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DMargot and I love to paint and embellishSnippetsDC our shoes. We try to stick to simple, easy-to-replicate designs that only require a few coats of paint, and maybe a charm or a length of trim to enhance our overall design. Sometimes I like to paint a more complicated pattern or picture on a larger surface, like the shoes pictured. But there are others doing elaborate and incredible things with shoes. One of those people is bead artist Teri Greeves.

A member of the Kiowa nation, Greeves grew up on the Wind River Reservation in Wyoming and learned many different types of native beading. She’s been beading since she was eight years old and it shows. Her work is mind-boggling. Not only does she bead bracelets and tanned hides, but tennis shoes. I’d love to share some of those with you now.

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Image courtesy of Native Appropriations

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Close up of heel of Beaded High Tops by Teri Greeves, 2005. Glass beads, commercial “All Star” High Top Tennis Shoes of canvas, rubber. Collection of Natalie Fitz-Gerald. Photo by Ricardo Martinez. 2009 From the exhibition: Native Couture II: Innovation and Style Museum of Indian Arts and Culture

 

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Image courtesy of the Brooklyn Museum

Teri_greevesTeri Greeves says, “I bead contemporary Native life.” I think she beads that and so much more. These painstaking, delicate, intricate wonders are an expression of love and immense talent. I hope you enjoy gawking as much as we have.

P.S. Michelle Obama recently presented one of Greeves’ clutch purses embellished with a beaded hummingbird as a state gift to Mexico’s first lady, Margarita Zavala.

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