Halloween Masks and Kachinas

Halloween has its roots in Celtic culture, where November 1 marked the New Year. On the day before the New Year, October 31, ancient Celts believed that portals opened enabling the dead to take humans to the spirit world. Over time, Romans and Christians influenced the holiday and masks were worn as a protection—a way to disguise a person so they wouldn’t be taken to the spirit world—effectively blurring the line between humans and spirits. Read More

Posted: October 28, 2013 By:

The Story of Storytellers

The oral tradition is the time-honored way Native American cultures pass traditional values and beliefs from one generation to the next. The first storyteller figurine was created in 1963 by Helen Cordero of Cochiti Pueblo. Representing her grandfather’s way of telling stories by gathering everyone around him, Cordero was able to recreate a clay effigy to reflect his approach to storytelling. From there, the first storyteller figurine was born. Read More

Posted: October 21, 2013 By:

Fair Trade at Palms

October is Fair Trade Month. Fair trade recognizes the hard work and craftsmanship of farmers, artisans and workers by ensuring they are justly compensated for their products. Developing fair trade standards takes a substantial investment of time and money to make sure they benefit producers. As such, fair trade organizations, like the FLO, have focused on developing standards for industries that have the largest impact on small producers worldwide, like agriculture and some manufactured products.

Why Isn’t Palms Trading Company Certified by the Fair Trade Organization?

Currently, there are no fair trade standards for Native American art, pottery or jewelry—so there is no certification for us to obtain.

How does Palms Trading Company Ensure Fair Trade?

Palms Trading Company takes great care to honor the spirit of fair trade. We do this in a number of ways:

Indian Arts & Crafts Association Member

The Indian Arts & Crafts Association (IACA) is an International organization that was developed to protect Native American arts and crafts from imitators. As a member of this organization, we ensure that we only sell authentic Native American art, unless it is otherwise labeled or specified. This protects the artists we work with and the collectors we sell to.

Fair Pricing

Paying a fair price to Native American artists is essential to maintaining a sustainable market that keeps their traditions alive. Since there is no database available to check similar pieces, pricing Native American art demands evaluating several components, including things like:

Evaluating all of these components and determining the quality of a piece is something you learn through observation over time.

Relationships

To us, selling and appreciating Native American art is more than just finding great pieces to share with collectors—it’s also creating relationships with the artists and learning the stories behind their work. We honor the artists we work with and the traditions they preserve by striving to create personal relationships with them.

When you choose Palms Trading Company for your Native American jewelry, pottery and art, you can be confident that you are getting an authentic piece and helping to sustain Native American art traditions. You can also be confident that you are getting a fair price for your purchase. Since we buy directly from the artists, there’s no middleman distributor—and that allows us to pass on the savings to you.

Posted: October 7, 2013 By:

Balloon Fiesta!

Celebrating Old and New Traditions

Every fall, people from all over New Mexico look forward to the beauty of yellow aspens, the smell of roasting green chile and the Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta! Read More

Corn Maiden

People native to both South and North America are often known as “corn people” because their civilizations depended on the success of corn crops. So, it comes as no surprise that much corn and its harvest plays a big role in Native American Indian tradition and folklore. One figure’s importance to the success of the harvest is indicated by her representation in Native American Indian pottery and stone fetish art forms—the Corn Maiden. Read More

September Pueblo Feast Days

September is full of opportunities to be a part of the rich cultural traditions of the Pueblos. This month, a number of Pueblos celebrate annual feast days in honor of their patron saints and other days with special religious significance. Read More

Posted: September 2, 2013 By: