On a chilly Saturday afternoon, North Texans strutted across the courtyard of AT&T Discovery District dressed in flowing ribbon skirts, round-rim sunglasses, denim and buckskin.
Last weekend marked the inaugural fashion show at the Native American Heritage Month Powwow, hosted by the Inter-Tribal Council of AT&T Employee. About 40 contestants, ranging in age from 3 to in their 60s, competed for prizes like a new S22 phone provided by the fashion show’s co-sponsor Samsung.
Rachel Salinas, national president of the Inter-Tribal Council of AT&T Employees, said the fashion show, which had streetwear and traditional dress categories, was an important addition to the powwow this year because it challenges how people view Native Americans.
“A lot of people have stereotypes of what Native American people look like and what we wear,” she said. “So I think showcasing our fashion and our people will help to break the stereotype and also bring more visibility to our community.”
Salinas, who is Lipan Apache, said the fashion show gives community members an opportunity to represent the unique clothing styles of their tribes. There are 574 federally-recognized tribes in the U.S.
The grand prize winner Juliane Rives, who is Kiowa and Comanche, won the S22 phone after a dance-off and wearing a traditional buckskin dress with yellow, white, red and green colors that represent different parts of her heritage.
Tana Cleamons, who is Chickasaw, took home first place in the streetwear category for her choice of a red ribbon skirt and denim jacket she designed with custom patches to draw attention to the issue of Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women.
In the traditional dress category, Katherine Burr of the Jemez Pueblo tribe of New Mexico won.
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Arts Access is a partnership between The Dallas Morning News and KERA that expands local arts, music and culture coverage through the lens of access and equity.
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Date: November 23, 2022, 12:00 pm