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  • Sell your outfit?

    Some outfits have been handed down from a family member. Others have been value beyond dollars because of personal reasons. Others like mine, have been specifically made for the dancer.


    What would you do if a collector, museum or powwow dancer offered to buy your outfit?

    What is a going rate to sell complete outfits in good condition nowadays? What would a complete men's fancy, straight, traditional, grass, buckskin, cloth, jingle and fancy shawl outfit go for (minus eagle feather)?

    What would you sell your complete outfit for?

    Would you ever even consider selling it?
    Last edited by WhoMe; 07-13-2008, 08:16 PM.
    Powwows will continue to evolve in many directions. It is inevitable.

  • #2
    i have maded thing to sell even given some of my older things away but i don't think i could ever sell any or part of my outfit

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    • #3
      Going Rate

      My wife and I have made outfits for folks and here are sort of the base rates I use, and they seem to match up with what I have seen vendors selling stuff for-
      Basic men's traditional usually at least $500, and that's without a lot of bead work, no roach, and a turkey bustle.
      Basic straightdance at least $700, and that is with simple ribbon work and no roach.
      Girl's fancy- $250-300 with applique and no beadwork.
      Women's Northern Cloth- $300 or so depending on the beadwork.
      And all of these depend on materials and the size of the person (I am a big boy and I know an outfit for me is gonna use an extra coupla yards of fabric).
      Once you add on beadwork, roaches, and so forth you are easily looking at over a thousand dollars just to have a simple outfit.
      I figured it up a couple of months ago, and my regalia is worth more than my car- and probably more than the total of all the cars I have ever owned.
      Now the job side of me has to speak up and say if you can afford it, get insurance just on your outfits- homeowners or renter's insurance may not cover the cost of replacement.
      As for museums and so forth, I have heard that when the Field Museum in Chicago wanted to add to their collection a few decades back they actually commissioned folks to make outfits just for display (p.s. if anyone from the Field is reading this it is time to redo your display).
      As for my personal regalia, I could never sell it. Too much personal stuff in there.

      Comment


      • #4
        Legal,

        I hear ya about never selling your outfit.

        I have seen some buckskins sold to a museum from some champion dancers. I have no idea what they were sold for. But these buckskins were well known on the powwow trail.

        I have been asked by a very prestigous museum overseas to sell my outfit. It also has great value to me. But I know this outfit would have another life and my relatives would be able to see it long after I'm gone.

        This thread was created to get an idea of what the outfit is actually worth. So thank you for your input.

        Another reason I posted is I have a proposal for a powwow exhibit that I have been sitting on. In this proposal I would commission outfits to be made representing the 4 major male and female powwow categories.

        When the time presents itself, I will submit this proposal.
        Powwows will continue to evolve in many directions. It is inevitable.

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        • #5
          well i have heard of people selling their ex's regalia .... just to get back at em (for whatever) ....

          i know of one who sold the regalia she spent years making for the father of her oldest children ... only to find out he was having an affair with her cousin (their sitter). so she sold it to a museum for $1500. it took the new wife YEARS to make him a new one LOL ... and it wasnt half as nice as the old one LOL
          Watch your broken dreams...
          Dance in and out of the beams of a neon moon

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          • #6
            Originally posted by WhoMe View Post
            Legal,

            I hear ya about never selling your outfit.

            I have seen some buckskins sold to a museum from some champion dancers. I have no idea what they were sold for. But these buckskins were well known on the powwow trail.

            I have been asked by a very prestigous museum overseas to sell my outfit. It also has great value to me. But I know this outfit would have another life and my relatives would be able to see it long after I'm gone.

            This thread was created to get an idea of what the outfit is actually worth. So thank you for your input.

            Another reason I posted is I have a proposal for a powwow exhibit that I have been sitting on. In this proposal I would commission outfits to be made representing the 4 major male and female powwow categories.

            When the time presents itself, I will submit this proposal.
            From various people I've talked too prices can vary greatly do to the amount of beadwork, detail of applique, using real bones/furs/beads vs the imitations and even the type rhinestones used. These are prices I've heard for full outfits head to toe, excluding roaches though.

            Straight dance $700 - $1800
            Grass dance $800 - $2000
            Traditional $1200 - $2500
            Fancy $1200 - $2500
            Buckskin - Southern $1200 - $2000
            Buckskin - Northern $1800 - $3500
            Southern Cloth $200 - $700
            Fancy Shawl $1000 - $3000
            Jingle Dress $400 - $1500
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            • #7
              I know of a lot of people that sell their outfits when they get new outfits or for kids, when they outgrow them. I personally don't see how they can do that....*L

              I take so much time beading my dresses, that it would be heartbreaking to not have them or see my granddaughter wear them someday. I can only bead on my projects after work and on weekends, so when I finally get something finished, it's not going anywhere...lol.

              I do have a friend that does a lot of beading, her and her sisters all get together and can whip up a dress in no time. I wish I had that kind of help, but I don't.

              Comment


              • #8
                Man,

                I am really undercharging!! LOL. But most of my work is for family or friends *S*. I guess I have to quit being so dang nice and be a mean ole bat and charge up da ying yang....LOL. I dunno, don't really have it mah heart to do that. Creator gave me a gift and it wasn't to overcharge mah people.... :D.

