Tuesday, April 9, 2019


What can I say ?  I LOVE big hats.  I love beading them.  I love wearing them! 

 This is the latest hat I just finished making.   I made this,  thinking about the Cowgirl I grew up across the street from in Oregon.   A real Cowgirl.   Born in 1896.  Used to ride in the old rodeos.   Grew up ranching in Eastern Oregon near LaGrande.   When they needed new horses,  they went out and rounded up wild ones and then broke them.   The stuff of todays legends.

I was thinking,  in her lifetime,  mankind went from transportation on horseback,  to rocket ships.   I even watched the moon landing and the first steps on the moon with her.   I was out playing when she called me inside to watch the TV.  She said,  you will see something important you will never forget.   I am always thankful for her insight.   She taught me a lot about life,  hard work and class when I most needed it as a child.   So,  this hat is done in her memory.  

The hat itself is a custom made hat,  made by Tyrone Morrison Watan, Northern Cheyenne.   I beaded it using 13/0 Charlotte cut beads,  24k gold Charlotte cut beads,  Sterling Silver Charlotte cut beads,  Antique Silver trade buttons,  Gun Metal Bullet studs,  and fine Italian Holographic leather.   

Cowgirls have been bustin' rockets a long time! 

And Cowgirls have been wearing big hats,  equally as long.   


Tuesday, February 5, 2019

Wishing for Spring - Dragonfly purse.

I just finished this little evening bag,  wishing for spring to come.   For so much of the country,  it's been pretty brutal and cold.  Here on the West coast,  it is no exception.   Right now its snowy and very cold.  Nothing like taking care of horses when all is frozen,  including water and gates!   So this purse is a reminder...Spring will be coming...right ?  

"Transporters of Dreams" 

 The bag was beaded using 13/0 cut beads,  24K Gold beads and Sterling Silver beads,  as well as antique Czech glass nailhead spots.  All done on fine Italian leather.


I think Dragonfly's are my wishing for spring theme - these I did two years ago also longing for warmer days.   

At least the snow and cold keeps me inside working hard. I have big plans this year...so stay tuned for more as they say.


Sunday, December 30, 2018

2018 - What a ride! Bodmer Era Buffalo Robe and a Happy New Year to you all!

2018 - What a crazy year!   Made some fun things,  met some great new clients,  and this last week is one I would rather forget!   But....I am excited to make some amazing new works in 2019.  

This is a Bodmer era robe I was commissioned to make, and is now in Switzerland.   The client wanted one that resembled this Bodmer painting.   I am glad he challenged me,  as I probably would not have made it on my own.   I am very pleased how it came out.  

Another look at it ( Of course on my floor as I didn't have time to get it professionally photographed before shipping it out ).    

And this was for Instagram....Nine of my works of 2018.  There were more of course...but how to choose which.   I hope to have plenty more to select from in 2019. 

Happy New Year,  and may the new year be a good one for all of you. 


Thursday, November 8, 2018

"MY LITTLE URBAN PONY" - Beaded Skateboard.

I just finished this beaded longboard for an upcoming show at The Stonington Gallery in Seattle Washington.   It was fun to play a little....things are so serious in the world,  that a bit of whimsy was needed!

All of the horses on this are either horses I own,  or have owned in the past.  Each and everyone of them has been special to me....They all taught me something or helped me at difficult periods in my life.   Horses are healers.    And of course...so are pony's!

This is Little Joe - who is on the bottom of the longboard ( Hence the name of the artwork ).  He is the latest to join the herd.  Never in my life did I think I would own a pony.  This one is special though.  Twice saved from death row....he is so kind, and gentle and loving.  Amazing the ability they have to forgive.  

Skateboards have kind of become the new horse for kids.  When I was growing up,  we rode horses like crazy daredevils......kind of how kids ride their skateboards.   So I thought a good parallel for the show. 

The longboard is 43 inch's long,  beaded on smoked brain tan hide,  using vintage and antique cut beads,  24k gold beads,  antique Navajo silver buttons,  and antique Czech glass nail head spots.   And the wheels are beaded too.  

