Native American Beaded Eagles Handbag
Maria Godines, an artist from the Warm Springs Reservation in Oregon, has created a buckskin handbag featuring a beaded design of the heads of two bald eagles facing each other. The bald eagle is an important figure in traditional Northwest Native American art, often carved and painted on pieces made from wood. Maria has chosen a stunning color combination for her beaded eagle design. She constructed the bag, including the handle, fringe, and clasp, with very supple elk buckskin. Maria learned the technique of flat beadworking from her sister Joannie Selam. For this bag, Maria used a canvas-type material for her beadwork. She then stitched the beaded hourglass-shaped piece onto the buckskin purse front. Maria used a machine for her initial bag construction but did much of the stitching by hand. She used dark rust corduroy fabric for the bag’s lining. The button clasp, handle attachments, and decorative feather sew-ons are metal. The bag measures 7 ¾ in. wide and 6 in. tall not counting the fringe.
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