In today’s world, with the mass production of goods and services, it can be hard to find truly original Native leather bracelets. There are imitations of Native American leather bracelets, but these mimics have neither the charm nor the distinctive mark of handmade Native American leather bracelets. Native Americans have a passion to preserve their past—that rich history that spans the centuries before the discovery of the New World by Christopher Columbus and the present day.
Handmade Native American leather bracelets are becoming popular again, thanks to the efforts of those Native American descendants who could not bear to see the beautiful tradition of leatherwork fade into the mists of history.
History of Native American Leather Bracelets
Native Americans made their leather crafts from the skins of deer, buffalo, and other animals. The skin was tanned before it was used. Air-drying caused the skin to become tough and hard, making it ideal for shields and other sturdy applications but unsuitable for finer leatherwork. Softer, more pliable leather for clothing and jewelry was cured by pickling, brain tanning, and wet and dry salting of the skin.
Native American leather bracelets come in many styles and designs. Some leather bracelets consist of a single leather strap tied around the wearer’s wrist. Other Native leather bracelets are more complex and include eagle claws, beads and wire.
Braided leather bracelets may be created from a three- or four-strand braid. These bracelets can be tied with straps or snapped around the wrist. Braided Native American leather bracelets are available in a variety of color combinations, from single- to multi-toned. Some braided Native American leather bracelets have wire woven into the braid.
There are several styles of beaded Native American leather bracelets. Some bracelets have beads woven into a braided strap. Other bracelets have beads fastened to the top surface of a stiffened wristband. Many beaded Native American leather bracelets have colorful designs that vary from tribe to tribe.
Turquoise has often been used to adorn Native leather bracelets. Turquoise, a semi-precious stone, was in high demand among Native American tribes because of its beauty and its symbolic protective powers. Native American leather bracelets with turquoise as part of the design were especially valuable.
Native American jewelry captures the beauty of the earth and the mark of nature in its design. The timeless attraction of Native leather bracelets is very powerful today, adding a classic touch to any outfit.