Once I get better gallery pictures,  I will also post here.   

Enjoy, and remember...sometimes we MUST lighten up.   The world is far too serious at times. 


Thursday, September 20, 2018

Some New Works

I don't post as much on this Blog as I once did.  So I miss adding new works.  Been a busy summer though.  

This is a new horse collar I made for my horse Cappy.   It was made using re-cycled historic beadwork ( the main panel ) and I beaded new sides for it.  Hopefully,  this time he gets to keep it :-) 

I commissioned hat I finished last week.  Beaded using 13/0 cut beads,  24 K gold cut beads,  and antique Czech glass spots.  A variation of another had I made.  

I just finished this one today.   A beaded cuff,  using 13/0 cut beads,  24 k gold cut beads,  antique Navajo silver buttons,  and REAL Turquoise and Lapis beads.  And they are cut from stone,  not reconstituted dust.  About a size 14/0. 

The image is the stars in "Orions Belt".  

And....more new works to come!  Going to be a busy winter.   

Thursday, July 19, 2018


I have had this Blog site now for about 10 years.   I initially started it,  simply because it was a easy tool for me to refer potential clients a way to view my artwork without having to send off a ton of photos all the time.   Getting a actual web site was expensive and since I normally don't have stock for sale,  wasn't worth the cost at the time.    This seemed to do the job.  But it took a kind of journey on its own I wasn't ready for.   I had no idea the amounts of viewership around the world it would get - Close to a half a million hits.   Which is great....and not.   Many copy cat's out there with little concern or originality.   Had a few major companies steal design ideas.  And then there is Pintrest.   So many photos of my work circulated with no credit,  as I didn't watermark things 10 years ago.   People claiming my work as theirs, claiming it was made in China,  and even some claiming my horse as theirs!  Total insanity!   I ended up deleting about half of my original posts because of this.   Which was sad.....there was some good write ups in them.  But alas.....such is life.  

So now I am wondering if I continue posting here.  I have a Facebook site https://www.facebook.com/Angela-Swedberg-Bead-and-Quillwork-Artist-and-Native-Art-Restoration-112307472202407/,  and also now am on Instagram https://www.instagram.com/angelaswedberg/.  I am sure that is more than enough exposure.   Perhaps I will save this for any diatribe that I feel the need to expound on.   We shall see.    

So....a few photos of some recent work.   

This is a Plateau style dentalium shell breast plate necklace I just finished for a noted member of a well known Plateau family.   It will be great to see this worn around here at dances and events.   ( The dress is a old one from my collection ). 

It took sorting thru 15 pounds of shells to get these ones to make this.   All sanded on the ends as well.   The red beads are antique Italian red white hearts.  The blues are "Pony Trader" blue beads.   Pinch conch shells and silk ribbons.  The spacers are very heavy brain tan.  

The end dangles are Chinese coins and "Russian" blue faceted beads.   It has a great sound when worn.  Chinese coins show up often on historic items in the Columbia River area often.  

This is a beaded doctors bag in the collection of a very close friend of mine,  and I only now have photos of it.   I did this perhaps 20 years ago.   Beaded in 13/0 antique beads on brain tan leather.   He is NuuChaNulth,  and his children's mother was Lakota from the "Blue Horse" family.  This honors that connection.   

So...maybe I post again and maybe not ?   


Monday, April 16, 2018


Just finished this bag for a friend.  I am liking this new form and plan to make more of them. 

This is beaded using 13/0 Charlotte cut beads,  24K gold beads,  and yellow ochre painted brain tan hide.  

Back side of bag 

Beaded wrist strap ( also has hidden hooks for a shoulder chain if one so wants to use one ).   

Fun project.  Totally contemporary but looks "Old School".  

Saturday, March 17, 2018


I just finished making a pair of incised buffalo hide bags - One for a very dear friend,  and the other for me,  a kind of "Sister" bag.   

This is the one I made for my friend.  

