Dress and belt with awl case
Plateau cultures thrived in the hilly steppe region between the Cascades in Washington and Oregon and the Rockies in Idaho and Montana. Garments of superior craftsmanship incorporating trade goods, such as this example, expressed personal identity and a family’s high status. The woman who made this two-hide dress lavishly covered the torso and sleeves with black-and-white beadwork, which she framed with fringes embellished with glass beads, cowry shells, bone, and two highly prized elk canines. The dress is accompanied by its own belt and awl case: awls were among the tools that women used in the preparation of animal skins.
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