Occasionally, we are asked about the history or cultural significance of beadwork. I spend a lot of time with beads and have never had the urge to spend more time writing about them. So, Bead & Powwow Supply does not have any publications on beadwork, besides the text on powwowsupply.com.
This is a very brief list of books related to beadwork. It is by no means an exhaustive list but it is a good starting point for students writing papers on Indigenous beadwork. There is a focus on Ojibweg because I am Ojibwe and have written about my own people in my academic courses.
If you have suggested titles to add to this list, please email email@example.com. I will offer the caveat that maintaining reading lists is not our main priority at Bead & Powwow Supply. Additions may be delayed. If you are aware of an annotated bibliography of publications on Indigenous beadwork of the Americas, please let us know. We will happily share it.
Ellie Mitchell (Saginaw Ojibwe; Eagle Clan)
Owner, Bead & Powwow Supply
Anderson, Marcia G. A Bag Worth a Pony: The Art of the Ojibwe Bandolier Bag. Minnesota Historical Society Press, 2017.
Dubin, Lois Sherr. The History of Beads: From 100,000 B.C. to the Present. Abrams, 2009.
Horses, Emil Her Many, editor. Identity by Design: Tradition, Change, and Celebration in Native Women's Dresses. Collins in Association with the National Museum of the American Indian, Smithsonian Institution, 2007.
Lyford, Carrie A. Ojibwa Crafts. R. Schneider, 1982.