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Old 06-21-2006, 11:26 AM   #1
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Cherokee regalia questions

Greetings!

I have only just recently traced my Cherokee ancestry (maternal great grandfather's parents were born in Alabama) and begun to investigate Cherokee history and tradition. I am in Northern Michigan and my Teachers here are Odawa.

It is time for me to have my first regalia, and I want to honor my Cherokee ancestors, of course. I'm looking for details about women's traditional cloth regalia, including the folding of the shawl, traditional beading or decoration, hair and feather arrangements and belts, bags, pouches. Pretty much everything.

Any help would be very much appreciated!

Ann
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Old 06-23-2006, 07:23 AM   #2
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it'll all depend on which nation you are from?
as now the eastern have a newer style - old syle wear from 1700's(no beadwork)
and the western have the tear dress
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Old 06-23-2006, 10:02 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Okwataga
it'll all depend on which nation you are from?
as now the eastern have a newer style - old syle wear from 1700's(no beadwork)
and the western have the tear dress
Thank you for responding, Okwataga!

From the stories told to me by my mother, told to her by her grandfather, we are connected to what is now the Echota Cherokee. I believe that would be Eastern?

Please forgive my ignorance. I've only just begun this journey.

Ann
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Old 06-23-2006, 02:45 PM   #4
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right now the only way I know of for someone to get directions for the old style dress is to contact the Museum
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Old 06-23-2006, 03:25 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Okwataga
right now the only way I know of for someone to get directions for the old style dress is to contact the Museum
Yes, I found the thread in which you were talking about the Eastern Cherokee choosing an old style dress, and that the pattern would be available only to enrolled members. I would not be able to be enrolled. I've chosen to dance a T dress, and am wondering what should be added to honor my Cherokee ancestors.

Thank you for taking the time!

Ann
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Old 06-23-2006, 03:26 PM   #6
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Last edited by 1stspringflower; 06-23-2006 at 03:36 PM..
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Old 06-24-2006, 04:00 PM   #7
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Why on earth would you choose a T dress, that's not tradish! Do you mean a tear dress?
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Old 06-24-2006, 04:17 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by paintedsun22
Why on earth would you choose a T dress, that's not tradish! Do you mean a tear dress?

She probably doesn't know the difference.

I"m Northern....Oglala Lakota actually. Our cloth dress are cut T shaped. A TEAR dress is something different all together.

Make sure you find out all the MINUTE details of everything you make or buy or trade for, since it sounds like you want to do things right. Most people will smile and gently correct you if you get something wrong, but there are those out there who will literally blast you and make you feel awful. It's not right, but sometimes they are passionate about it. Be very specific.....
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Old 06-25-2006, 12:24 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lakota Wiyan
She probably doesn't know the difference.

I"m Northern....Oglala Lakota actually. Our cloth dress are cut T shaped. A TEAR dress is something different all together.

Make sure you find out all the MINUTE details of everything you make or buy or trade for, since it sounds like you want to do things right. Most people will smile and gently correct you if you get something wrong, but there are those out there who will literally blast you and make you feel awful. It's not right, but sometimes they are passionate about it. Be very specific.....
Thank you SO much for your kind words! I have found so many who are willing to tell me that what I am thinking is wrong, but so few who are willing to tell me what is right. I am honored that you recognize my sincerity in desiring to respect the tradition of my ancestors.

I know that there are those who would steal what is not theirs, and that there is no way for me to convince someone here that I am sincere. I don't have the privilege of the teachings of my grandmothers. They had to hide their wisdom, and teach their children to hide it. I bless my great grandfather every day for sharing what he did with my mother, just enough to allow me to find him.

So, I ask questions, and hope that they are taken with the respect in which they are asked. I've done some research, and I know what a tear dress is, but I also have found several folks who say that the tear dress is a Western tradition, and my ancestors were Eastern.

I thought the dress that I've chosen was a T dress, as you've described, but now that I have more information I know it isn't. It's really a pretty generic pattern, not specific to any nation. Is it better to dance in a less specific dress, intending to follow tradition as I learn, or to keep from dancing until I know that I've got it right?

The other challenge that I face is that I have no contact with those who know Eastern Cherokee tradition here in Northern Michigan. My Odawa teachers are generous, and willing to help. They've also invited me to dance in Odawa traditional regalia. I appreciate that, and have been gifted many Odawa things that I will dance with, but I worked so hard to find my Cherokee ancestors, and I am the only one of my great grandfather's line that I know of who honors this heritage. I want to honor my ancestors in the circle.

Thank you again for your kind words. And to all of you for taking the time to read my questions and respond.

