Alaska Native Collections – Sharing Knowledge

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Skin scraper

ikuutaq “skin scraper with long curved handle”
Language: Qawiaraq Iñupiaq

The skin, any kind of hide, has to be softened before you sew it. They use them to scrape the skins.

—Francis Charles, 2001

Most contemporary Iñupiaq skin sewers use commercially prepared hides to make parkas and boots. In the past, women used a tool like this to clean, stretch, and soften the skins of caribou and other animals used for clothing.

Culture: Iñupiaq
Region: Norton Sound, Alaska
Object Category: Tools
Dimensions: Length 27cm
Accession Date: 1949
Museum: National Museum of the American Indian
Museum ID Number: 212532.000