Sage Paul has championed Indigenous fashion in Canada for more than a decade. The Toronto-based Dene designer and Indigenous Fashion Arts (IFA) executive’s next mission: breaking down barriers in the global industry. This week, Paul has brought six Indigenous designers from across the country to Milan Fashion Week to showcase their work at the highly regarded trade show WHITE Milano (Feb. 24-27).
“I want our work valued. It’s not a token,” Paul tells The Globe and Mail, while sitting near Toronto’s Harbourfront Centre, where the Indigenous Fashion Arts Festival was held last June. WHITE attended last year’s festival and subsequently signed on to feature a different group of Indigenous Canadians each year until 2025. “WHITE Milano values craftsmanship, quality, luxury and one-of-a-kind pieces, which aligns with the work happening in our community,” explains Paul.
This is Paul’s first time taking a delegation abroad and the first international trade show for