In This Place

Title: In This Place

Beaded Cherokee purse by Martha Berry

Size: Approx. 7 H x 7 W x D (excluding handle)

Completed: Spring 2017

Winner: 1st Place, Beadwork/Quillwork, Artesian Arts Festival, Sulphur, OK, May 2017.

Materials: Wool stroud cloth, European glass beads, cotton, silk ribbon, freshwater pearls. To the extent possible, all materials are period authentic to c. 1820.

Cherokees believe there are seven directions: East, North, West, South, Above, Below, and In This Place. This bag is all about finding your place in life.

The equilateral cross represents both the Sun and our Ceremonial Fires. Our colors for the four cardinal directions are red for the East, blue for the North, black for the West, and White for the South.

The beaded design on the flap on this purse represents our path in life. Just as in life, there are an equal number of gentle curves and sharp turns. Part of finding our place in life is navigating each curve thrown at us. Eventually, we come to understand that we can, indeed, survive even the sharpest turns. When we finally settle on our place in life, we are free to bloom where we are planted, excel at our goals no matter what our circumstances. In short, we come to accept ourselves. It is good to be in this place.