Man's winter outfit, made by Leonie Qrunnut
Iglulingmiut, around AD 1985
From Igloolik, Nunavut, eastern Canadian Arctic
This man's winter outfit consists of an outer parka (qulittaq) and an inner parka (atigi), inner and outer trousers, several layers of footwear, and mittens. Except for the sealskin boots, all the garments are made of caribou skin.
In Igloolik, caribou was the most common material for making winter clothing. Caribou skin is very warm; the hair growth is twice as dense as on seal skin, and the hollow guard hairs enclose air that acts as insulation against the cold.
'Of course caribou skin was the only source of clothing that we
could get when I was young. The textiles that were available to us
were not good for winter wear. As a matter of fact, I do not
consider them to be the type of material that you could use in
winter. I am still like that; whenever I am wearing textiles, I
have to put on layers and layers of clothing on my body and legs,
and even at that it will not warm me up. This is because I am a
real Inuit. I do not consider textiles warm clothing.'
Niomi Panikpakuttuk, 1996
Other views: detail from the engraving Nakaho & His Wife Oomna after a drawing by G.F. Lyon (Parry 1824), showing that around 1820, the parkas of men from Igloolik had long backflaps.
J.C.H. King, First peoples, first contacts: (London, The British Museum Press, 1999)
B.K. Issenman, Sinew of survival: the living (Vancouver, UBC Press, 1997)
J.E. Oakes and R. Riewe, Our boots: an Inuit womans art (New York, Thames and Hudson, 1996)
J C H King, Birgit Pauksztat and Robert Storrie (eds.), Arctic Clothing (London, The British Museum Press, 2005)
AOA Ethno 1986.Am19.11;AOA Ethno 1986.Am10.14 (boots)