Tribal-Inspired Fashion

Oct 4, 2012

From beaded bags to full-size headdresses, the tribal-inspired trend dominated fashion blogs and retail catalogs last summer and has continued into fall. Just one fashionable beaded bracelet can be the perfect accent to that earth-toned outfit for an easy weekend look. Or, pair a colorful necklace with a tribal print for an autumn evening concert. Whether you peyote-stitch a bracelet or strut a pair of beadwoven earrings, let your fringe fly!

Here's some great tribal bead-spiration for you!

via Montana Treasures by MJ


via Anthropologie


via Free People


via Montana Treasures by MJ


via Free People


via Anthropologie

Click here for free Native American beadwork patterns, or pick up Beading in the Native American Tradition by David Dean from the Interweave Store. And be sure to catch the Dazzling Dream Catchers earrings by Kristen Winter in the August/September 2012 issue of Beadwork magazine.

Bead chic!

Kate Wilson
Project Editor


Featured Product

Beading In The Native American Tradition

Availability: Out Of Stock
Price: $24.95


Learn beadwork techniques passed down from generations of Native Americans in this complete history of native beadwork from artist David Dean of Choctaw descent.


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D.M.Z wrote
on Oct 4, 2012 2:01 PM

Kate, nice examples, I didn't expect to like them that much. I've always been drawn to tribal patterns from various countries. Donna

firecat wrote
on Oct 8, 2012 6:45 PM

I'm uncomfortable with the title of this blog post, "Tribal-Inspired Fashion," because of the long history of white people appropriating Native lands, religious iconography, and art designs. I know that the author of the book you're promoting is of Choctaw descent, so I'm not objecting to the book. But I don't get the impression that the "inspirational" images used in the post were made by tribal people or that tribal people benefit from those items. Particularly, several of the links are from Anthropologie and Free People. Those sites are associated with Urban Outfitters, which has a long history of wrongful appropriation of Native designs (and lying about it).

Kate Wilson wrote
on Oct 9, 2012 1:05 PM

Dear Firecat,

The term "tribal" refers to something of, relating to, or characteristic of a tribe, according to Merriam-Webster's Dictionary. It best describes the style that is imitated in these fashions, which were inspired by tribal patterns and art from all over the world, not just Native American tribes. It is common practice in the art world to borrow elements from other artworks that we appreciate. I never meant to offend anyone, and I think it's wonderful that the artwork of people all over the world is being celebrated in current fashion trends.


Kate Wilson