Eco Fashion Picks of the Week: Urban Outfitters vs. Navajo Nation, The Eye Has to Travel & DIY Bike Tube Earrings.

Via EcoSalon
on Nov 3, 2011
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Love fashion? Love it even more when it has a green twist? Then you’ll love EcoSalon‘s weekly roundup of eco fashion picks. Enjoy!

Did you hear about the Urban Outfitters/Navajo Nation debacle? Turns out you can’t make money off of exploiting an entire culture. An interview with Sasha Houston Brown who rallied the social media community and got the brand to step down.

Was this your first time calling a company out on using the Navajo name?

Prior to my letter to Urban Outfitters, I had never called out or contacted a company for using a tribal name, but I have experienced racism my entire life and have always taken a stand against it.

The issue at hand is larger than Urban Outfitter’s use of the name of this specific tribal nation – their use of a tribal name is reflective of Western societal treatment of Indigenous peoples. We are seldom brought into the mainstream public sphere (except on occasions such as Thanksgiving, and of course Halloween, when children can still ‘dress up’ as an Indian). Our collective history, vast contributions to the world and tremendous cultural resiliency are frequently trivialized or hidden. Urban Outfitter’s offensive product line is one example of the ongoing cultural commodification and racism we face daily.

The Eye Has to Travel, a newly released book and film, takes a look at Diana Vreeland, the legendary Vogue editor.

Known for her memorable turn of phrase and incredible aphorisms, her legacy is best found in her own words.

Here are a few of my favorites:

Style: All who have it share one thing – Originality.

The only real elegance is in the mind. If you’ve got that, the rest really comes from it.

But you gotta have style. It helps you get down the stairs. It helps you get up in the morning. It’s a way of life. Without it you’re nobody. I’m not talking about lots of clothes.

There’s nothing more boring than narcissism –the tragedy of being totally… me. We’re all capable of it. And we all know examples of it – these beautiful tragedies. Many of them, of course, are mannequins. Mannequins are either divine – or they’re the most boring girls in the world.

Got a few extra punctured bike tubes stashed in a corner somewhere? Turn them into something useful. Earrings perhaps? A complete set of instructions for DIY upcycled tube earrings.


About EcoSalon

EcoSalon is the web's leading conscious culture and fashion publication for women. Featuring style, design, life and culture, the arts, food, sex and relationships, EcoSalon is the first and finest general interest website for the modern green woman.


2 Responses to “Eco Fashion Picks of the Week: Urban Outfitters vs. Navajo Nation, The Eye Has to Travel & DIY Bike Tube Earrings.”

  1. elephantjournal says:

    Annie O I don't know. If they gave homage in the name, ideas are viral, you can't keep them forever. I can understand people getting upset if someone dresses in costume, but to try to hold the cloth, the weave, the colors, the designs forever, it can't be done, and shouldn't be. Ask any million dollar design house, within weeks their stuff is on the fake racks. It's the way the world works. If I do a yoga posture a special way, someone will like it, and they will use it, and sometimes I'll get credit, for a while, but after a time it will be theirs in their mind.

    Stephanie D I have long objected to big business co-opting culture and making millions off it. If we want Navajo, then damnit, buy Navajo! Give your money for those designs to the people who created it and need it most. I do not buy turquoise, native jewelry from anyone but the indigenous people who created it. I do not buy African designs except from Africans who created it and need the money most. Especially in this Global economic climate, lets give our money to the indigenous people who created these designs and artifacts that we love so much and stop enriching big business who've already got their.

  2. elephantjournal says:

    Susi: Yeah, that's the thing. These objects had tacky appropriations of Native American designs and by calling them "Navajo" the company is giving the impression that that's who made them. The other part, that was wildly inappropriate, was wrapping a flask in one of those designs and calling it a Navajo flask. Really disturbing!

    I'm not sure I get it. Are "Kiss me I'm Irish" tee shirts showing s****faced Irish mascots equally offensive? I have no love for conservative-owned Urban, but is there a place for respectful homage to cultures? Is it really better for fashion, art, sports teams etc to just forget about/ignore such history? Enlighten me, if so inspired, I'm a bit daft about this. ~ Way.