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Interview with Powwow Dancer Binder Jacobs

buckskin dress
Photo: Sandy Peters
Brinder Jacobs, a dancer from the Seminole Nation (Seminole-Creek), is wearing a traditional buckskin dress with split elk fringe to honor her ancestors.



Traditional fringed buckskin boot

Photo: Sandy Peters
To participate in the dancing, she also wears traditional fringed buckskin boots.

 

Brinder Jacobs, a dancer at a powwow held at Rice University, discusses the traditional Native American clothing she wears for the event.

Brinder Jacobs: My name is Brinder Jacobs, and I'm from the Seminole Nation. I am Seminole-Creek.

TOPICS: The dancers are at this powwow to participate in traditional singing and dancing and to celebrate the Native American culture. Many of them are wearing elaborate costumes. Yours is very simple and natural-looking. Could you tell us about the clothing that you are wearing for this event?

Brinder Jacobs: Yes, I am dressed this way to honor all my ancestors, my family. I want to dress the way they dressed 100 years ago. I want to stick to natural dress. They didn't have crystal bead then.

I'm wearing a traditional buckskin dress. There's no (modern) sewing. It's all handmade. The dress is made of buckskin and has elk fringe—long fringe hanging from the dress. When you dance, the fringe sways.

TOPICS: What is your jewely made of?

Brinder Jacobs: Beads of bone and brass.

TOPICS: And the feather in your hair?

Brinder Jacobs: It's a porcupine quill with eagle feathers.

TOPICS: It's clothing that truly preserves your native heritage—and it's very beautiful. Thank you for sharing with us, Brinder Jacobs.


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