Monday, May 22, 2017

A'aninin Style Moccasins.

Just finished this pair of moccasins for a friends daughters graduation from collage.  So please don't copy or reproduce them without family consent.   Just not how things are done in Indian Country!  

She will be wearing these during her walk to get her diploma.   It is always a high honor to be asked to make items which will end up being family treasures :-)  And a well known historic family as well. 

I beaded these in 100% antique Italian seed beads on lightly smoked brain tan hide.   The soles are traditional rawhide soles.   

I put a tall wrap top on them,  which was worn more by women.  These are stuffed with polyfoam - so when worn they won't look like the wearer had "Cankles".   

And now for some well deserved R & R.   My horse needs me. 


Sunday, April 9, 2017


I just finished this pair of Southern Plains style tall top moccasins.  They have been a idea I have had rattling around in my brain for some time,  but I never seem to get the opportunity to do much open  work ( as most of my work is spoken for as I make it ).   

These were made using lightly smoked,  brain tanned hide which I had stored about 20 years ago.  I painted them with trade pigments,  and beaded them using 13/0 Czech cut beads and 24K Gold 13/0 cut beads.   The buttons are Czech glass buttons.  

The soles are rawhide,  and I constructed them like classic Southern Plains moccasins are made,  using a welt when I sewed on the sole.  

I had also purchased the glass buttons some time ago, and knew when I first saw them what I wanted to make with them.  

The backs of the moccasins.   I wanted these to feel "Happy" and whimsical.  And I find more and more my work taking a environmental theme,  and these and some other work which I will be making soon will deal with protecting the water.   Dragonfly's to me,  are all about water.  


Tuesday, February 7, 2017

YAKAMA DRESS RESTORATION ( And a few other Plateau dresses )

I finally took a little time to restore one of the old pieces from my collection,  that I never seem to be able to get to.   The saying the carpenter has no house,  or the cobbler is barefoot often rings so true in my life.  Always busy,  but seldom on my own items.  

This dress I bought out of California.  It had belonged to a woman who used it to show Appaloosa horses in the 1950's,  although they thought the dress was "Some California Tribe"  

I knew it was clearly a Yakama dress ( Outside chance of perhaps Nez Perce' )  but certainly a Plateau Dress,  probably made around 1900 to perhaps 1920 at the latest.  

It took years for me to finally find enough basket beads for the fringes,  as they have not been made or reproduced since this dress was made.   A hard to find bead,  especially in the quantities I needed.  

I am very happy how it came out,  and can't wait to wear it,  perhaps this summer.    Glad its back home in its original state and I promise it will be well loved and taken care of.  

Here is another dress,  I made from scratch.   All antique Italian beads,  and all those elk teeth are real.   I had at the time about 300 pair of them.   Wished I still had all those teeth!   I would love a real tooth dress for myself.  

Detail of the dress.  

Another Plateau style dress I made.  I used shells on this one.   And its a bit "Brigher" in the photograph than it appears in real life,  as I had lightly aged it.   

And anther dress I made from scratch,  which I own and wear.   A pony beaded style one,  made from brain tanned Mt. Sheep hides,  and the drops are elk tooth drops.   I think I used 3 or 4 antelope hides just for the fringe,  which I doubled and cut very thin like you see on the old dresses.  

Glad this project is done.  Now onto new works.