American gákti

Eric Seaberg writes:

My wife Penny – who is a very good seamstress – made it for me - although I contributed much of the overall design (we took photos of some of the gáktis we saw at the Finnfest in
Minneapolis some years back – and used some of those designs along with other ideas we found in our Sami book collection). I needed a gákti that I could use for the world indigenous gathering in Giron in 2005 – as well as for the many Scandinavian festivals we attend to sell artwork. It also had to be made out of cotton so it would be more useful in a Midwestern climate. It’s interesting that you talk about an "American gákti" because that’s how I describe it when Sami friends ask me about it.

Eric recently attended an indigenous theological symposium in Sioux Falls hosted by North American Institute of Indigenous Theological Studies which included a presenter from Sápmi. For a report on the symposium, contact Eric at pseaberg1@tds.net. Now unemployed, he wishes to receive your prayers.

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Anonymous Anonymous said...

Am curious why this is debatable! I'd say, go for it. So far, my Sami ancestry is not specified--although I'm likely North Sami from my Vittangi, Sweden origins, and could possibly wear the Karesuando gahti, there is some evidence that points toward Inari or Skolt (East) Sami. Also, how do you find out what kind of Sami gakti would one wear to denote an extinct Sami tribe, as I'm possibly Kainuu lake Sami from Oulujarvi region. My ancestors came from various places, as the endogamy rate among "Finnish" Laestadians has been pretty high over the last 100+ years. I'm scouring the net on a near-daily basis looking for examples of gakti. (Even if I could find one, I'm not able to sew a stitch thank you very much!). But, let's say I could sew or find someone to sew me my gakti, which would I wear? I like Eric Seaberg's solution in incorporating elements of various design and choosing fabrics that fit into our extreme midwestern andn American climate.

--Jennifer Wagner

10:14 PM  

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