- By Tamara Ikenberg
Fashion and film are the buzzwords this weekend and next week in Indian Country.
From an online shopping opportunity to get a piece of ready-to-wear work from an in-demand Indigenous designer, to a fluorescent Montana fashion show shining a light on women’s health, to a Santa Fe screening of a revenge thriller set on a Canadian reserve, your chances to get all dressed up with somewhere to go have never looked better.
Take a hot minute to review Native News Online’s event guide, and mix and match your own style and screen fix.
Launch of The Dakota Oyáte Ready To Wear Collection
WHEN: Friday, Sept.10, at 1 p.m. CST
What do you declare when your ribbon dress is so poofy, rich and regal that it makes you feel like a modern-day Indigenous Marie Antoinette?
How about: “Let them eat frybread.”
The punchline and the poof are provided by Hidatsa, Dakota Sioux and Assiniboine designer Norma Baker -Flying Horse of Red Berry Woman.
A dazzling and decadent puff-sleeved, ribbon dress is one of the seven looks comprising the designer’s new Dakota Oyáte Collection, which launches this weekend on her website. Blooming with brightly colored skirts, blouses, dresses and t-shirts integrating contemporary and Indigenous chic, the collection pieces are perfect for both special events or everyday dressing
“This is my first ready to wear collection and although small, has huge meaning for me as a Native woman entrepreneur,” said Flying-Horse, who previously focused on custom-designed couture for clients including attendees at multiple major awards shows, including the Grammys and Academy Awards, as well as Miss Indian World Cheyenne Brady (Sac and Fox, Cheyenne, Tonkawa) and 2015 Miss Universe, actress and activist Ashley Callingbull (Cree).
“My whole thing going into (fashion) was just to create beautiful clothing and to create something that people wanted to wear,” Baker-Flying Horse told Tribal Business News. “It started out with individualized customers and now it’s growing to a whole on-demand thing. I (had) a lot of people constantly asking me to design ready-to-wear because they would love to buy something that isn’t custom.”
The impetus for the new collection is grounded in a deep ancestral connection.
“The Dakota Oyáte Collection is inspired by my Dakota Sioux bloodlines,” Baker- Flying Horse said in a statement. She added that her collection reflects the influence of her grandmother, the late Beverly Walking Eagle, who was Dakota Sioux, and spoke the tribe’s language fluently.
“The teaching she gave me on how to use my Dakota designs are what I apply to my Native Fashions today. It’s her talent and her teachings I want to honor with this collection.”
Further demonstrating the designer’s passion for Indigenous authenticity and pride, all of the collection’s promotional materials star models who are members and residents of the Fort Peck Indian Reservation in Montana.
American Indian Film Institute Present a Special Drive-In Showcase
WHEN: Friday, Sept. 10, 7:45 p.m.
WHERE: Motorama at the Downs Santa Fe, 27475 W. Frontage Rd., Santa Fe, NM. Tickets are $2- $10. Purchase here.
In the killer thriller “Dance Me Outside,” four friends on the Kidabanesee Reserve in Canada find the dead body of a female acquaintance, and enlist the help of a recently paroled pal to plot revenge on her murderer.
The 1994 movie from Canadian director Bruce McDonald will be screened this weekend in Santa Fe at a drive-in showcase presented by the American Indian Film Institute (AIFI).
“Dance Me Outside” won an AIFI Eagle Spirit Award, and stars Ryan Black, Adam Beach, Jennifer Podemski, Tamara Podemski, and Michael Greyeyes, who plays casino CEO Terry Thomas on the Peacock TV hit “Rutherford Falls.”
In addition to the screening, the evening will also include an art and food market, and a short film program curated by AIFI. Gates open at 6:30 p.m. and attendees are advised to arrive early for the market.
The 32nd Annual Denver Art Museum Friendship Powwow and American Indian Cultural Celebration
WHEN: Sunday, Sept. 12, 11 a.m.–5 p.m.
For a winning combo of camaraderie, dance competitions, food and art, check out the 32nd Annual Denver Art Museum Friendship Powwow either online or in-person.
The event, which celebrates the diverse Indigenous communities across Denver and the Front Range, is free for all to attend
Grand Entry begins at 12 p.m., and will be followed by a slew of dance competitions, including jingle, traditional, fancy and grass, for everyone from Tiny Tots to Golden Age. .
For more information, visit www.denverartmuseum.org.
Honor Our Legacy Fashion Show and Women’s Health Fair
WHEN: Friday, Sept. 17, 5 pm. - 10 p.m.
The Rocky Boy Reservation’s signature style showcase is returning to the runway live and in-person, after last year’s all-virtual installment.
The Honor Our Legacy Fashion Show, founded and run by Chippewa Cree designer Rebekah Jarvey, is going back in time for a Neon '80s-themed spectacular complemented with a women’s health component.
On the fashion front, this year’s featured designers are Elias Jade Not Afraid (Crow) who has been spotlighted repeatedly in Vogue, and whose beaded accessories adorned Secretary of the Interior Deb Haaland in this year’s August issue of InStyle, JG Indie (Navajo) who meshes Indigenous and urban style, and Sage Mountainflower (Ohkay Owingeh, Taos Pueblo, Navajo), whose elegant jewelry and apparel mirror the landscape and Indigenous culture of the southwest.
In addition to the runway show, presenters from The Rocky Boy Health Center’s Women’s Health Fair will be on hand to offer information on women’s health issues.
“The women's health fair coordinator and I thought combining the health fair and the fashion show would be a great way to start easing back into in-person events,” Jarvey told Native News Online. “Women are the backbone of our families and the pandemic put a lot more stress and pain on them. Having a night of fun and information on women's health is essential to keep the backbone of our tribe strong.”
The event also includes plenty of opportunities for the non-model community to strut their style in an array of competitions keeping with the retro theme, including an 80s Big Hair Contest, and Best-Dressed 80s Style.
And as always, the show will have punches of Powwow culture, accentuated by announcers Russell Standing Rock and Thomas Limberhand, host drum Montana Cree, and Color Guard American Legion Post 67.
Grand Valley American Indian Lodge 60th Annual Traditional Powwow
WHEN: Saturday, Sept 11 - Grand Entry at 1 pm and 6:30 pm; Sunday, Sept. 12 - Grand Entry at 12 noon
WHERE: Riverside Park, Monroe Ave. N.W., Grand Rapids, Mich.
After being canceled last year due to the Covid-19 pandemic, the Grand Valley Indian Lodge is excited about this year's event that brings dancers from the Great Lakes region into Grand Rapids. Native American food fare will be available. Facial masks are strong recommended.
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