I read a fair amount of fashion blogs, but only recently did I discover the fabulous story and photos over at The Uniform Project. The designer of the now-famous little black dress featured on the site is Eliza Starbuck, who apparently is launching a new line called “Bright Young Things.”
To commemorate the launch, she offered up this project on the blog Ecouterre, “guaranteed to turn heads”. Yes friends, you can now make your very own hipster headdress.
The post offers step-by-step instructions, and I found it hilariously ironic that either Starbuck or Ecoterre reminds you to “just be sure to choose cruelty-free feathers (faux, vintage, or found), rather than pluck the plumage of some hapless bird.” Definitely, worry about the birds, but not the people you may be offending (They are a sustainable fashion site, though, so I’m not totally surprised about the bird reminder).
That’s one weird trend I’ve been noticing with some of the hipster-headdress wearers–many of them are quick to jump on other causes, environmental sustainability, relief for Africa, etc, hinting at some sort of solidarity with those fighting for what’s right…yet they clamp down on the headdress and staunchly defend their “right” to wear it. If someone of a marginalized group tells you, to your face, that what you’re doing is hurtful and offensive, how can you, as an “activist,” still wear it? I don’t get it. But that’s just one of my personal pet peeves with the whole thing.
E. Starbuck: @Margo,thank you for the reminder. I think EVERYONE is aware of stereotypes and what is and isn’t “PC” at this point in time. A handmade headdress (and not the dime store “cowboys and indians” plastic version) is sacred to anyone who wears it and certainly to anyone who makes it.
and then an E.J. Starbuck commented on my hipster headdress post:
I think this point of view is painfully old-fashioned. The Internet has created a melting pot of Ancient, Present, Past, and Future cultures from all around the world. And at this point, everyone is fully aware of what stereotypes are and what “PC” is, and going on about them is only going to perpetuate them. Practice sacred culture, don’t preach it. Making efforts to keep sacred cultures segregated and separated in the name of respect and cultural preservation maybe honorable, but it is quite impossible and impractical. If that were the way, then the spirit of the Native American culture would be long dead, and we know that isn’t true, it’s just evolved. Everyone is connected and everyone is mixed, this is a new tribe of people. A handmade headdress (and not the dime store “cowboys and indians” plastic version) is sacred to anyone who wears it and certainly to anyone who makes it. To limit that sacred experience to Native Americans when people from every part of the planet have been using feathers as decorations on their heads all throughout history is just wrong.
So this is a new argument to me–that creating the headdress yourself makes it “sacred”?
I’ll turn this one over to you, readers, since I want some more voices than just my own on this issue. Thoughts?
Earlier: But Why Can’t I Wear a Hipster Headdress? (for the full breakdown)