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Welcome to day two of Tribal Business News’ 12 days of Indigenous holiday gifts guide. In the spirit of supporting Indigenous artists and entrepreneurs and drawing attention to some truly gorgeous and inspired items, we are presenting 12 consecutive days of Native-made products perfect for holiday gift-giving, including giving to yourself.

Day 2: 

B. Yellowtail Silk and Stars Set, $75, byellowtail.com, debbiedesjarlaisdesign.com

Combining the textures and talents of two Indigenous designers and businesswomen, this stationery and scarf set merges luxury and culture. 

The scarf, designed by Northern Cheyenne and Crow entrepreneur Bethany Yellowtail, owner of the B. Yellowtail brand, is 100 percent silk, and depicts ivory elk teeth, which are a symbol of prosperity in Crow culture. 

And the stationery, created by Turtle Mountain Chippewa and Fort Peck Assiniboine descendant Debbie Desjarlais of Debbie Desjarlais Design spotlights star quilts. The striking traditional textiles symbolize generosity and honor, and are given to show love and gratitude.

“I’m trying to communicate the beauty of Native culture and to teach people about the Assiniboine. I believe the more people know about our culture, the more sensitive people are in general.” Desjarlais said. “I’m not a quilter, and it’s not about quilting. It’s about what the star quilts mean to Native people and the honor of receiving a star quilt from someone.”

The note card set includes four different star quilt designs. The story of each quilt, which Desjarlais wrote with the help of her mother, is told on the back of the cards. 

“The star quilt cards would make a great gift because they are blank inside, brightly colored and can be used for any occasion,” Desjarlais said.

Snatch a few sets for friends and family, and make sure to get one for yourself so you can sport the sumptuous scarf and properly thank the gift-givers in your life without having to sew a quilt or hunt an elk.


Previous gift ideas: 

Day 1: Quirky, comical calendar by Ricardo Caté 

About The Author
Tamara Ikenberg
Contributing Writer
Tamara Ikenberg is a contributing reporter at Tribal Business News reporting on the arts and culture and tourism industries, and contributing to coverage of the Alaska Native business community. Based in Southern California, Ikenberg was a contributing writer for Native News Online and has reported for The Alaska Dispatch News, The Courier-Journal in Louisville, The Mobile Press Register, NYLON Magazine and The Baltimore Sun. She also previously worked as a grant and article writer at Juneau-based Sealaska Heritage Institute.
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