J.CAC VOLUME 31 (2006)

The Re-Treatment of an Inuit Bead Skin Parka

Heather Dumka

This paper describes the treatment of a badly damaged Inuit parka made of caribou skin and decorated with heavy, beaded fabric panels. The parka was originally repaired in 1967 when most of the panels were restored by re-beading and lining with new fabric, and the skin was repaired with sewn leather patches. This earlier restoration distorted the shape of the parka and did not stabilize the skin, resulting in further tears. The re-treatment of the parka involved removing all of the previous skin repairs as well as the beaded panels. Tears and losses in the skin were patched using BEVA 371 sprayed onto a spun-bonded nylon fabric (Cerex). The parka was then lined with Cerex to provide additional support for the beaded panels, which were stitched back into place. One of the panels, which had not been previously restored, was stabilized and lined onto new fabric prior to reattachment.

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