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  • Regalia Advice

    I apologize ahead of time, because this will take a bit of explaining before I can get to my actual question. I'm involved in my local Order of the Arrow lodge through Boy Scouts. I was on their dance team as a Fancy Dancer as a youth, and have recently been asked to return as an advisor for the team. The team has decided that they want to focus on the Northern Traditional style, and asked for my help with the dance and regalia. I don't have much of a problem with teaching dance or regalia construction. My problem is figuring out what regalia to construct. I have looked through books and through these forums extensively, but still have a few questions.

    The idea for this team is to give the kids a simple, inexpensive basis with which to begin. We don't want to discourage the kids by telling them that they can't start to dance until they've spent a ton of money and hours and hours of labor on their regalia, but we still want to encourage them to respect the traditions rather than make it however they want. Some of these examples are simple, such as the apron: start with cloth and ribbon, add some beadwork, medicine wheels, etc. as they learn how, and eventually work their way up to buckskin and beadwork as they continue to build their regalia. Others don't seem so simple, such as the kneebands, armbands, and cuffs. What kinds of options can I suggest for these items? Can they use fingerweaving for the armbands and kneebands, or does that not fit the Northern Traditional style? What about inkle weaving? And what about the cuffs? Is there any option beside a fully beaded set?

    Any help and advice is greatly appreciated. Thanks.

  • #2
    Originally posted by BSABeads View Post
    I apologize ahead of time, because this will take a bit of explaining before I can get to my actual question. I'm involved in my local Order of the Arrow lodge through Boy Scouts. I was on their dance team as a Fancy Dancer as a youth, and have recently been asked to return as an advisor for the team. The team has decided that they want to focus on the Northern Traditional style, and asked for my help with the dance and regalia. I don't have much of a problem with teaching dance or regalia construction. My problem is figuring out what regalia to construct. I have looked through books and through these forums extensively, but still have a few questions.

    The idea for this team is to give the kids a simple, inexpensive basis with which to begin. We don't want to discourage the kids by telling them that they can't start to dance until they've spent a ton of money and hours and hours of labor on their regalia, but we still want to encourage them to respect the traditions rather than make it however they want. Some of these examples are simple, such as the apron: start with cloth and ribbon, add some beadwork, medicine wheels, etc. as they learn how, and eventually work their way up to buckskin and beadwork as they continue to build their regalia. Others don't seem so simple, such as the kneebands, armbands, and cuffs. What kinds of options can I suggest for these items? Can they use fingerweaving for the armbands and kneebands, or does that not fit the Northern Traditional style? What about inkle weaving? And what about the cuffs? Is there any option beside a fully beaded set?

    Any help and advice is greatly appreciated. Thanks.
    sorry but we see the exploitation that rules the minds of the boy scouts. you won't get any help from any northern plains tribal member. you will get help from private messages from wannabees but they will tell you not reveal their identity. it would be nice if the boy scouts would just disappear and vanish without a trace but since you white folk are too numerous, it won't happen. i wish you bad luck in your search, hoka hey!

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    • #3
      Well I'm sorry you feel that way. I am well aware of the attitudes of many Scouts who don't take it seriously. But as you said, the Boy Scouts are not going to just disappear. So wouldn't it be better for everyone if you were more helpful to people like me who respectfully ask for help, rather than just doing what they want without regard for authenticity or respect? If it's going to be done either way, why not help make sure it's done right? Otherwise you just propogate the "wannabes" and the "exploitation" you are so concerned about. I'm not asking how to make "fake" regalia, I'm just asking for a starting point from which to build. I'm not asking how to make all your regalia from stuff you find at Wal-Mart, just how you can leave yourself open for options as you learn more.

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      • #4
        Originally posted by BSABeads View Post
        Well I'm sorry you feel that way. I am well aware of the attitudes of many Scouts who don't take it seriously. But as you said, the Boy Scouts are not going to just disappear. So wouldn't it be better for everyone if you were more helpful to people like me who respectfully ask for help, rather than just doing what they want without regard for authenticity or respect? If it's going to be done either way, why not help make sure it's done right? Otherwise you just propogate the "wannabes" and the "exploitation" you are so concerned about. I'm not asking how to make "fake" regalia, I'm just asking for a starting point from which to build. I'm not asking how to make all your regalia from stuff you find at Wal-Mart, just how you can leave yourself open for options as you learn more.
        Whoa there cowboy! Don't be bashing Wal-mart. You talking bout sacred grounds!!!


        Why must I feel like that..why must I chase the cat?


        "When I was young man I did some dumb things and the elders would talk to me. Sometimes I listened. Time went by and as I looked around...I was the elder".

        Mr. Rossie Freeman

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        • #5
          Originally posted by Joe's Dad View Post
          Whoa there cowboy! Don't be bashing Wal-mart. You talking bout sacred grounds!!!
          Your too funny JD lol
          I got a fevah! And the only cure is more cowbell!!!

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          • #6
            Originally posted by Joe's Dad View Post
            Whoa there cowboy! Don't be bashing Wal-mart. You talking bout sacred grounds!!!

