January 8, 2008

Tuesday Trends: Tribal Touches

Tribal Touches is the urban adoption of native / tribal / folk art and craft styles. Not to be confused with the look Style.com refers to as "Global Exchange" which is more an adoption and combination of Eastern looks and silhouettes.

I think this look came about in a number of ways:
1. as the evolution of the Lohan-Olsen approved boho style
2. the reemergence of worldwide interest in environmentalism (Captain Planet was my childhood champion of eco-friendly living. Until An Inconvenient Truth there was no environmental superhero - cartoon or otherwise)
3. a reflection of our global culture. Our community now expands past our town limits and our national borders.

Ok. Maybe I am making this trend to be more meaningful and sociological than what it is. Still, it's a look I am really loving at the moment. Above are a few of my favourite (and coveted items) that fit in with the tribal-global look:

This postcard, one of a series called "The Golden North", by clevernettle* really encompasses the mood of the look for me.
The Golden North invokes a cold yet ornate world where girls are bundled up in fanciful furs and must protect themselves with only their handbound arrows powered by traditional ritual feather magic.
I've seen hair feathers featured in a number of places. I really like this felt feather barrette from the candy thief. It is a stylish take on a popular look. Recently I've become obsessed with finding the perfect embroidered folk dress like this one from mamastone vintage (sold, but you can find plenty elsewhere). I love the folk look of the dress, the bright colors, and the loose shape. A perfect spring/summer look.

The macramé look dress and feather necklace are by the amazing
machine who currently sells her items in San Francisco boutiques like The Painted Bird, Minnie Wilde and The Pretty Penny. I guess I also have a feather fetish because I really like the look of this six feather hand beaded bracelet. One company that has the whole global feel down is Philadelphia's MoonblooD. From ancient Egypt to the Mayan temples, their line of hand-dyed t-shirts for men and women illustrates their "love of tribal textiles and travel". Of course, no look is complete without the fringed scarf. I like the ones available at Urban Outfitters, but you can find equally wonderful scarves at the local thrift shops. Last but not least is a paper cut bear with multi colored paper feathers from the much adored essimar whose work has been featured all over.

I know I probably over-hyped this trend a bit, but I really love the mood and aesthetic of these pieces. I think it is a look that everyone can adopt small bits of and incorporate into their own personal style.

*Anja also has a great blog, clevernettle, where she showcases her vintage finds (and sales) in addition to current projects. It is one of my personal favourites and is always a good read.