When Monserratt brought up the topic of global fabrics and indigenous textiles, I was STOKED for the series. I have always loved and admired traditional styles and textiles from other cultures, but one question always scratches at the back of my brain and prevents me from buying these things: where is the line between appreciating a culture and appropriating it?

During my freshman year of college, we were all required to take a freshman seminar that taught us study skills via a topic of interest. I ended up in a class on Black people in film. The most memorable moment of that class for me was presenting a scrapbook of the semester, and there was a Halloween picture of an acquaintance who was wearing a serape poncho and sombrero. The teacher stopped me mid-presentation and said “It’s NEVER okay to dress up like a... [read more]