After a two-year COVID-19 pandemic hiatus, Vancouver Indigenous Fashion Week held its third edition, and a Snuneymuxw First Nation fashion company returned to walk the runway.
Sisters Aunalee Boyd-Good and Sophia Seward-Good of Ay Lelum – The Good House of Design, showcased their collection on Dec. 1 for ‘Spirit of the West Coast’ where designs with a “signature West Coast spirit” were celebrated.
“It was amazing, a really beautiful experience to watch so many different cultures come together and work together and showcase many styles of art,” Seward-Good said. “It was really nice to be invited and be a part of that.”
She said the collection shown in Vancouver had many of the same pieces shown earlier this year when the design house debuted its work in New York City for the city’s fashion week in September.
The collection, titled Transformation, showcased and exemplified “walking through the lives of a modern-day, multi-generational Coast Salish family from Snuneymuxw.”
For the show New York show, Boyd-Good said they favoured fabrics with iridescent or metallic qualities that would change in different light or when viewed from a different perspective. Artwork designer Joel Good said every piece of artwork design that gets put on clothing for his sisters comes from one of his own original traditional Coast Salish paintings.
Seward-Good said a few new pieces were created for the Vancouver show as well, using the same material, including a new wool multicoloured print chiffon cape.
She also said that while they hired several of the same models as they had in the Big Apple earlier this year, they were mindful that those models did not wear the same outfits as before.
Ay Lelum was also recently featured by Vogue magazine as one of the ‘11 designers to know from Vancouver Indigenous Fashion Week’ in late November.
Her children, unfortunately, did not participate in the walk earlier this month.
“However, I did feel like secretly our kids were there. We had a young man who’s 18 years old that modelled one of the vests that my son had worn… Although my boys weren’t there, it was kind of like we were blessed with boys that felt like family boys,” she said.
As well as showcasing, Ay Lelum were vendors at the five-day long affair, along with dozens of other Indigenous powerhouse fashion companies.
Their work can also be spotted at the Beban Park social centre for the upcoming Sum̓sháthut (Sun) Festival on Dec. 17 in the trading post marketplace.
The design company has also recently opened their gallery, studio and design house on Snuneymuxw First Nation at 1380B Raines Rd., which is open Fridays and Saturdays, or by appointment.