Rugs: North American Rugs - Navajo rugs, American Indian rugs and native American rugs
North American is the name given to flat weave rugs and blankets woven by Native Americans in the Central Western areas of the US, mainly in Arizona, New Mexico, Utah, and Colorado. These rugs are better known as Navajo rugs.
The weaving of Navajo rugs is the continuation of a long tradition of excellent craftsmanship that dates back nearly three centuries.
It is believed the Navajos learned the craft from the Pueblo Indians around 1700, as early examples of Navajo weaving show the close parallels between the two groups. The principal difference between Navajo and Pueblo weaving is that the Navajos used wool, while the Pueblos used cotton.
In the mid 1800s, the Navajos started using dye sources and yarns from the Europeans, especially the Germans and Spanish. Along with dyes and commercial yarn, the Europeans brought designs that could be incorporated into the flat weaves of the Navajos. These were usually Oriental patterns, which the Europeans apparently couldn't get enough of.
From the Navajo's own designs, the most famous examples were the 'Chief Blankets', which were worn on the shoulders of the tribe's chief. These items were extremely popular with the other Plain's Indians.
Navajo weaving changed radically in the last twenty years of the 19th century. Commercial ready-to-use yarns were available in a variety of colors, and by 1890 the Navajo Indians were weaving mainly for the trading posts and white tourists.
The traders were a great influence on the weavers, and the requests for pillow covers and bed covers to decorate white homes resulted in a proliferation of quickly woven, inferior pieces.
By 1890, after many years of blankets and bed coverings, white settlers were demanding covering for the floor. The Navajo rugs were born as the Indians were quick to oblige.
The Indians were now weaving less of their traditional simple and abstract geometric designs and more American pictorials designs including patriotic patterns and railroad scenes and houses. The traditional rugs are virtually lost and very rare today and designers seem todesire their 'Aztec' look for modern settings.
There are a few settlements that might still be weaving Navajo rugs, but much like all the other aspects of the Indians' culture, the Navajo rug is but a faint memory to them.
Clog shoes were extremely popular in the 70's and they are making quite a comeback. They are defined by their design in general. Most clogs you will find have open backs and can be slipped on. The traditional clog was one with a wooden sole and a leather top. They have a toe that is rounded and a little upturned. The shoes remind you of a more modern version of the Little Dutch shoes. They are very trendy indeed. Today you can find clogs with backs as well. They look very much like the traditional clogs; however they have that extra backing to help you keep your shoe on your foot. Clogs are also so popular because they are very comfortable to wear. They are among the most comfortable shoe out there.
Women's Clogs Women love their clogs. Clogs offer women the ease of just slipping your foot into your shoe and being on your way. Most women also love the fact that they can wear a breezy clog in the warmer weather without worrying about people seeing their toes. Some women use them specifically in times when their toe nails need a little extra attention that they have not gotten around to yet. Other women also love that they can still wear their clogs in cooler weather with socks. They are simply shoes that can go from one season to the next effortlessly. You will find women wearing traditional clogs with wood and leather, suede covered clogs, or even garden clogs. Many gardeners love to wear plastic clogs in their garden because they can be easily washed off and used over and over again. You can find garden clogs in most home and garden stores. Canvas clogs are becoming more popular as well. The clog looks like a tennis shoe; only it is backless, making it a clog. You can find very athletic versions or simple Keds versions of this type of clog.
Men's Clogs Most men are afraid of wearing clogs. Traditionally only women wore clogs, which can scare the manliest of men away altogether. Those men who are brave enough to try them however end up loving them the most. Clogs for men are very masculine. They typically are a lot like sandals in many ways. They are brown or black and made of leather. Where women's clogs often have a chunky heel, clogs for men don't. Many men prefer to wear clogs with backs on them. They think it makes the shoe look manlier, which could be true to some. They can wear these interesting shoes to work, on the golf course, or even to church. Overall, they are very versatile which appeals to men.
Medical Clogs More and more we are seeing medical clogs being used in hospitals and other medical facilities. Medical clogs are those with thick rubber soles. The upper area of the clog is usually made of rubber as well. These are perfect for nurses, doctors, and other medical staff. They are so great because they protect the staff's feet from germs and potentially hazardous materials on the floor. Another benefit is that the medical clogs are slip resistant which helps the staff stay safe when their floor is wet. They can also be cleaned and disinfected very quickly and easily, which makes them even more appealing to medical staff. Their durability is attractive as well. Some medical facilities will not allow their staff to wear backless clogs however, so they must purchase clogs with backs on them. These rules are made to avoid any type of injury.
Clog shoes are not only functional, but they are also very fashionable. If you want to build a well-rounded shoe collection, you should certainly have a few pairs of clogs in the mix. You can wear them with jeans, pants, or shorts. While you might want to avoid wearing them with dresses or skirts, there is always that one exception. So, try them out with every outfit you own to see when they work the best. And, don't forget to use them in the garden or around the house to protect your feet. You can get your work done comfortably and be able to clean them easily after the job is complete.
Need some fashion advice? Here are some of the 10 worst fashion blunders-- and how to avoid them. When it comes to fashion, most people want to look their best. Unfortunately, many people also commit common fashion blunders on a daily basis without even realizing it. Here are some of the ten worst fashion blunders-- and how you can avoid them. 1. Clothes that are too tight. Clothes that are too tight just look bad. If you are habitually sucking in your belly or laying down on the floor to get your pants zippered, you may be trying to cram yourself into a too-small size. Tight clothes do not make you look thinner; on the contrary, the tight clothes will accentuate your bulges. 2. Showing underwear lines. No one wants to see your panty and bra lines. Invest in some thong underwear for the days when you want to wear those white pants. Avoid decorative or lacy bras when you are wearing sheer or light colored tops-- the bra decor will show through. Make sure to wear an appropriate color bra-- black bras do not look good underneath white tops! 3. Clothes that are too baggy. If you're heavy, you may think you can cover things up by dressing yourself in baggy, tent-like clothes. Unfortunately, the baggy clothes will only make you look heavier. Try to find comfortable clothes in your correct size. 4. Clothes that are too short. Micro mini skirts come in and out of style, but they only look good on very few people. In general, clothes that are too short should be avoided. If you are in a work environment, make sure your skirts are an appropriate length (usually no more than an inch or two above the knee). 5. Not dressing your age. A sixty year old woman, no matter how great her body is, should avoid shopping in the department store "Juniors" department. Sure the clothes are hip and trendy, but you'll look much better if your attire is age-appropriate. Skip the belly shirts and the Daisy Duke shorts and try to find stylish clothes that are more suitable for your age range. 6. Clothes that are out of style. The Nehru jacket went out of style in the 1960's, so if you still have one in your closet it may be time to part ways with it. The same thing goes for pencil-thin neckties and shirts with big, bulky shoulder pads. Out of date fashions do not look good on anyone, period. If you're holding on to these clothes in the hopes that they may come back in style, keep in mind that, while fashion trends do tend to cycle back, they usually come back with a slightly variation. Thus, it's doubtful that your pastel-colored Miami Vice style jacket will ever be in vogue again. 7. Clothes with wrinkles and stains. This one sounds like a no-brainer, but it's truly unbelievable how many people break this fashion rule. You don't want to look like you just rolled out of bed, so if your clothes are wrinkled-- please iron them! Scan your clothes under a bright light for stains before you put them on-- sometimes unsightly stains just seem to appear out of nowhere. 8. Forgetting important undergarments. Even flat-chested women need to wear a bra every day. A bra provides you with much needed support and coverage. Many women go for years wearing the incorrect size bra, but an ill-fitting bra will not provide you with the support that you need. Take the time to go to a lingerie or department store and have yourself measured and fitted for a bra by a professional. 9. Wearing the wrong color. Depending on your skin tone, certain colors may not look so good on you. A lime green top, for example, may make your complexion look sallow. Consider getting a professional color chart done to determine which colors are most flattering for your complexion and then avoid colors that clash with your skin tone. 10. Wearing worn out clothes, shoes or pantyhose. Even well-made clothes wear out eventually. Check garments for worn out elbows, rips and tears. Scuffed shoes are another big fashion no-no, so invest in some shoe polish to remedy that problem. If the heels on your favorite shoes are getting worn, take them to be repaired. You can only get a few good wearings out of a typical pair of pantyhose, so don't waste your time trying to repair rips with clear nail polish. Pantyhose is generally inexpensive, so just spring for a fresh pair when your old ones become worn out.
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