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            • #7
              Originally posted by BSABeads View Post
              Well I'm sorry you feel that way. I am well aware of the attitudes of many Scouts who don't take it seriously. But as you said, the Boy Scouts are not going to just disappear. So wouldn't it be better for everyone if you were more helpful to people like me who respectfully ask for help, rather than just doing what they want without regard for authenticity or respect? If it's going to be done either way, why not help make sure it's done right? Otherwise you just propogate the "wannabes" and the "exploitation" you are so concerned about. I'm not asking how to make "fake" regalia, I'm just asking for a starting point from which to build. I'm not asking how to make all your regalia from stuff you find at Wal-Mart, just how you can leave yourself open for options as you learn more.

              really now? i think custer said the same thing and look what happened? you both have the mindset of thievery, first you take our black hills and now you want our culture.
              Last edited by they_drag_him; 09-14-2008, 01:25 AM.

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              • #8
                Are you or your boyscouts ndn? If not, then I'd kindly suggest that you concentrate on learning & cultivating your own culture.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by BSABeads View Post
                  We don't want to discourage the kids by telling them that they can't start to dance until they've spent a ton of money and hours and hours of labor on their regalia, but we still want to encourage them to respect the traditions rather than make it however they want.
                  Hey man, I'm in a similar enough situation, except I'm Ojibwe and teach Ojibwe kids. It's more similar that you might think, because the modern styles are nothing like our actual traditional regalia, so I'm teaching the end result of someone else's culture to my kids too.

                  The one thing I decided early on is that I would help them however I could, but if they weren't willing to put the time and effort in, then forget it - this guy isn't ready to dance. I know you don't want to discourage anyone, but if you do it right, they discourage themselves and it leaves you free to concentrate your time and resources on the guys who want it.

                  Remember, not everyone gets to be a traditional dancer, even today.

                  ps: beaded cuffs look the best, and they really aren't that expensive or difficult to make.
                  Last edited by sookout sh'nob; 09-14-2008, 03:25 PM. Reason: ps
                  Mii iw keyaa ezhi-ditibiseyaan

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                  • #10
                    this boy scout will not come back. why? because, he came and took what he wanted, i know that some members of pws.com have already given him everything that he demanded.

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by BSABeads View Post
                      If it's going to be done either way, why not help make sure it's done right?
                      I'm not a man's northern traditional dance nor a man even. But that's a really arrogant statement. These are our dances, not yours to take whether we like it or not.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by BSABeads View Post
                        Well I'm sorry you feel that way. I am well aware of the attitudes of many Scouts who don't take it seriously. But as you said, the Boy Scouts are not going to just disappear. So wouldn't it be better for everyone if you were more helpful to people like me who respectfully ask for help, rather than just doing what they want without regard for authenticity or respect? If it's going to be done either way, why not help make sure it's done right? Otherwise you just propogate the "wannabes" and the "exploitation" you are so concerned about. I'm not asking how to make "fake" regalia, I'm just asking for a starting point from which to build. I'm not asking how to make all your regalia from stuff you find at Wal-Mart, just how you can leave yourself open for options as you learn more.
                        Wow I just had to register to comment on this.

                        So is this your idea of respect???????

                        1. if you want a good idea of what a Northern Traditional dancer looks like... go to a few pow-wows and not Order of the Arrow pow wows.

                        2. I have no problem with Boy Scouts fancy dancing but Traditional dancing is something else. where are you going to get the feathers?????

                        3. You mentioned the bad rap that Boy Scouts get in the Native communities. Well maybe it has been the years of "We are going to do it, you can help us or not but we do not care what you say we have a "right" to your culture" That is what you just said to us.

                        4. If you had any real respect for us you would discourage your members from going "traditional", you would understand why going traditional is inappropriate, and if you had any respect for us you would say "maybe it is not a good thing" when we tell you "You are not doing a good thing".

                        It appears that you will do what the Boy Scouts have always done... play Indian and expect us to say thanks and kiss your butts.

                        Why not be different, why not be one of the very few Boy Scouts that is respectful and understand that traditional dancing is for Native people and not Boy Scouts. Be different and respectful of our culture and traditions.... don't mock it.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by BSABeads View Post
                          If it's going to be done either way, why not help make sure it's done right?
                          Wow...another word comes to mind when I read this sentence...rape...I know that sounds harsh, but good grief. What a freakin' ego!!! When I think of all the traditional dancers I know - and that's a lot of people - I think of the humble nature of each of them and the traditional teachings they carry with them. How can anything be done "right" if you can't even humble yourself to learn in a good way?
                          I think everyone on this rez is addicted to Harry Potter...lol...

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by eap7 View Post
                            I'm not a man's northern traditional dance nor a man even. But that's a really arrogant statement. These are our dances, not yours to take whether we like it or not.
                            I agree, that was diffentely an arrogant statment. Let's give him hell. LOL
                            Dance hard like there is no tomrrow. Hoka!

                            Being Native American isn't JUST about blood. It is a Spiritual way of life.


                            "Tell me and I will listen, Show me and I will understand, Take me in and I will learn." -A Lakota proverb

                            “We need to start standing up to people who tell us ‘no,’ that we can’t do things in the way of our culture.” -Aloysius Dreaming Bear

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                            • #15
                              Ya know...I'm posting again...that guy's post just made me mad...

                              Let's take all of the racial and tribal affiliation talk out of the debate for a second...let's say the guy who made that statement wasn't a Boy Scout, but a member of a tribe...ok...that said...

                              How do you think the rest of us would be viewed if we went up to another tribe and made that comment? For instance, if I went up to someone from the Haudesaunee (forgive my spelling please) confederacy and said, "Well, I'm going to do Smoke Dance songs whether you like it or not so it's only in your best interest to teach me." WOW!!

                              WTH??? I don't know why that post got under my skin so bad, but good grief.
                              I think everyone on this rez is addicted to Harry Potter...lol...

                              Comment

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