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Antique Beadwork

Native American Beadwork

Antique Native American beadwork may be found in all Native American culture, but never had it evolved as an art form in such a way as it did in the Plains of Native America. Native Americans made their own beads from native materials for centuries, but the painstaking process made beads scarce and hard to come by. With the introduction of trade sources through the French via Canada came a surplus of glass beads that soon came to ornament nearly every functional item of the Plains culture literally from head to toe. Sewn with sinew thread on hand-tanned hides, elaborate and colorful designs began to evolve, the style and symbolism of which became an important means of tribal identity and intertribal trade. The organic nature of the hides and the utilitarian use to which they were put means few samples prior to the 1930’s survive making those pieces still existing rare indeed.

Antique Beadwork

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  1. A'aninin Beaded Hide War Shirt

    A'aninin Beaded Hide War Shirt

    $85,000.00
    E681 - A'aninin Beaded War Shirt

  2. Antique Apache Beaded Hide Mens Moccasins

    Antique Apache Beaded Hide Mens Moccasins

    $3,250.00
    C761 - Antique Apache Beaded Hide Mens Moccasins CA 1870

  3. Antique Apache Beaded Tab Toe Moccasins

    Antique Apache Beaded Tab Toe Moccasins

    $10,000.00
    C722 - Antique Apache Tab Toe Moccasins Ca 1900s

  4. Antique Apache Pigment Paint Moccasins

    Antique Apache Pigment Paint Moccasins

    $1,650.00
    C745-Circa 1875-1880

  5. Antique Beaded Apache Men's Shirt

    Antique Beaded Apache Men's Shirt

    $27,500.00
    C707 - Apache Men's Shirt CA: 1850

  6. Antique Cheyenne Beaded Moccasins

    Antique Cheyenne Beaded Moccasins

    $1,800.00
    C746-Ca Early 1900's

  7. Antique Comanche child's Beaded Hide

    Antique Comanche child's Beaded Hide

    $550.00
    C754 - Comanche Beaded Moccasins CA 1910

  8. Antique Crow Saddle Blanket

    Antique Crow Saddle Blanket

    $2,250.00
    C756 - Antique Crow Beaded Saddle Blanket

  9. Antique Handmade Sioux Beaded Hide Moccasins

    Antique Handmade Sioux Beaded Hide Moccasins

    $3,000.00
    C734 - Antique Handmade Sioux Beaded Moccasins Circa Early 20th Century

  10. Antique Handmade Southern Plains Beaded Hide Gauntlets

    Antique Handmade Southern Plains Beaded Hide Gauntlets

    $1,300.00
    C727 - Handmade Southern Plains Beaded Hide Gauntlets.

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Early designs in Plains beadwork were usually simple stripes and geometrics, the colors and designs of which were prescribed by ceremonial stricture. Later, especially after the 1870s, the designs began to change and become more complex and elaborate, although the old ceremonial designs were still created. The artistry and excellence in Native American bead work was considered a matter of pride for the individual artist. Women made all the clothing and beadwork for their families with the exception of weaponry and the accoutrements of war, which were the men’s domain. Although few items remain, those that do exemplify this pride and care in beauty, artistry, and workmanship.