Elaborately patterned "blankets" which were used primarily as a body wrap, rather than a bed cover, were popular items of clothing used by the Diné people of the Southwestern United States. Always an indicator of wealth, styles initially indicated the rank of the wearer. By the end of the nineteenth century, the wearing blanket became more of a fashion statement with bold, individualistic designs were created to dazzle the viewer.
During this period the Diné weavers, who were women, drew inspiration from the large and dramatic serapes woven by men in the workshops of Northern Mexico during the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. An example of this style is also on view in this gallery.