the squaw dress

1953-squawdress-b-forblog

“The Squaw Dress, a categorization label for several types of one- and two-piece dresses, was a regional style in the American Southwest in the late 1940s and became a national dress trend in the 1950s. Its defining feature, a full, tiered skirt, came in three shapes: (1) a slightly gathered skirt based on Navajo dress; (2) a “broomstick” or pleated skirt based on Navajo and Mexican attire; and (3) a fully gathered, three-tiered skirt based on contemporary Western Apache Camp Dresses or Navajo attire. In addition to the common designation of Squaw Dress, dresses with the third skirt type were also called Fiesta, Kachina, Tohono, or Patio Dress (depending on the type of decoration); the former two styles were called Navajo Dresses. Squaw Dresses were extremely popular because of their comfort and regional indigenous associations. They represented both idealized femininity and Americanness because of their Native American origins.”

Excerpted from:

What’s in a name? The 1940s-1950s “Squaw Dress”
By Parezo, Nancy J.
Publication: The American Indian Quarterly

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s