Birchbark Makuk

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Ojibwe scraped birchbark makuk.

Among the many beautiful objects made for everyday use are origami-like folded and sewn birch bark containers called makuk. Used for the storage of food, money, and other small items, these baskets can be intricately engraved. The designs on them are usually geometric, and appear to bear a relationship to the repeated geometric designs found on Ojibwe woven basswood bags and beaded loomed garters, and have likely been part of Anishinaabe tradition for thousands of years.