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Woman’s Side-Fold Dress

Probably Lakota or Cheyenne

Not on view

A bison hide serves as the foundation for this side-fold dress, a rare and early type of garment produced by Plains women. The artist used porcupine and bird quills to create traditional geometric designs. To make the dress, she folded the hide in half, turned down the yoke, and sewed up the left side. As a finishing touch, she added costly materials obtained through trade with Europeans—glass beads from Venice, brass buttons from England, and cowrie shells from the Pacific Ocean.

Woman’s Side-Fold Dress, Native-tanned leather, porcupine and bird quills, brass buttons, cowrie shells, glass beads, metal cones, horsehair, plant fiber, woven cotton tape, wool cloth, Probably Lakota or Cheyenne

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