Local Native artists and craftsmen sold their handmade items at the 2021 Native Bazaar in Tulalip.
The event was held from Nov. 12 to 14 and will return from Dec. 3 to 5 as well.
It is held at the Don Hatch Jr. Youth Center at 6700 Totem Beach Road, Tulalip, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. each day.
“It’s a great place for people to come and purchase Native art that you wouldn’t be able to go into a store and just buy,” said Tammy Taylor, the main organizer for the event.
There are about 50 vendors signed up for the event who sell a variety of traditional and modern art pieces, including beadwork, blankets, quilts, drums and rattles.
“There’s lots of interesting stuff,” said Rebecca Zegstroo, who has come as a customer to the bazaar for the past three years.
“We even have [cedar] graduation caps that have become a staple for our Native children,” said Taylor.
The cedar caps are frequently worn by Native Americans graduating high school or college in recent years.
Taylor and her husband sell their own goods at the bazaar with traditional cedar baskets and other items.
“We harvest our cedars off the trees to make our beautiful baskets and our regalia,” she said.
The annual bazaar was started more than two decades ago by Tulalip Tribal member Carolyn “Uppy” Thornberry.
“She encouraged me and my husband to actually sell our wares, which we never did before,” said Taylor.
They mostly gave the items away.
“We never thought we could sit here and sell them,” she said.
Many people come to Taylor at the event to talk about artists in their family.
“You’ll hear stories about maybe their great-grandmother who knit wool or elderly men will come in and talk about how they used to be a master drum maker,” she said.
She hopes the bazaar encourages people to continue with their traditional arts and traditional crafts.
“It is a beautiful thing for people to see there is an outlet and that it can help people survive in some ways,” said Taylor.
Lyla Skaggs comes to the bazaar most years to sell her fabric items.
“I do really good here,” she said. She also enjoys the community there. “I know all the people, or the majority of them,” she said.
Many of the artists enjoy seeing each other, said Taylor.
“It’s good in here and everyone is visiting. You get to see people and art we haven’t seen in a while because we didn’t set up last year,” she said.
There was no event last year because of the pandemic and Taylor admitted she was nervous about this year.
“The COVID outbreak in Indian country is so big,” and all across the country, the Taylor.
Closer to the date of the event cases began trending down and she decided that people would be safe at the event.
“They are keeping themselves safe, and that’s what we need to do, to remember to mask up and wash our hands,” said Taylor.
Taylor said she is glad how many people from the community come out to the bazaar each year to support local artists.
“Thank you to the community for always coming out and supporting us. Every one of us appreciates the love that comes through the doors,” she said.