Primitive SkillsAlaska Native Women Turn Fish Skins Into Clothing Material

Alaska Native Women Turn Fish Skins Into Clothing Material

This amazing look into how Alaska native women turn fish skins into clothing material is a primitive skill passed down for generations. As quoted from the article, “Salmon skin can be tougher than Gore-Tex or as soft as velvet. And everything you need to transform the scaly hide into a workable piece of clothing or art material can be found in your kitchen”.
Alaska Native Women Turn Fish Skins Into Clothing Material

Coral Chernoff starts by washing the skin in a Mason jar containing a solution of Dawn detergent and water. She periodically sloshes the mason jar around over the course of several days. “You know by feel when the oil is gone,” she said. Coral soaks the clean skin in a tannic solution made from brains and water. Then the real work starts with the constant pulling, twisting, massaging, kneading and stretching of the skin as it dries. It can take 10 hours of manipulation before a large skin is fully dried and becomes the tender texture of fine suede.

Click here to read about Alaska Native Women Turn Fish Skins Into Clothing Material:

http://www.adn.com/article/20121205/fish-skin-artists-share-their-skills-smithsonian-center

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