Artists and Designers

Sioux Valley Dakota Nation /

Ribbons and Roots



Me and my four sisters were raised by a single dad. It was he who taught me how to use an old Singer sewing machine. In recent years, I began to notice more and more women wearing beautiful ribbon skirts and I was determined to learn how to make one for myself. I approached an Elder with tobacco and asked for guidance. With help from my mom and sister and watching YouTube videos, I was able to design and sew my first ribbon skirt. Although I have no training in the arts, I have been sewing ribbon skirts for about five years, initially as a fun way to gather with my mom and sisters at the occasional craft market. I started my business in 2020 when the pandemic hit and selling ribbon skirts helped to support my education and pay for my tuition in my Masters Degree in Social Work. This soon became my passion and a wonderful way to meet people!

In my full-time work I am a Social worker and counsellor. I believe that Creator gave us all natural gifts to help us heal. For me, sewing skirts and connecting with people is incredibly healing. Learning my culture, meeting kind teachers, and reclaiming my sense of identity and belonging have been healing for me. I believe ribbon skirts are a reflection of our nationhood, sacredness, and solidarity as Indigenous women and Two-Spirit people. The shape of the skirt represents the symbol of the circle, reminding us of our connection and continuity with all of creation. When I sew, I put good energy into my creations and hope that by wearing a skirt I make, I can be part of someone’s journey to standing in their own Indigeneity. I chose my business name, Ribbons and Roots because when we wear our ribbon skirts, we are grounding ourselves in who we are and where we come from – as Creator would want for us.
Pidamaya ye!