Choosing Between Faux Fur and Real Fur (9/15/2021) - By Dana Bowen It’s an age-old question—or at least, a 50-year-old debate. What’s better for the planet—real or faux fur? The answer you’ll get may vary greatly depending on who you’re asking and what part of Canada they're from. For example, many southerners are rejoicing over Canada Goose’s decision to eradicate the use of all… Continue Reading
How Europe’s ban on seal products turned frontier communities into pariahs (9/9/2021) - Danita Catherine Burke, University of Southern Denmark In the 1970s, a sustained campaign convinced much of the world that protesters were saving cuddly seals from murderous killers near the Arctic Circle. Before long, people around the world became accustomed to seeing images of hunters with clubs, looming over a fluffy white-harp seal pups.Europe was the primary market for seal products… Continue Reading
Indigenous, First Nations, Inuit and Métis – learning more about Canada’s First Peoples (8/23/2021) - It is important to take time to learn more about Indigenous history and culture. The Indigenous peoples have lived on this land for thousands of years, long before Europeans ever explored these shores. This blog simply opens the door for you to learn more about the original peoples of Turtle Island and encourages you to… Continue Reading
Seal skin, Beading and Inuit Patterns (8/18/2021) - Beads and seal skin When early European explorers arrived in Canada’s North, they introduced the Inuit seamstresses to brightly coloured glass beads that were known as sapangaq or ‘precious stone’. These beads became a highly desired trade item between the Europeans and the Inuit. The Inuit women used these beads to adorn themselves especially their seal skin… Continue Reading
Shopping for Seal Pelts? (8/7/2021) - Buying seal pelts in Canada is probably easier than anywhere else in the world, but if it's your first time, there are a couple of things you should know. So let's take the mystery out of it.   First, let's look at what's available. Four species of seal are harvested in Canada: harp, grey, hooded… Continue Reading
The Qulliq – a Life Source (6/25/2021) - The Qulliq - the traditional Inuit seal oil lamp I first experienced the lighting of the Qulliq when I was traveling with Inuit designers throughout Europe. We were in Mandallen, Norway, where the Inuit designers and European designers were collaboratively working on the creation of seal skin products. Before the first morning session began, well… Continue Reading
Made in and Proudly Indigenous Crafts & Designs celebrate Indigenous Canadian designers by showcasing their fashion creations in seal fur and leather (6/23/2021) - Montreal, June 8, 2021 - Maison Made in is pleased to partner for the very first time with Canadian Seal Products to promote and celebrate authentic seal products created by Indigenous peoples for generations. The influencer campaign for this collaboration has just kicked off, with the recognition that June is National Indigenous History Month in… Continue Reading
Indigenous Fashion: Two Canadian Designers Tell Us About Their Creations (6/22/2021) - They are both initially from the Great Canadian North, and proud of their roots, the clothing and fashion accessories they create are inspired by Innu traditions while being undeniably modern. Learn more about May Ningeongan, based in Nunavut, and Erica Lugt, living in Northwest Territories, about their inspirations, their artistic approaches and their unique creative… Continue Reading
Seal Skin Fashion – Inuit Designers creating Fashion Forward Designs for Men (6/11/2021) - Seal skin clothing for men is fast becoming a fashion statement. Men may choose to wear seal skin to fight the weather elements but today, Indigenous designers are also creating men’s clothing lines that add style and uniqueness to men’s wardrobes including dress shoes, vests, blazers, jackets and more! Inuit designer, Nicole Camphaug is known… Continue Reading
Ringed seal skin @designsbyoolootie 3 Can we buy seal fur products in Europe? (5/29/2021) - The answer is YES! You can find below more information regarding the export of Canadian Indigenous Seal Fur products to the European Union (EU). Europe Export Requirements When a seal product is being introduced on the EU market under the Inuit and other Indigenous communities exception, it must be accompanied by an original attesting document… Continue Reading
Indigenous Art: 10 Inspiring Canadian Women Artists (5/26/2021) - Their history, but also their families and communities’ history, permeate their artistic process and pave the way for their art. A creative, singular and often committed art, in which tradition and modernity join hands to combine the past, the present and the future. Portraits of 10 local native creators, whose art deserves to be in… Continue Reading