Ann
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Old 06-26-2006, 03:32 PM   #10
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There is not much in the way to honor your Cherokee roots in a pow wow circle.
maybe in your beadwork, or design on your dress.
we do not have certain items that are strictly Cherokee per se i.e like the Crow style dress, you know them Girls are Crow
If the Odawa's are bringing you into the circle - I would honor them first and be honored that they are doing this....then as the year and time goes by you add a bit of Cherokee and change up your regalia a piece at a time as you get comfortable dancing...
just my thoughts
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Old 06-26-2006, 06:53 PM   #11
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I agree that you should dress Odawa since that is what you have been taught so far, and to honor your teacher's gift. Make sure you do not mix tribal styles, though. Yes, it is okay to wear a tear dress even though you are eastern band, we're all Cherokee. PM me if you want more information on specific tribal stuff, but I would suggest asking around at powwows and learning form Cherokee elders. That is your best bet for the most correct information,that applies to your specific situation.
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Old 06-27-2006, 02:49 AM   #12
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Okwataga and Paintedsun22 thank you both so much for your answers! It is good to know that you think that it would be ok to honor my Odawa teachers by dancing in their tradition. What is interesting is that we know that my great-grandfather spent months at a time with a tribe in Ontario when he was living in New York. They were most likely Odawa or Ojibwe, so I believe that I honor his teachers as well.

In the mean time, I will be talking with others at Pow Wow, as well as here, and learning all that I can so that one day I can honor my Cherokee ancestors properly in the circle as well. I especially appreciate your clarifying that there is not anything as specific as the Crow, Okwataga. They definitely have a distinct style.

You have been very generous, and have helped me reach a peace about this decision. Thank you.

Ann
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Old 08-31-2006, 05:48 PM   #13
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Cherokee clothes

The subject of women's clothes for Cherokee is a tough one. Here in OKlahoma we have the tear dress, which is considered "official", with diamond cutwork on it. Out in NC they used to wear a similar dress but with cut and fold triangles on it. Now, however, people are starting to go more to the 1700's style out east, which looks alot like 6 nations clothes, an over blouse or jacket, leggings and a wraparound skirt. If all you're wanting to do is add a cherokee touch to what you're doing rather than go all out cherokee, you might look at pucker toe center seam mocs, fingerwoven belt, beadwork style is floral or abstract, taken from our old pottery designs. Hope this helps. BTW, I'd like to see a girl enter Miss Cherokee in one of those 1700's dresses rather than a tear dress and see what happens!
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Old 09-01-2006, 08:53 AM   #14
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well that is exactly what the girls arre to be wearing come this Fall Festival...
the older style look will be what the new Miss Cherokee will be wearing for her appearances
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Old 09-01-2006, 04:16 PM   #15
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skasdiyu!

That's awesome! I want a girl to do that here in OKlahoma! I tried to talk my cousin into doing it this year, but she wimped out on me! I like the look of those older clothes better!
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Old 09-05-2006, 05:16 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 1stspringflower
Greetings!

I have only just recently traced my Cherokee ancestry (maternal great grandfather's parents were born in Alabama) and begun to investigate Cherokee history and tradition. I am in Northern Michigan and my Teachers here are Odawa.

It is time for me to have my first regalia, and I want to honor my Cherokee ancestors, of course. I'm looking for details about women's traditional cloth regalia, including the folding of the shawl, traditional beading or decoration, hair and feather arrangements and belts, bags, pouches. Pretty much everything.

Any help would be very much appreciated!

Ann

Hey, who are your Odawa teachers? My father is Odawa. Most Cherokee's I know, threw my husband, just dance in either a Cherokee Tear Dress, or Southern Cloth.

However I like what someone said above about going back a little bit with the blouse and stuff. I would like to see that come about wide spread with Cherokee people. I am actually working on his Bag, mocs and stuff. I just finished his robe/jacket now. More to come, I've got to put the pics up of the tear dress, his turban, gorget, and stuff....

http://www.freewebs.com/areztouch/so...ernregalia.htm
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Old 09-25-2006, 11:04 PM   #17
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Regalia

Hi, I am dancing and have just purchased tradition EasteCherokee Regalia from Runnuing Bears Den in Cherokee North Carolina. I have told them my heritage simply comes from the stories told me from my Great Aunt but that I would like to honor those stories when I dance. Their workmanship is excellent and if you come to them with respect they will tell you truth and I feel you would be very happy with the dress. I think their price is around 150 dollars...I say this as many "boast " of heritage. Not of course saying you do, just passing an observance. Blessings
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