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.  

Angela