April 16, 2010

Article | Glacsy in Reznet

An oldie but a goodie!:
An old Reznet Featured Article from 2008 - but still interesting....

Glacsy Clothes Redefine Native Fashion
December 8, 2008
By Alyssa Kelly

Tionne Linder was once again lost in sketching fashion designs when her husband, Ray Linder, suggested she take her artwork a step further by creating clothing. "I didn't know how to sew at the time," Linder recalled. "But I tried out a few outfits and they turned out nice."

The couple began brainstorming business ideas to put Linder's talent to best use. Using her previous work in photography and makeup artistry, the couple decided to explore several aspects of the fashion industry. "The ideas just came to us and our business seemed clear," Linder said.

Because the business ideas "seemed clear," Linder, a member of the Navajo Nation, chose to name her company Glacsy (pronounced glass-see), which she says translates to "clarity or to gain a clear understanding."

What began as vibrant sketches in 2005 has blossomed into a multifaceted fashion company. Through its apparel, accessories and model management, Linder says Glacsy brings an American Indian perspective to the world of fashion. "Just being Native American in the fashion industry is powerful in itself," she said. "We are opening the doors for others to follow."

What is Native American fashion?

While Native American designers are often known to channel tribally specific or traditional style in their work, Linder says her designs reflect a worldly influence. "My clothes have some Native influences but it's also very modern in today's fashion," she said. "I find inspiration from everyday life ... all walks of life."

Linder often experiments with traditional items used in Native American fashion such as beadwork, feathers or buckskin, but she also enjoys creating modern designs such as dresses, halter tops and business suits. Because of this, she says, she has faced scrutiny from people who have said her work "wasn't Native."

"I've discovered that being Native and in fashion doesn't mean that your designs will be Native style," said Linder. "No matter how my designs turn out, I believe they all have a Native touch because they were created by me, and I am a Native."

For her fall and winter fashion line, Linder has been experimenting with rich colors and fabrics such as chocolate, deep green, satin and cashmere. "One trend that works for this season, that I haven't seen a lot of people wearing are leg warmers," said Linder. "So that will be a big part of my collection. They can be worn over jeans and boots."

In the future, Linder hopes the Glacsy clothing line will expand to accommodate all ages, ethnic groups and genders. She plans to create a boutique which will be followed by mass production of her designs. "We really strive to make others feel comfortable and confident when they wear our clothes," said Linder. "I truly believe everyone is beautiful in their own way."

Redefining the image of beauty

True to the belief that "everyone is beautiful in their own way," the Glacsy modeling agency represents a variety of models ranging from 5-feet-2 and up, as well as fit to plus sizes. With the help of modeling director Jessica Dennis, the agency has been involved in numerous fashion shows and has worked with companies that include JC Penney, Anchor Blue and the Native Talent Network.

"I think Glacsy has its own spin on fashion," said model Dinnelle Taliman. "I love the models because all of them have a unique vibe and positive energy. Glacsy allows plus-size women to look just as good as skinny runway models."

Based in Cornfields, Ariz., the Glacsy modeling agency gives its clients the opportunity to work in runway, editorial, calendar and commercial modeling. When searching for new talent, the agency has the following criteria: "Passionate individuals who are confident, dedicated, and open minded."

Taliman says her work with the agency has opened new opportunities for her. "I've gotten to meet a lot of new and well-known people," she said. "I've collaborated with many talented fashion designers, and I've done shows on and off the Navajo Nation. I've also built a unique and diverse portfolio."

When hard work pays off

Whether Glacsy is dressing the world or changing its views on beauty, the company is making an impact on the Native American image, which Linder believes to be positive: "We have been showing the individuality of Native people and we're getting positive responses," she said.

With creativity and hard work, Glacsy has reached its goals, but Linder believes that is just the beginning. "I live and breathe fashion, so every day is like a runway for me," she said. "I love this industry and everything that comes with it. So this company is going to grow beyond even my expectations and it's because hard work pays off."

Alyssa Kelly, Pend d'Oreille, attends Salish Kootenai College in Pablo, Mont. She is a former reporter for the Char-koosta, the tribal newspaper of the Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes on the Flathead Indian Reservation.

Read original article here http://www.reznetnews.org/multimedia/slideshow/glacsy-clothes-redefine-native-fashion-26620