In some Native American cultures, a dreamcatcher or dream catcher (Ojibwe: asabikeshiinh, the inanimate form of the word for “spider”) is a handmade willow hoop, on which is woven a net or web. The dreamcatcher may also include sacred items such as certain feathers or beads. Traditionally they are often hung over cradles as protection. It originates in Ojibwe culture as the “spider web charm” Ojibwe: asubakacin “net-like”, White Earth Band; bwaajige ngwaagan “dream snare”, Curve Lake Band, a hoop with woven string or sinew meant to replicate a spider’s web, used as a protective charm for infants.
Dreamcatchers should be hung outside on the line for the wind to blow through before hanging indoors. From time to time it is advised to cleanse these now and again by hanging outside.