Object photography

Image © Dennis Helmar, 2008.
Click image to enlarge +

Object description

  • Hopi artist
  • Belt, 20th century
  • Wool
  • Southwestern United States
  • L: 98 in, W: 10 in (L: 248.9 cm, W: 25.4 cm)
  • Gift of Anne L. Seamans, 2007
  • E303557
  • The groom and other men in the Hopi community weave the bride's robe and sash
  • Sometimes called a "rain sash," the long fringe symbolizes falling rain and the braided balls represent rain clouds

Hopi wedding ceremonies take years of planning and preparation to fulfill respective familial and cultural obligations. Among the many time-consuming, labor-intensive activities is weaving the bride's wedding sash. Presented to her with a robe and ears of corn after the actual wedding ceremony, the cotton sash is carefully rolled in a reed case. The sash's tassels hang out one side of the case, symbolizing the much-needed rain that sustains life for communities in the arid American Southwest.


This is an off-white, wool wedding belt with long 24 1/2 inch tassels at either end. The tassels begin with a round wool ball, and extend the remainder of the way in a simple braid.

Exhibition History

  • Wedded Bliss: The Marriage of Art and Ceremony, Peabody Essex Museum, Salem, MA.; April 26, 2008 through September 14, 2008