April 19, 2017

Quillwork | Ancient Practices Kept Alive Today

Porcupine quillwork is an ancient Indigenous artistic practice. It is one of my favorite art forms. It predates European contact; and it predates the introduction of glass seed beads.

It is unique to Native North America: you will not find it anywhere else in the world, and, despite generations of massive change, it is still practiced today.

When you buy and wear porcupine quillwork, you are actively contributing to the continuation of this important and rare practice. 

We see it in some of the oldest and most sacred items preserved in prestigious museum collections throughout the world. But we also see it adorning powwow regalia today worn by champion dancers deep within Indian Country and beyond. And, just as importantly, we also see it in brilliant fashion-forward jewelry and accessories proudly worn by people of all backgrounds.

For our latest collection of quill bracelets by the Red Cloud family, we see both traditional designs and brilliant - almost electric - color combinations. For these bracelets, the artist plucks, cleans, and dyes the porcupine quills before even beginning the process of wrapping them. Each is made with precise rows, tight wraps, and a neat back for superior quality. It is hundreds, if not thousands, of years of artistry coming forth in new and amazing wearable art.

Click this link to view the latest quillwork and support this amazing practice. (NOTE: Please check back often as we continually add new pieces as they are made.)