of this tattoo.
Dreamcatcher tattoos often use quotes to leave no doubt about the tribute or symbolism behind the art. Tulips can mean passion and love. This tattoo represents devotion.
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An artistic and detailed black and gray style tattoo. It appears to be floating or falling.
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Dreamcatcher tattoos work well on the thigh. It allows for a lot of creativity and makes a big statement.
The shading seen in the feathers is a common trait among Black and Gray style tattoos.
A rose takes the place of the infinity hoop. Red roses mean love, while green roses mean good luck, new beginnings, or fertility.
This tattoo is a celebration of unity while being protected. Using only two contrasting colors makes this tattoo look unique.
Tattoos often represent spiritual or cultural ties that reach beyond Native American tribes. There are several symbols in this dreamcatcher tattoo.
Notable are the lucky horseshoe and Irish Trinity knot inside the smaller hoops.
The incredible amount of detail and heavy black ink in the feathers of this dreamcatcher tattoo reclassify this style from Black and Gray to Tribal style.
A red dragon can represent power and love. Here, it protects the dreams of its owner. Purple feathers can represent transcendence.
So we see someone who’s transforming into a powerful, courageous person.
Dragons images are in every culture. Different colors have different meanings and different dragons have different abilities. You’ll have lots of options if you choose to include a dragon with your dreamcatcher design.
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Yes, you can have small dreamcatcher tattoos. Dreamcatcher tattoos will work on small areas like your foot. The feathers and leather laces that hold the beads need to be short.
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A pure fantasy illustration that would be an incredible tattoo. Wolves represent strength and solitude. A fairy holds a teddy bear which could symbolize children or childlike qualities.
White ink is difficult to maintain on tattoos. If you wanted this, you might consider shifting the white to a pastel color.
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Wolves represent loyalty, intelligence, and strength. This tattoo can represent protection against negative energy.
Owls represent intelligence. This can mean the dreamcatcher is there to protect and promote wisdom for the wearer.
Owls are often tributes to someone who has passed on and is now watching over and protecting the owner.
Horses can mean endurance and strength. It can also be a spirit guide or a tribute to a dear four-legged friend.