Jocelyn Ormerod learned beading from her mother. Photo supplied by Jocelyn Ormerod

Using beading to teach 2SLGBTQIA+ history

Students gather at U of S to show their colours

By Randi LaRocque

The University of Saskatchewan (U of S) celebrated 2SLGBTQIA+ History Month with a beading circle. About a dozen beaders gathered in the G3 Murray Library to create rainbow lapel pins on Oct. 12.

“I decided to do rainbows because they’re a great way to be inclusive,” said Jocelyn Ormerod, a two-spirit Métis beadwork artist and U of S alumna who organized the event.  

October was named 2SLGBTQIA+ History Month in 1994.

“I thought the rainbow was nice because it’s one of those things you can wear to show who you are and to represent without being so out about it,” said Ormerod. 

“It’s something everyone can partake in, whether you’re queer, whether you’re an ally.”


The pin, although small, is quite significant because it showcases her Indigenous identity through the beading and her two-spirit side through the rainbow pin. The two vital parts of her identity Ormerod loves and proudly shows off to the world.

“It’s something everybody can partake in, whether you’re queer, whether you’re an ally,” she said. “It’s something you can wear and feel comfortable wearing and expressing yourself with.”

The attendees spent two hours learning new knowledge in a safe space.

“I wanted to partake in the workshop because I’ve been engaged in pride initiatives at the University of Saskatchewan for some time,” said Ormerod.

She not only works at the U of S but is also a graduate student.

“It was a great way to give back,” Ormerod said, about why she did the workshop.

It was clear Ormerod enjoyed what she did by the care and attention that she gave to each student.

“It’s something that I always enjoyed seeing other people do,” said Ormerod. 

She learned beading from her mom. Ormerod’s mom first showed her how to do a single-needle embroidery hoop and from then on she was hooked.

She said she was very excited to be able to host such an event for those on the U of S campus and for residents of Saskatoon. Ormerod supplied everything for the workshop, down to the beads everyone used. 

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