Saturday, August 25, 2007

What to wear to a Pow Wow... seen at the SWAIA 2007 Santa Fe Indian Market Native American clothing competition.

This is one of the highlights of Indian Market, taking place on Sunday morning, the last day of
the two-day event. Tribal members sign up to compete in the clothing and regalia of their tribes. They are judged by a panel of "experts" for completeness, authenticity, attractiveness and ingenuity.

Here are some photographs of the event, with commentary were helpful. The first of the photos relate to the youth divisions. So precious...

They were followed by the young girls as shown below Here we have the front and back views of a particularly complex young woman's outfit

Here the MC points to a "cactus kicker" toes on the moccasins of a young woman, explaining that were included in order to allow the wearer to kick away a particular ball-shaped desert cactus with toxic needles.
Here come the outfits of the more mature women. The outfit on the far left includes rows of tin cones that rattle when the wearer dances. Next to her is a complex outfit that is described by the wearer in the video that precedes this posting. In the center, is a woman whose outfit includes - on her right hand shoulder - a group of patches of military units stationed in Afghanistan and Iraq. In her description, which we failed to record, she speaks of a trip to Iraq to visit the troops and how they reacted with gratitude for her desire to display unit their insignias and her support for the troops. To paraphrase, she said the only thing they asked was not to be forgotten.
Here is a row of the male contestants in full regalia. Missing from this photo, but apparent in the one that follows is one Cherokee who competed dressed in the uniform of a Cherokee brave who fought for the Confederacy in the Civil War.And, of course, every competition must have a "Best of Show" award. Here they are.

We hope you enjoyed this brief journey into the colorful and historic world of native American Indian clothing. Eventually, we will post additional photos to our web sites at TribalWorks, ZuniLink, Native-JewelryLink and Native-PotteryLink. Thank you. William
Ernest Waites and Susanne Waites.