Leather and beads
x 9 1/16 in. ( x 23 cm)
North America, Native American
Leatherworking and beadworking
Gift of Mr. Jonathan Tibbet
Soft buckskin moccasins. Completely beaded uppers: blue and green striped bands on light blue background. Cloth appliqué under flaps.
glass beads and leather
Most examples of Blackfoot beadwork contain no more than three colors and express the Blackfoot fondness for blue, which was not an easily available indigenous pigment. For the Blackfoot, blue referred to the sky and symbolized the regenerative power of the cosmos. After about 1850, Blackfoot beadwork grew finer and more colorful, as a greater range of colored beads in small sizes became available. Color preferences tended toward light backgrounds with medium-value figures edged in darker colors. Light blue was a common substitute for the white backgrounds popular among other Plains beadworkers.
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