Plains Indians Parfleches

Plains Indians fashioned rawhide containers for the storage of various kinds of goods. The word "parfleche" was adapted from the early French fur traders. It refers to the untanned hide used to make to make shields, shields used to turn away (pare) arrows (fleches). In time, the term came to refer to these distinctive rawhide containers and envelopes.
The most common parfleche used to store pemmican has the shape of a double-folded envelope, there were also boxes, pouches and cylindrical parfleches. Parfleches were well decorated by native women. Their designs contributed heavily to the genesis of the various tribal styles of bead embroidery that emerged on the Plains during the 19th century. Parfleches were mostly made of elk and horse rawhides. The parfleches shown on this page are made of wapiti rawhide, decorated with natural pigment paintings..
Crow Parfleche Crow Style Parfleche
Elk hide, natural pigment painting, approx .60 cm x 30 cm.
PCF30 - Crow Parflèche ... $ 285.00

Painted Crow Parfleche
PFC31 - Crow... $ 285.00
Sioux Parfleche
PFC32 - Sioux.. $ 550.00/Pair

Arapaho Parfleche Envelop Arapaho Style Parfleche
Elk rawhide, natural pigment painted decorations, approx .60 cm x 30 cm.
PCF36 - Arapaho Parflèche .. $ 285.00

On the War Path
The finest clothing and regalia, including warbonnets and coup feathers, were carried along on war expeditions, so that time permitting they could be put on before the enemy was engaged. Most of this gear was packed in parfleches and cases suspended from the saddle. The tube type of parfleche such as these ones were used as storage container for the fragile eagle feather warbonnets.

Crow Rawhide Parfleche Tube
Crow Style Parfleche Tube
Buffalo rawhide, brain tanned fringes, natural pigment paintings.
PFC40 - Crow Parfleche ... $ 310.00
Blackfoot Rawhide Parfleche Tube
Blackfoot Style Parfleche Tube
Elk rawhide, brain tanned fringes, natural pigment painted decorations.
PFC41 - Blackfoot Parfleche .. $ 335.00

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