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This dress was the "best dress" of a Lakota woman.

Plains people incorporated a creation story into the design of the yoke.

Northwest Coast Southwest Mississippi Valley Northeast Woodlands Plains

Introduction --
Dress Symbols
Dress Style
Legend of Grandmother Turtle
Video of Beading the Dress
Dress Label: Northern Plains region, Lakota, Woman's Dress, 19th century, Leather, cotton, copper & glass beads, Gift of James David & John David 74.64.5

This was the "best" dress of a Lakota woman, made from animal hide and decorated with glass beads. She might have worn it while she danced. Imagine how the beads would sparkle in the sunlight, and how the fringe would swish and sway. Bells sewn onto the lower part of the dress would tinkle with her movements. Although we may appreciate the dress’s beauty in this photograph or a case in a museum, it was made for dancing.

Pipe Bowl Elkhide Pipe Bag Shield Dress Bonnet Native Amercan History and Culture


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