Minority Report

June 10, 2009

Hey there loyal blog readers, if you’re still out there…

SWBA is back! We’ve been on quite a hiatus as our respective extra-curriculars have consumed all and any free time. Excuses, excuses. But I come to you now with more material than ever from this side of the world, having gathered images of patterns and colors and people and cultures everywhere between Buenos Aires and Bangkok.

What prompted the revival of this blog were some fantastic photos (because of the subject, as opposed to the photographer) I took whilst traveling around the ethnic minority villages of Northern Vietnam- the most inspiring ethnic-minority-tribal-dressing I have encountered thus far:

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Indigo clad in layers upon layers of geometrically-cut vests, shawls and skirts, adorned with engraved silver earrings, necklaces and hairpieces, accessorized with flourescent graphically woven patterns paying homage to tribal heritage in the form of arm bands and waist belts, the H’Mong ethnic minority women are a sight to see, dressed impeccably from head to toe.

a gathering of woven H'mong patterns

a gathering of woven H'mong patterns

It’s a wonder that they take the time and energy every morning to dress themselves to the nines. For them, I suppose, it’s not so much a fashion statement (as such effort is only put forth in the western world to dress to impress) but a traditional way of life.

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It’s really incredible to see people dress this way in this modern day and age; these women look fabulous and always will, economic crisis or not. Once in awe of designers such as Dries Van Noten and Matthew Williamson, who love incorporating ethnic influences into their shows, I now almost feel like they are ripping off the designs of these small ethnic tribes.

And now let’s hope to hear from my cohort across the Pacific about the summa day and summa night styles in the Big Apple…

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