Sealskin Clothing: An All-female Inuit Tradition (5/11/2021) - The transformation of seal fur into clothing and accessories is an essential activity for the economic survival of the Indigenous people living in the circumpolar region in Canada (but also in Greenland, Russia and Alaska, in the United States). But beyond fashion, it is also a practice that perpetuates the spiritual and cultural traditions dear… Continue Reading
Tattoos & Seals – an Inuit Woman’s tradition (4/21/2021) - Inuit Tattoos - Revitalization of an Inuit Woman’s tradition The first time I saw an Inuit tattoo was when I travelled to Europe on a mission with Inuit crafters to promote seal skin products.   The women proudly wear these traditional tattoos and I was intrigued to learn more about their significance and history. I was… Continue Reading
The “Amauti”: much more than just a seal parka (4/9/2021) - The Inuit Amauti - The Sealskin Parka - Then and Now The Amauti is so much more than just a parka. Made from seal skin or caribou, the parka was made to protect the Inuit from the northern elements.  They were worn traditionally by women to carry their babies but fathers or male caregivers could… Continue Reading
Traditional Inuit Preparation of Seal Skins (3/26/2021) - Throughout history, the seal has been vital to the Inuit way of life providing food, shelter and clothing.  Men, women and children all have a role in preparing the seal after the hunt for its many uses. After The Seal is Harvested… After seals are harvested and are skinned by the hunter, Inuit women move… Continue Reading
Proudly Indigenous Crafts & Designs (PIC&D) What are Kamiks and how are they made? (3/8/2021) - Kamiks - the traditional Seal Skin and Caribou boots of the Inuit I will always remember the first time I saw “kamiks”. They were made by Mona Netser, a traditional sealskin seamstress and designer from Coral Harbour, Nunavut. We were in Estonia where she was giving a workshop to Estonian artists on traditional Inuit seal… Continue Reading
Proudly Indigenous Crafts & Designs (PIC&D) XpoNorth Presentation from Janelle Kennedy (15) When did seal fur become popular? (2/22/2021) - A 4000 years old tradition Traditional Inuit clothing was designed out of necessity — to survive the harsh climate that was a stark reality for the Inuit people. The women, knowing it was essential to keep their community warm and protected from the elements made coats, trousers, mittens and boots. These articles were made mostly… Continue Reading
Proudly Indigenous Crafts & Designs (PIC&D) What is the Ulu used for? (2/15/2021) - What is an Ulu? When I travelled to Europe with Inuit crafters, I quickly learned the importance of a unique tool I had never seen before, the ulu, a beautifully shaped all purpose knife. A beautiful handle of bone, antler or wood (sometimes painted with beautiful designs), paired with a unique blade of metal (years… Continue Reading
Proudly Indigenous Crafts & Designs (PIC&D) Sealing, a Blue Activity? (1/15/2021) - Sealing, a Blue Activity?   According to the World Bank, the "Blue Economy" is the "sustainable use of ocean resources for economic growth, improved livelihoods, and jobs while preserving the health of ocean ecosystem." Seal products are the perfect example of a Blue Activity.  In addition to provide food for local human consumption, sealing allows Northern Indigenous communities to take part in… Continue Reading
Proudly Indigenous Crafts & Designs (PIC&D) People of the Seal People of the Seal (1/12/2021) - Canadian Inuit and other Indigenous communities have a deep sealing tradition. Seals have long provided a consistent source of densely nutritious meat. The pelts are used for clothing and shelter. Seal oil is consumed and used a source of fuel and light. The seal hunt was and is a cultural cornerstone for many residents of… Continue Reading
Proudly Indigenous Crafts & Designs (PIC&D) Inuujaq Leslie Fredlund Inuujaq Leslie Fredlund’s Maybe Somewhere grows despite launching just before pandemic (8/13/2020) - When Rankin Inlet’s Inuujaq Leslie Fredlund decided she was going to open her store selling Indigenous-made products at the beginning of 2020, she knew there would be challenges ahead. But not even she could have expected a global pandemic that would bring the local economy to a grinding halt. “It was the summer of 2019… Continue Reading
Julie-Alivaktuk-Pikulu Designs-scaled Pikulu Designs (5/28/2020) - Julie Alivaktuk (Pikulu Designs) is a contemporary seamstress, working primarily in hand-made seal skin products. From Pangnirtung, Nunavut, Julie’s work weaves the beauty of her natural surroundings with modern design to create thoughtful and unique pieces. Working alongside her mother from a young age, Julie’s practice remains intricately rooted in family tradition and culture. A… Continue Reading
Seal Fur & Seal Skin Products Concordia artist-in-residence builds a sealskin spacesuit (4/24/2019) - When Jesse Tungilik was a child, his mother made him traditional caribou hunting clothes. While wearing the bulky, heavy handmade outfit, he often imagined that he was in a spacesuit. “That memory stuck with me when I heard about this opportunity here at Concordia, with its future-themed focus, and the two ideas met in the… Continue Reading