How To Wear A Concho Belt?
A concho belt is a traditional Native American accessory comprising a series of conchos (ornamental discs) and a belt. Regarding Native American jewelry, one of the most striking pieces is the Concho belt. These silver decorative pieces are often adorned with inlaid Turquoise, Coral, and Lapis gemstones.
Concho belts are a long-standing Native tradition that reportedly began appearing in Navajo in the late 1860s or early 1870s. Other Native Americans, such as Zuni and Hopi, also made traditional concho belts before long.
Adding a concho belt to your wardrobe can instantly elevate your Southwestern style. They add a unique touch to your outfit and help accentuate your waistline, giving you a flattering silhouette you’ll love wearing.
For example, if you wear a hoodie or sweater with long sleeves, layering a belt will keep the jacket in place and give your outfit an extra boost of southwestern appeal. Or if you’re wearing your favorite pair of denim jeans, a belt with conchos will give them an edge and make them stand out.
Most belts have loops, which can secure your pants when you don’t want them to fall down. Brands like Levi’s and Wrangler have a history of awarding rodeo stars with large belt buckles. This is because they do big business making and selling belts.
Leather concho belts are generally made from an extra-long piece of leather. The leather belt is not punched and can be slid along the end panels until the hook and loop fit perfectly for your waist size.
You can also purchase a belt fitted with conchos and a buckle already on it. These are great options for people who want to add a concho belt to their collection but don’t have the time or the skill to customize their own.
Depending on the design of the belt, you may need to punch holes in the leather for the buckle and conchos. Some leather-mounted conchos have a tongue that fits into the holes you’ve punched in the belt, but this style is often too long for standard waist sizes. Instead, punch a hole in the leather strap, slide the conchos to your desired length, or cut off the excess length.
Link concho belts usually have 12 to 18 conchos connected by rings. They are quite adjustable and can be fastened to your waist with a buckle secured around any of the rings between the conchos.
Some concho belts are all silver, while others might feature stones inset into the center or around the perimeter of the concho. These can be shiny or matte silver, antiqued, or highly polished.
Conchos are decorative disks used to decorate saddles, bridles, and clothing. They are also often fashioned into necklaces, bracelets, and earrings.
They were first made by Native American silversmiths centuries ago. They began to use hammered silver dollars strung on leather to make the pieces, which were later embellished with stones. They have been used for ceremonial purposes at different times and are recognized as symbols of wealth.
Eventually, silversmiths added loops across the back of a concho to run the leather strap through. This allowed the entire face of the concho to be decorated while the strap stayed on the backside. This was the beginning of the concho belt’s three-phase development.
After this, a strap or bar was soldered onto the front of the concho to run the leather strap through. The strap was usually soldered with silver, copper, or a combination of these metals. This allowed the entire face of the concho, including the design, to be decorated while the strap remained on the back side.
This type of belt is generally narrower than a regular link belt and will slip through the belt loops of most jeans. It is also more adaptable because it can fit various waist sizes and styles using the buckle’s hook fastener on any of the rings between the conchos.
The fine, highly worked museum-quality Navajo or Zuni Hand Made Sterling Silver Concho Belts are truly works of art and highly collectible, seldom sold and worn for ceremonial purposes only. Talented, traditional Native American artists make them out of the finest stones and Sterling Silver.
They are sometimes backed with leather, highlighting the silver work and protecting it from bumps, wear, or bending. Unfortunately, these are a bit more expensive than the cheaper plated belts.
There are several types of conchos, including continuous rows of conchos or spacers that can be in various shapes but traditionally are butterflies. The conchos and the butterflies are backed by leather, highlighting the silver work and protecting the edges from bumping, wear, or bending.
A belt made with silver conchos is a staple in any cowgirl’s closet. This accessory is a great way to add a southwestern style to your outfit, especially with a blanket coat.
A concho belt is also a great way to accentuate your waist. It can add a layer of detail to an otherwise plain outfit and create an attractive look that is sure to stand out in your crowd.
You’ll want to use a leather strap that fits your waist to wear a concho belt. You can find these in most craft stores and online. They’re available in several lengths and widths, so you can choose one that matches your outfit perfectly.
First, you’ll need to punch a hole in the leather portion of your strap. You can use a leather punch or a pair of pliers. You will then need to arrange the conchos evenly around the belt to fit together and connect well.
Another option is to cut off a belt section and slide the conchos closer or farther apart. This will make the belt fit your waist perfectly and give it a perfect look.
If you don’t have a leather punch, you can use a screwdriver and a pair of pliers to do the same thing. Just be careful not to damage the leather or conchos.
Next, you’ll need to thread your strap through the conchos. Depending on the type of backing on your conscious, you may have to slide them a few times until you’ve reached the right position for the buckle.
Then, just slip your belt on, and you’re all set! Alternatively, you can fasten the buckle directly to the strap. This will make the buckle more secure and ensure it won’t loose during use.
You can find conchos in various sizes and colors on 1stDibs, including brown, black, gray, and more. They’re a great way to add a unique touch to your wardrobe, and you can even get them with a silver buckle for a truly authentic look.
Buckles secure two ends of something, such as a strap or belt. They come in various shapes and sizes and can be made from various materials. However, the basic design is usually a frame with a prong that holds the end of the strap. A buckle can also have a chape, a plate attached to the back of the strap to connect it to the buckle.
Traditionally, the buckle was made from bronze or silver. Still, it is now made of various other materials, including plastics like celluloid and nylon. These buckles are commonly used in recreational activities, such as camping, hiking, climbing, scuba diving, and boating.
The first phase of concho belt development involved plain silver discs strung onto a piece of leather. These were then decorated with engraved designs or stamped and edged. They were typically worn on one shoulder or over a bandoleer.
In later years, Navajo silversmiths started to solder loops on the back of the conchos that would hold a leather strap in place. They then began to use stones in their designs, which led to the creation of the classic Navajo Concho belt.
Today, Concho belts can be found in various styles and colors. Various Native American tribes craft them, including the Navajo, Zuni, and Hopi. Some are carved, and others are inlaid with different kinds of stones.
The leather belt portion of the buckle is often extra long and blank (not punched) so that it can be customized to fit a specific waist size. It also allows the conchos to be slid along the leather to position them perfectly.
Another option is a belt with a buckle trim or slide, a buckle without a chape, or prongs. For example, the buckle trim is used to hide unsightly fittings on a dress or skirt.
Using a screwdriver and pliers, loosen the belt loops on the back of the concho and then slide the belt onto your waist. Then, gently squeeze the belt loop with your pliers to secure it.
Here Are Some Tips On How To Wear A Concho Belt:
- Belt placement: Concho belts can be worn at the waist or on the hips, depending on your preference and the style of the belt.
- Outfit pairing: Concho belts can be worn with various outfits, including jeans, skirts, and dresses. They add a unique touch to any outfit and can be used to create a bohemian or Western-inspired look.
- Coordination: When choosing a concho belt, consider the color and style of your outfit. The belt should complement the outfit and not clash with it.
- Accessories: Concho belts can be paired with other Native American-inspired accessories, such as beaded jewelry, leather boots, or fringe bags, to create a cohesive look.
- Layering: Concho belts can be layered over other belts to create a more intricate look. They can also be layered over a long shirt or tunic to create a more bohemian-inspired outfit.
Remember, the key to wearing a concho belt is to have fun and be creative. There are no hard and fast rules, so feel free to experiment with different styles and designs until you find the one that works best for you and your style.