Sometimes Native American women wear feathered head regalia ornaments, usually at powwows, but they don't wear a chief's headdress.
But glitterati celebrity divas are wearing headdresses in their social media selfies and posed pics, for pictures in entertainment magazines, on the modeling runways, and on some television shows. Do they know what a headdress is or what it represents? More importantly, do they even care?
Indian chiefs wearing headdresses are usually painted on canvas or photographed in grainy black and white as old men. Their headdresses weren't slapped together in 20 minutes in some Third World sweatshop. No, each feather came as an award.
(Image by koiart71) Permission Details DMCA
There are a number of companies selling headdresses online right now. Competition attracts competition. And these headdresses seem to be marketed as a new kind of fashionable hat for young women. Or for Halloween parties, athletic events for sports mascots having Indian names, or just for goofing around with, sort of gag wardrobe wear.
Made, marketed and shipped from Oeboed, Indonesia, by
a company named Aureus Arts, it's a headdress that will make your girl look a lot more
like a peacock or a male bird-of-paradise than Sitting Bull, Red Cloud, or American
Horse, with its flaming purple feathers spanning a lengthy 90
centimeters. Compared to the headdresses these great chiefs wore, this one is very loud and flamboyant. Theirs were a bit more stodgy and sedate. (See advertisement here: https://www.etsy.com/listing/169079018/real-purple-chief-indian-headdress-90cm) In the Aureus Arts online offering, a young brunette is
posed in front of a large male tiger bearing its fangs, while sundry
other bits of subliminal brick-a-brac scream and blare in the background like a visual natural disaster warning. It's clear this item is being marketed for
girls and young women.
Aureus Arts' offering is a bit pricey -- but for less than half the price, you can purchase something labeled a "Moonlit Majesty Glow-In-The-Dark Replica Headdress," sold by the Bradford Exchange for $39.99. It comes with murals on its sides, and on these, an alpha wolf stands in the foreground, while its beta brother is howling at the moon in the distance. (See: http://www.bradfordexchange.com/products/113292001_replica-warrior-headdress-with-wolf-art.html?cm_ven=GPS&cm_cat=Google|ProductAds&cm_pla=&cm_ite=113292001&utm_source=GPS&utm_medium=Google|ProductAds&utm_campaign=&utm_term=113292001[sv1] )
There's other stuff going on
with the "Moonlit Majesty Glow-In-The-Dark Replica Headdress," too, like snow
on the ground and an evergreen tree-lined landscape deep in the horizon. But may I
ask a question? Where's the grizzly bear? Some New Agers like to see wolves and bears getting along like long-lost
buddies. And they'd probably also like to see wolves and bears with wings. The New Age crystal-twinkles love viewing apex-ambush predators flying around above tree lines, mountains and rivers.
Does this "Moonlit Majesty Glow-In-The-Dark Replica Headdress" accurately represent Indian history? Well, let me think for a bit. . . .Didn't Indian warriors use ambush attacks, and didn't they often attack at night? Weren't Indians guerrilla-style warriors who used stealth, surprise and spontaneity to their advantage? Would they have wanted to have the enemy see them arriving, wearing glow-in-the-dark war bonnets? Holy smokes! Attacking Indians would be like sitting ducks if they used such strategy -- wearing headdresses that glowed in the dark doesn't fit well with Indian history. Even a lone glowing feather on a very young brave's head would probably be visible from a quarter of a mile away on a clear, cloud-free, moonlit night. Why make such a bulls-eye spectacle before a surprise attack?
Another online offering is being marketed by a concern called BUYCOSTUMES and although the BUYCOSTUMES headdress doesn't come with wolves, the moon, a landscape of natural beauty, or glow-in-the-dark effect (and neither is it a pretty shade of neon lavender), it's still cheap - $36.99 (excluding tax, shipping and handling costs, of course). Made of bright blue and red feathers, it even has fuzzy, fluffy, cottony things hanging down on both sides. Your lady friend will look like she's grown Cotton Mather sideburns! (See: http://www.buycostumes.com/p/70316/western-authentic-indian-headdress-adult?REF=KNC-BC-PlusBox&gclid=Cj0KEQjw0POdBRCq3arGgYD05pMBEiQAmiUeTnupR2f31zo5b-Yfc4oJjYLipgqcgb00fnPa37UJvYgaAl6m8P8HAQ&kwid=productads-plaid^79636423209-sku^196736@ADL4BUYCOSTUMES-adType^PLA-device^c-adid^49025591295)
Another company - Halloween Costumes.com - offers a
yellow, white, black and green feathered monstrosity that flows from head
to toe, and costs less than $150.00. But I can't think of any
college or professional teams with all these crazy clashing colors that happen to
have an Indian sports mascot or team name. Wow! That's a lot of colors! Does
nature have a bird with feathers like this? And this extremely noisy
visual display would be too glaring and visually noisy for a zoot suit! (See: https://www.google.com/shopping/product/18275277703491605699?q=indian+headdress&sqi=2&bav=on.2,or.r_qf.&bvm=bv.70138588,d.aWw,pv.xjs.s.en_US.4GTBzt8SUZ8.O&biw=1440&bih=789&tch=1&ech=1&psi=i3S-U4PaKs2pyASZqYDICw.1404990601267.3&prds=paur:ClkAsKraXxEjmhDWw8z1aqjJyQ3eAWhOYcJFlEVZUk3XzZnwBAX9UlvNgOVMDrH3TLDSXJVT89tdsW4Et6sBtpQJj3L2kb07QbNWCUKGedxJdVyklM8uZCsAbhIZAFPVH72FGFC1xTBEI6EJRKLkkW1mvuxeqg&ei=mnS-U5mqKYSfyASjnYCwCg&ved=0CIIEEKYrMBw)
For less than ten bucks, you can order a red, green, white, blue, and yellow thingamajig of some sort - with flaming colors like those painted on the sides of an amusement ride or a city bus. I don't know if I'd actually consider it a headdress, but it's some type of Indian-looking item. From its online photo, it looks serpentine, with a big loop that descends below the head. What purpose this hanging circle has is an enigma. (click here)
All the photos, paintings and drawings of the
great Indian chiefs of old were dark and stark oil portraits, or grainy black and white
photos, of old men. Some were pencil etchings. The chiefs have weathered faces and look stoic, serious, and sometimes, annoyed - angry, even. Truthfully, I've never seen a smile on any of their faces, and I've seen a plethora of these pictures. Many of the pictures of Geronimo that I've seen show him with an angry scowl. Sometimes he's even carrying a rifle and pointing it straight ahead. Wow, the Bedonkohe Apache chief looks as mean as hell in many of his photos! Was Geronimo looking so bad ass because he was the top protector of his people? Their chief? I think so. He wasn't a warm and fuzzy guy with the white man.