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Indigenous model Quannah Chasinghorse is an 'activist' in the fashion world, celebrates native culture and styles

Phoenix Fashion Week’s closing collection was designed by Norma Baker Flying-Horse of Red Berry Woman. It was a celebration of native culture and styles, both traditional and contemporary. 

Indigenous model Quannah Chasinghorse said she often acts as an activist in the high-fashion world.

“I’ve been able to get a lot of brands to question their sustainability practices and their cultural appropriation,” Chasinghorse said. “I’ve been able to really get these designers to do the right thing and collaborate with Native artists and educate the passionate fans on how important it is to stay authentic and make sure that what they're representing is the right thing instead of stealing our culture and designs.” 

Chasinghorse emphasizes her pride that her part in the industry is making positive change. She closed the show in a traditional design that she was given to keep by Flying-Horse, a special edition to her wardrobe. 

“I feel very very honored because this is my first time wearing a traditional Lakota dress because I’m Lakota, but I grew up with my Alaskan Native culture, and am very close to my Alaskan Native side,” Chasinghorse said. 

“The significance and power that comes within the outfit is honestly indescribable, I’m so honored… that I was able to be a part of her story.” 

During Red Berry Woman’s Collection, each model in a traditional look would stand next to a model in a modern look as they passed each other on the stage, showing their timelessness as a brand. 

Cuban native and Teen Universe Arizona winner Amys Napoles stunned the crowd in a blue gown detailing and a matching patterned clutch bag both designed by Red Berry Woman. 

“That look was my favorite because of the culture,” she said. Napoles described the overall energy as truly special to everyone who took part in it.

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