Papago Pima Baskets

Papago Pima Baskets

When the Spanish colonists first arrived, they named the two groups of Native Americans that were dwelling in present day Arizona in the United States and Sonora Mexico. They were labeled the “Lower Pima” and the “Upper Pima”. The Upper Pima Indians lived on the northern edge of Spanish colonization with the Apache above them, and included the Papago, Gileno, Sobaipuri, and Soba. The Sobaipuri and Soba are no longer in existence today. However, the Gileno, which were named for the Gila River in the state of Arizona, are now known as the Pima, which is a shortened Hispanic word for pi am ha’icu ,meaning “Not Something, Nothing”. They reside only in the United States. In Arizona the Papago, or “Tepary Bean People” as the Spanish called them in 1748, changed their name to the Tohono O’odham, or “Desert People”. The Papago in Sonora Mexico still call themselves Papago.

Between the cradle and the grave, baskets have been produced to serve in all aspects of traditional life. Pima and Papago , or Tohono O’odham, baskets were used for carrying, defense, adornment, furniture, culture and fine art, preparation and serving of food, religious ceremonies, war, carrying water, and social life among other things.

Even in museums the terms “Pima basketry” and “Papago basketry” are used interchangeably; however, there are some notable differences. The art of basketry is comprised of cultural choices and determined by historical processes that are unknown to us. Due to certain environmental conditions, the Papago and Pima did not have access to the same materials needed for their weaving. The Papago were surrounded by harsh, dry vegetation with an abundance of martynia. On the other hand, the Pima were surrounded by willow and cottonwood; therefore, most often a Papago Indian basket would be woven with dark martynia and a willow design. The Pima Indian basket would be woven in willow with a dark martynia pattern.

Both the Southwest Papago Indians and Pima Indians used similar techniques to create their Native American Indian baskets which include lattice and plain wrapped weaving, coarse, fine, and crude foundation coiling, lace coiling, and plaiting. However, shape and design of these two groups of Southwestern Indian basketry differ. The Papago bowl baskets have a globular shape, and their width exceeds their height. Pima bowls are more bell-shaped, and their coiled baskets have thinner, smoother walls.

Native Americans have been handcrafting jewelry since they first drew inspiration from their natural surroundings and transformed shell and stone into wearable jewelry. Some of the oldest discovered pieces date from over 10,000 years ago. The skilled artisans at Alltribes continue the age-old tradition and create captivating works of art that will surpass your expectations!

Alltribes is one of the rare jewelry stores that has a workshop employing Native American artists creating extraordinary pieces of jewelry on site. While most of our silversmiths are Navajo, we employ artists from a wide variety of backgrounds. Some work from home, on the reservation, and some work here in our shop. Alltribes Native American Art and Jewelry blends ancient history, natural beauty, and unparalleled expertise flawlessly. We are conveniently located near Scottsdale, Mesa and Phoenix, AZ in the historic town of Gilbert. Unfortunately, due to Covid and other factors, we are unable to take walk in customers at this time. We are more than happy to offer curbside pickup if you are in the area, give us a call.

Our Jewelry

The design and quality of our Silver and Turquoise jewelry are unmatched and stand far above the rest. Turquoise conveys a special meaning as it has for centuries and in populations across the globe. Turquoise signifies healing, spirit and good fortune. With masterful techniques, our artisans incorporate this semi-precious stone into beautiful and intricate designs, drawing customers from around the world.

You can own a piece of Native American artistry without spending a fortune. Alltribes provides deep discounts because we don't purchase our jewelry elsewhere. Our in-house artists and silversmiths create custom pieces without the extra expenses of middlemen, shipping and tariffs.

Our Local History

Gilbert, AZ provides the ideal location for crafting our Native American jewelry. The Navajo and Hopi Indian tribes have inhabited nearby lands for many thousands of years. Their eternal respect for natural beauty and their innate talent shines through in every handcrafted piece of jewelry.

Our dazzling, Sleeping Beauty Turquoise comes from a nearby mine in Globe, AZ. This unique and exceedingly rare turquoise is renowned for its hardness, durability, and gorgeous color. Our artisans preserve the natural beauty of this precious stone, so you can admire its elegance for years to come. A hand buffed polish protects the stones and heightens its natural beauty.

Our Tradition

In addition to Native American jewelry, Alltribes upholds the ancient traditions of Native Americans by offering more than remarkable jewelry. We offer a wide variety of Native American Cultural Art including authentic Hopi Kachina dolls, pueblo pottery, Navajo Wool Rugs, hand-dyed leather belts, dreamcatchers, tomahawks and other Southwestern and Native American artifacts, to beautify your home and your life. It is our pleasure, to help spread knowledge about the Native American culture to the general public.

As part of our continuing effort to inform and inspire, we offer a vast array of in-depth knowledge for those who want to learn more about Native Americans and the Southwest. Our online knowledge center is free for all and includes some of the most interesting and complete information available online.

Alltribes has been serving our valued customers for over 50 years, so you can rest assured that when you have a question or concern, we'll be right here, ready to help. When you purchase something online today, you never know if the company will still be there, next week or next month.

Alltribes' reputation and longstanding experience ensure you get more than just jewelry – you get a wealth of seasoned knowledge and exceptional service…..that you can count on! We consider our customers to be part of our extended family and we're proud to say that our family now spans continents. We'd love to have you join us!

In addition to our local Native American products, we offer distinguished wares, sourced from Native American tribes across the U.S. Navajo, Hopi, Zuni and other Native American artists provide one-of-a-kind items that we proudly offer to you, at direct to you prices!

Alltribes is much more than just a manufacturer, store and knowledge center. We keep a jewelry workshop on site. If you want a custom design, our silversmiths will work with you to turn your dream into reality. Have an idea for something new? Talk with our artisans and discuss how to bring it to fruition. And should your beloved jewelry ever need to be repaired, we help with that, too.

Whether you're a Native American enthusiast, a collector, a designer or simply someone who loves beauty, Alltribes showcases a diverse collection of superior artifacts, sure to satisfy even the most selective customer.