First Nations Porcupine Quill Earrings

  Made in the Northwest Territories

In the heart of the Deh Cho Region in Canada’s Northwest Territories live the Deh Gah Gotie Dene (people who live by the river). The Dene people are known as the keepers of the land, supporting conservation and respect for the wildlife and land. Long ago, the Deh Gah Gotie Dene lived nomadically, moving seasonally to follow game. They abided by the Dene Laws to conserve and take only what is needed from the land, using every part of the animals that they hunted.

The porcupine quills used to make these earrings are collected locally from porcupines killed for food. A healthy adult porcupine has approximately 30,000 off-white quills. The quills are carefully pulled out by hand as pliers can easily crack the quills. After the quills are pulled, they are washed in hot soapy water. It takes at least five changes of water to remove the natural grease. Once cleaned, the rinsed quills are spread out on towels to dry. The quills are sorted by size; the large ones being used for jewellery. Each pair of porcupine quill earrings is individually hand-crafted by members of the Deh Gah Gotie Dene First Nations and is completely unique.

Every earring design is unique and may not be exactly as shown.