At the Mid-America All-Indian Center's annual American Indian Festival, though, you won't have to worry about buying knockoff art, museum executive director
The festival this weekend will feature 26 Indian arts and crafts booths, including traditional jewelers, sculptors and painters.
"It's about giving them a marketplace -- an opportunity to shop directly with the people who are making these products," Scott said.
He and his wife Katharine, who is Choctaw, have been selling authentic handmade Indian jewelry for the past 41 years, he said.
And he likes to emphasize the word "authentic."
"A lot of people are cognizant of the stuff that is handmade,"
From their home in Eudora, the Goombis buy jewelry primarily from the Navajo and
"We've had a good relationship with them, and really for the Indian people it's a win-win situation," Goombi said. "We keep it authentic. We know the Indian people that make it and guarantee that it's Indian handmade."
He sells a variety of goods, including men's belt buckles and bolo ties, women's rings, necklaces, earrings and pendants -- all ranging in price from
"We have all kinds of stones -- white buffalo turquoise is a real hot one right now," Goombi said.
The problem of counterfeit American Indian jewelry has been compounded in recent years with the rise of sites like
"It's a complex issue," Eriacho said. "Why am I beating my head against the wall when nobody gives a hoot?"
Eriacho, who is Navajo and
"About 75 percent of our
Scott said all of the artists who will be selling their wares at the American Indian Festival have been vetted thoroughly -- every artist had to be personally invited by the museum to set up a booth.
"We know the quality of the work before it gets here," Scott said. "We want to protect our artists and not misrepresent anything we sell."
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