Every industry, from manufacturing to design, is wading into uncharted waters. This article is about fashion, specifically the frustration of indigenous designers as they go up against plagiarism on the runway.
What is Indigenous Fashion?
Indigenous fashion is a term used to describe the traditional clothing and accessories of indigenous people. The clothing is often handmade and features patterns and colors that are unique to each tribe or nation.
Indigenous people have been wearing their traditional clothes for centuries, but in recent years, there has been a resurgence of interest in indigenous fashion. This revival is due in part to the increasing visibility of indigenous people in the media and popular culture.
Indigenous fashion designers are working to create modern takes on traditional clothing. They often use sustainable materials and ethical production practices. Indigenous fashion is about more than just clothes; it’s about celebrating culture and history.
Busting the Myth of Expressed Appropriation
The idea that Indigenous people appropriate their own culture when they engage in fashion design is a myth. This belief is based on the false assumption that Indigenous people are not creative and that they do not have the right to express themselves through fashion.
Indigenous people have been engaged in creative expression for millennia. If anything, it is non-Indigenous people who have appropriated Indigenous culture, often without any understanding or appreciation for its significance.
Indigenous fashion designers are taking back space on the runway and showing the world that they are creative, talented individuals who have a lot to offer. While there may be some dissatisfaction with the current state of affairs, this is only natural when centuries of oppression are being challenged. Ultimately, this is a positive development that will lead to greater visibility and recognition for Indigenous people and their culture.
The Struggle Between Outspoken Artists and Space
As Indigenous people have fought for representation in the fashion industry, some have found success while others continue to face disappointment.
Some outspoken artists, like Patricia Tallman and Jessica Harrison-Hall, have been able to find a place on the runway and in the fashion world. They credit their success to their willingness to be vocal about their experiences as Indigenous people and to fight for visibility.
However, not all Indigenous fashion designers have been as fortunate. Many struggle to find space on the runway or in the industry as a whole. This is often due to a lack of support from the fashion community and a lack of opportunities to showcase their work.
indigenous designers often feel that they need to sacrifice their culture and identity in order to be successful. As a result, many are unsatisfied with the mainstream fashion industry and continue to search for ways to create their own space within it.