July 2nd – Celebrating First Nations art and beading

Hope you had a great weekend. I did manage to get a lil campfire time with my love one of the nights, but mostly it was working. Weekends don’t mean much when you run your own business, especially one that deals so heavily in bridal, and stat holidays are more or less unheard of. But I’m working on a beaded gown that is probably the largest surface area I’ve ever done, and I think it’s going to be spectacular. I might reveal a couple sneak peeks this coming week. I’m also finishing design packages for my few bridal clients I’ve accepted for 2020.

There have been fireworks going off every single evening for hours around my entire house this weekend. Which is cool, I like fireworks. And I want this to be a positive space – BEADS! SEQUINS! SPARKLE! However, those of you who have followed me for any length of time know that I am also pretty politically motivated in my art and life. Canada Day isn’t something I “celebrate”.

It’s a time I reflect and contemplate. I have a lot of privilege because I am white and was born here. I don’t feel proud of that random chance, especially when there are so many people who also live here, whose ancestors were here waaaaaaay before mine, who don’t have a modicum of those privileges. So many don’t even have access to clean water. Or electricity. Or fresh produce. Basic necessities. And who are being murdered with impunity.

An inquiry just released shows Canada guilty of and *still engaging* in genocide. You can be grateful for living here, you can even be proud of aspects of it, but it’s extremely important to not let “well, it’s better than <wherever>” make us complacent. We have a very terrifying election looming, and we are currently one of the only major western countries who does not have a nationalist/racist/fascist in charge of our federal government. Where I live in Ontario, we definitely have one in charge of the provincial government. It’s terrible. I know not all my readers are Canadian – actually most of you aren’t. But as a creative community, as a globe, this affects us.

Be grateful for things you have. But maybe also think about ways we can do better. It would be great to get to a point where we can actually celebrate. I’m not sure pride in one’s country is a particular goal to have; it seems to lead down a weird path. But pride in compassion, community, and a dedication to respecting the humanity of every citizen of a country, be they from ancient heritage, eighth generation immigrant, or brand-spanking new – or fish, mammal, bird. There is a lot to be grateful for, but not if we refuse to protect and care for it.

Invest in First Nations artists and businesses. Stand up for proper land-stewardship.

And with that very serious intro, let us look at the vibrant and amazing First Nations artists that make up this week’s Inspo Round Up.