Sven-Åke about the noidpattern

Rediscovered old south Lappish, Sami pattern from Vilhelmina

My name is Sven-Åke Risfjell and I make  Lappish, Sami handicraft. I started my busines 30 year ago. I work in southlappish traditional in form and pattern engraving. Since 2007 I have done research in an old pattern that I found in an old book from Nordiska Museum in Stockholm. From our house we have a nice view over lake Malgomaj with the panorama mountain Marsfjällen in the distance 100 km away. However my eyes felt on a picture of an old belt that has belonged to a noid (which is to compare with the indians medicinman or schaman in Sibirien). That noid lived in Marsfjällen area. The item on that belt that was interesting to me was a bag Daaskoe, that men in the south Lappish, Sami area wear on the belt. It was interesting in four aspects.

  1. It was from our area
  2. It had an interesting wordinscription
  3. Amazingly it was made of antler. Usually they are made of skin and coloured chloth with tin broadery.
  4. It was engraved in four different parts. Three of these pattern parts were listed in the 1920´s but the upper left corner had an engraving I never had seen before.

The belt was left to Nordiska Museum in Stockholm in 1895. Before that the belt has been in the noid, shaman family for generations.I wrote to the museum and asked for permission to study the belt. The result is that I started to engrave this old pattern on my own handicraft. I showed it for the first time in Ajjte museum in Jokkmokk at the wintermarket 2010. I held a seminari at the museum and presents this unique find to the audience. It is like finding a new pyramid in the desert.

I make Lappish, Sami knives, boxes, jewellery and of course I also make the bag Daaskoe of antler but without the words wich I know have special spiritual importance and belongs to the original nåjd/shaman daaskoe.

My wife and I received a culture prize in Vilhelmina 2009 for our work and the money we received from that prize we have used to make a textile collection with this old pattern on. It is a blanket, a towel and a tablecloth. We cooperate with one linenweavery and one woolweavery that help us weaving the products.

Something so powerful as a noids, shamans belongings have been inspiration for my handicraft decoration and our textiles.