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The Marriage Basket

The weaving of baskets is an ancient tribal tradition. Baskets are created for both practical and ceremonial uses. They are also an expression of tribal identity and the individual artistic creativity of the weaver. The Navajo Marriage Basket (also called a Wedding Basket) is one such basket from a specific tribe.

Traditionally woven by the women of the Bride's family, the Marriage Basket is the vessel that will hold a Blue Corn wedding cake. During the ceremony, the basket is passed and all the guests enjoy a bit of the cake. Passing the Blue Corn cake symbolizes the sharing of abundance and prosperity from Grandmother Earth. This act blesses the couple, so that their marriage may also enjoy abundance and prosperity.

The ancient design of the basket is full of imagery that deepens its beauty and holds within it the creation story of the People. The center coil symbolizes creation from which all things are birthed. The outward spiral of the design emulates our journey into wisdom. The starburst represents the union of generations past and present. Every basket has a Gate, which is called the “Sipapu,” a path from the center for Spirit to come and go. Guardians are woven into the outer ring to stand in protection of the gate. In addition to being the vessel for the wedding cake, the marriage basket is a powerful healing tool used in the Navajo healing ceremonies known as "Sings."

The Marriage Basket also represents the womb from which all things are birthed. The birthing process refers to and includes for example; physical children, a wedding (the birthing of a relationship) as well as our spiritual children; our dreams and visions into actualization. It holds within its structure the balance of the feminine and masculine energy- both energies in proper alignment with which we create new life.

Sweet Medicine Shoppe carries authentic Navajo Marriage Baskets, most of which are older and have been used in ceremony. All of our Marriage Baskets have 10 or more points (guardians) on the outside ring. If you have a request for a specific number of points, please let us know. Marriage Baskets are hand-made, one of a kind items and their availability is limited. We do our best to fulfill specific requests. If we do not have a basket that meets your request, we will let you know what we have in stock. If it does not meet your needs, we are glad to begin the quest for your basket.

We are truly grateful to all those who weave the traditional Navajo Wedding Baskets.

Many blessings