And this is the one I made for myself.  I really LOVE making this style of rawhide work.  Getting the right materials is difficult,  because this is epidermal on buffalo rawhide.   Its difficult to do correctly. The hair has to be removed,  without losing the epidermal layer.  Its tricky.  And one needs to use late summer/early fall hides when the epidermal layer is dark ( like a suntan ).   

This is a pair of bags I recently made which are in the permanent collection of the Denver Art Museum.  They portray pictorial images of Plateau Women harvesting roots.   

This is another Plateau style bag on a set of horse gear I made as a commission.  A Western Plateau style work.   

This one I did a image of the great Nez Perce' leader Joseph.  It was in my show at the Maryhill Museum of art and is now in a private collection.  

Some images of historic examples.  They are rare.  

I believe this one may be Crow. 

As well this one.   They are very rare in collections today,  so I base the work I am doing on a handful of examples.  


Wednesday, February 21, 2018


Just finished making this beaded Rez Hat.   The artwork image is used by permission of the amazing Crow painter Kevin Red Star.   I have been a huge fan of his for many years - so this was a really fun project for me to do.  

I custom ordered the hat.  These "Sugar Loaf" style hats were and still are worn on the Crow Reservation.  You see them come out during Crow Fair.   They even have a special category in the parade for them.  

I did the beadwork using size 16/0 to about a size 22/0 antique micro beads.  I also used custom 2 facet cut beads and 24k gold plated cut beads.  

Think I will make another one soon.   Perhaps with a Cowgirl on it.  In my home turf ( Oregon ) women wore these too.  

Monday, January 1, 2018


And a couple of new hats to start the year off!  

I usually don't repeat designs,  but this was a special request.  

This is a otter turban I just finished for a good Nez Perce' friend.  It will be a honor to have him wear my work,  as he does good things for the community.  

But Little Joe had to model it ( He is tired today,  as we have a lot of fireworks in the area for New Years so didn't sleep much ) 

And Cappy had to also get in on the act. 

I am hoping for a good year,  with plenty of new artworks to come.  I wish all of you the same - a great and productive year. 


Wednesday, November 29, 2017

New Works and New Exhibit

Its been a busy fall for me.  I traveled to South Dakota to do some lectures and judge a art show at the University of South Dakota,  Vermillion.   And I just completed a art research fellowship at the Bill Holm Center,  Burke Museum,  University of Washington,  and lectured there as well.  I was very honored to have been asked by both esteemed institutions to participate in such capacities.   Life takes turns one never imagined.   Especially lecturing in the same room I attended my very first night class at the University of Washington 30 years ago,  with my very first instructor in the front row listening to me.   Full circle experience!  

I also have been working on new artworks too!  This piece will be in the December show at the Stonington Gallery in Seattle Washington.    The original artwork design is by my friend Greg Robinson,  Chinook.  It is used by permission.   I titled this "The Sun Loved The Moon So Much,  He Died Every Night Just To Let Her Breathe".   It is available for purchase here:  https://stoningtongallery.com/exhibit/december/

Beaded on brain tanned hide,  13/0 special double cut Charlotte Beads,  24k gold plated beads,  Sterling silver beads.  Dentallium shells,  Abalone Shell beads,  "Russian" style trade beads,  red ochre paint.  

And another full circle experience,  if the lecture at the Burke was not enough!  My artwork which is part of the permanent collection,  Denver Art Museum,  is now on display with one of my all time art heroes,  Deborah Butterfield!  Pinch me!  

The exhibit it is in,  until 2019,  is titled "Stampede" - Animals in art - https://denverartmuseum.org/exhibitions/stampede

Again,  not only am I on display with such a predominate and amazing artist,  but my work is also displayed with historic Plains artworks that I studied 30 years ago when I bought every book available on beadwork.  I still own my very worn copy of "Circles of the World" which the pipe bag and vest are in.    Amazing to think!  

I also just finished and mailed off this morning,  this new robe to a dear friend of mine!  Since her husband is a amazing photographer ( a director actually ) I will have better photos to show soon of it. I love doing works for friends.   The biggest honor to have I think.  

Its been a long time of many,  many years of working hard.  And almost overwhelming when it starts coming together like this.   I am humbled.