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Best Australian Indigenous Fashion Designers in 2021

There is no denying the fact that “Indigenous fashion is the future”. The Australian fashion industry is greatly inspired by novelty and heritage. With the majority of the classic trends making a comeback, the overlooked indigenous fashion is back in style. 

Today, Australians are more open to embracing the oldest fashion traditions. Considering their interest in tradition, major Australian brands are holding exhibitions showcasing the First Nation fashion designs. Indigenous artists are getting more recognition than ever before. Several famous photographers are working with indigenous artists to bring back their long-lost heritage to life. 

The Representation Of Indigenous Culture In Mainstream Fashion Industry:

The launch of National Indigenous Fashion awards has paved way for better representation of indigenous artists and designers. More mainstream brands are willing to collaborate with indigenous artists through magazine photoshoot and ramp walks. The establishment of First Nation Fashion and Design is also a big step ahead to promote representation of the oldest Australian traditions in the Fashion industry. 

In this article, we are going to share some of the well-known and best indigenous fashion designers of 2021. So without further ado, let’s get to the details. 

The Best Indigenous Fashion Designers:

Following is the list of best indigenous fashion designers who need more recognition:

1. Emily Doolah – Kara Lar Wali:

Emily Doolah links the past to the present through art. She focuses on fusing old traditions with modern fashion trends while maintaining a cultural dialogue. Her knowledge of indigenous heritage reflects through each of the pieces she designs. 

Her work is inspired by traditional practices that have been passed on to her by her ancestors. She tries to represent her cultural identity that has been refined, nurtured, and fused with popular culture. Her designs speak for her land, community, and people. 

Her craft is a means to preserve and educate people about the beauty of indigenous culture. She has collaborated with FNFD to revitalize the traditional weaving practice to meet mainstream fashion standards. Her work is being acknowledged and appreciated worldwide.

2. Shannon Brett - Lore

Shannon Brett designs clothes she believes she will be comfortable in. she knows how to create a tailored look with classic cuts and a curvaceously sexy touch. Being brought up in the Gurang Gurang, Wakka Wakka, and Budjula regions in Queensland, this indigenous artist has collaborated with several art centers to create unique pieces that speak her cultural identity. 

She believes in being honest and respectful to the community whose culture she is trying to exhibit through her work. Her art not only represents her as an indigenous designer but also the region she sources her fabric from.

3. NORTH – A Group Of Indigenous Designers

NORTH is an indigenous design label that collaborates with both art centers and indigenous communities to design high-quality aesthetic pieces. The fabric used by this brand is also sourced and manufactured by aboriginal artists. 

From prints to fabrics and patterns, everything is tonal, intricate and a true representation of the aboriginal culture. Each of the designs is available in a variety of cuts. This brand also designs home textiles. NORTH is a socially responsible corporate entity and plays its part in minimizing the impact of human activities on the environment.

This aboriginal brand also takes pride in being a member of the Indigenous Art Code of Ethics. It plays its part in making sure that every art and money transaction benefits the aboriginal artists. 

4. Regina Jones - Ginny’s Girl Gang:

Regina Jones is a Gamilaraay woman. Her vision is to depict her cultural identity through the pieces she designs. She wants to empower indigenous communities and represent her culture through the fusion of aboriginal heritage and modern fashion trends. 

She brands leather and denim jackets with powerful statements that empower and acknowledge the aboriginal communities. Her motto is to design pieces that allow her consumers to pay home to their aboriginal heritage.

According to her being an indigenous Australian designer, she wants to stay true to her identity while keeping pace with various worlds she has to walk through. She loves her culture and wants it to be always represented. 

She believes, working in modern spaces she has to be responsible for her culture, her identity, and her ancestors. Regina makes a cultural statement through her jackets. 

5. Waringarri Arts:

Waringarri Arts is not an individual designer but an art center. It has been providing a platform for aboriginal artists to promote their culture and creativity for over 40 years. This art center was founded in the 1970s. It was the first art center which is owned by the Indigenous community in the Kimberly region. It also takes pride in being one of the oldest art centers that have been operating in Australia.

According to the owner, this space is alive and growing. Waringarri art center celebrates the originality and beauty of the Miriwoong culture.  It provides over 100 aboriginal artists the opportunity to express their cultural identity through their designs. These artists include textile designers, painters, printmakers, sculptors, woodcarvers, boab engravers, and more.

This art center showcases the best works from the Waringarri collection in its art studios, Dawang Gallery, and landscaped garden. It also houses multimedia that features aboriginal Miriwoong culture and its richness for the visitors as well as the community. To provide visitors a true cultural experience, cultural performances and tours are held which offer a deep insight into the indigenous culture. 

Wrapping up!

People from all cultures want to sport clothes that reflect their cultural identity. Indigenous Australians are no exception. They want representation in the mainstream fashion industry. Indigenous artwork is getting more recognition with time. More aboriginal artists are being recognized and appreciated. 

Today various events, solely dedicated to celebrating indigenous fashion are organized. These events provide artists the opportunity to share their creative work based on their heritage with the world. The above-mentioned designers are making a difference in the fashion world by fusing their cultural identity with the latest fashion trends. 

So check them out if you are looking for new pieces to sport this season.

Published on: April 06, 2021

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