Robert D’Alimonte and Murisa Printup from Tuscarora Woodworks, in Tuscarora Nation in New York, created an Indigenous wooden turtle island fidget spinner. (Supplied by Robert D’Alimonte) Fidget spinners are everywhere, and now a Native American woodworking company from Tuscarora Nation in New York is giving the popular toy an Indigenous spin.
The simple toy consists of a flat structure typically made of metal or plastic, which spins thanks to a bearing in the centre. Fidget spinners are marketed as helpful stress relief tools for children who have difficulty focusing and a need to fidget.
Tuscarora Woodworks owners Robert D’Alimonte and Murisa Printup, who are a couple as well as business partners, saw an opportunity to jump on the spinner craze after spotting how popular the spinner toys are among the kids in their family.
"The other day we were hanging out with our nephews, and they had a whole collection of these fidget spinners," said Robert D’Alimonte.
"We thought we’d try our hand at a wooden one, and the first design we came up with was the turtle, to represent turtle island." Native American company Tuscarora Woodworks in New York state created a wooden fidget spinner, inspired by the Indigenous story of turtle island. (Tuscarora Woodworks/Facebook) Typically fidget spinners are made out of plastic, aluminum or stainless steel, making D’Alimonte’s design different.
After building a prototype, D’Alimonte posted a video of the spinner to the Tuscarora Woodworks Facebook page, and within an hour he had people asking to buy their own wooden fidget spinner.
"We’re getting requests for other designs, other clans, for example, a wolf fidget spinner or a beaver fidget spinner."
D’Alimonte said they have plans to design a spinner for each of the nine Haudenosaunee clans: bear, deer, snipe, beaver, wolf, heron, eel, eagle and, of course, turtle. Using wood in unexpected ways […]
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