                Well looks like i'll have to print this list so peeps can see the ongoing rates nowadays...LOL.

                Anyways, I was always taught to keep those regalia's dancing. All my son's old stuff is going to his uncles's son's in Canada, just to keep it dancing. I once sold one of his unused outfits for a low price but I haven't seen the little one dancing. It's sad because we told the family to keep it dancing. *S*

                Personally, i'd give it away to someone who could use it. Even just recently, my son received a fully beaded grass outfit etc because the person outgrew it. What comes around goes around.... you really have to believe it.
                You have crossed my path, You will never be forgotten......


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                • #9
                  Originally posted by Nezbah View Post
                  Anyways, I was always taught to keep those regalia's dancing. All my son's old stuff is going to his uncles's son's in Canada, just to keep it dancing. I once sold one of his unused outfits for a low price but I haven't seen the little one dancing. It's sad because we told the family to keep it dancing. *S*

                  Personally, i'd give it away to someone who could use it. Even just recently, my son received a fully beaded grass outfit etc because the person outgrew it. What comes around goes around.... you really have to believe it.

                  Nezbah,

                  I really believe in what comes around goes around....

                  Many years back, I was travelling in the Northern Plains and stayed with a family in Browning. During dinner it was mentioned that their son wanted to fancy dance. As we were leaving, I asked the son to come to the car. I gave him my hackle bustle to get him started. We drove away knowing that this bustle would continue to dance though this young dancer.

                  Recently, a friend from Montana came to visit my home. After dinner she said her daughters have outgrown their beadwork. She said she made their beadwork with the intention that it would always dance. When she left, she told us she would send this beadwork to my two little daughters so that the beadwork could continue dancing.

                  I know that this lady and her family are all perfectionists in their dance outfits. So I am looking forward to her fulfilling her promise!
                  Last edited by WhoMe; 07-15-2008, 08:51 PM.
                  Powwows will continue to evolve in many directions. It is inevitable.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by ndnsooner View Post
                    Straight dance $700 - $1800
                    Grass dance $800 - $2000
                    Traditional $1200 - $2500
                    Fancy $1200 - $2500
                    Buckskin - Southern $1200 - $2000
                    Buckskin - Northern $1800 - $3500
                    Southern Cloth $200 - $700
                    Fancy Shawl $1000 - $3000
                    Jingle Dress $400 - $1500

                    NDN,

                    In my budget proposal, I actually have double and triple and quadruple what you have quoted. I think your prices are really low! Of course this is all minus the eagle feathers.

                    Anyways, I have identified and even talked to some crafts people around the country about commissioning them to make complete outfits when the time comes.
                    Powwows will continue to evolve in many directions. It is inevitable.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by WhoMe View Post
                      NDN,

                      In my budget proposal, I actually have double and triple and quadruple what you have quoted. I think your prices are really low! Of course this is all minus the eagle feathers.

                      Anyways, I have identified and even talked to some crafts people around the country about commissioning them to make complete outfits when the time comes.
                      Since these items will be put on public display, makes these outfits deserving of such prices. Most people I've ran across that are wanting new outfits can't afford even the prices I mentioned. Alot are willing to settle for alot less just to be able to dance.
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                      • #12
                        I heard NMAI paid Tooky and Kerri Jhane in excess of $15K for their dresses. That's some serious cash.

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                        • #13
                          Thats a lot of money ^^^ did they make their own dresses? Do all their own beadwork etc? Just curious.

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Ivanasnagu View Post
                            I heard NMAI paid Tooky and Kerri Jhane in excess of $15K for their dresses. That's some serious cash.

                            Holy Smokes....
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                            • #15
                              PRICELESS! my ndn outfit is priceless! there is no money in the world that can pay for my ndn outfit and how it makes me feel when i wear it! it's my power and my being!
                              i couldn't ever imagine selling any of my belongings at any price, no matter how big or small, nothing of mine is ever being sold.
                              it's different passing pieces down to family and/or giving away pieces of an outfit - but it's GOTTA be a good trade! ayez.. haha..
                              whatever the case, bottom line there is no way i will take money for my belongings. i think it's important to keep what you have to pass down and let the pieces continue to live and dance.
                              my mother still has our (me, my sis & bro's) belongings from when we were kiddies and will pass them along to us so we can in turn pass them on to our kiddies. i treasure what i have, what i've outgrown and what i plan to pass on because they are mine - and they belong within my family.

                              and i can't wait to possess the pieces my mother owns. she has this AWESOME corn husk "ndn purse"... haha. i can't recall where she obtained it, i think through a friend, but museums have offered her thousands for it time and time again, but she refuses to sell it. GOOD cause i can't wait for it to be MINE... MUUUAHAHAHAH... jks, but for real - i think pieces like that should be treasured rather than stuffed, stored and/or displayed in museums!

                              i'm even reluctant to let anyone borrow any of my belongings because they're all a part of MY things - i guess that's the only real thing that i'm selfish with and won't ever change my mind about - my ndn outfit...

                              now whome - i think it's something else to have outfits commissioned for display... isn't that what they did w/that one beaded dress? whatever the case, i think it would be to display more of the intricacies (SP?) that are involved in outfit making rather than the power they possess.
                              "i don't like to walk fast man - i like to strut!"

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