The Start Sparks has the opportunity to work with individual designers to showcase all of the effort that goes into their fashion. Start Sparks was given an identity by Elder Roy Bear Chief in Blackfoot: “Apaat tsi kaan sa kiiks,” translated roughly to English as “the ones who create sparks.”
That became the Sparks team’s objective: To start sparks of inspiration, creativity, conversation and reconciliation.
In order to do this, Start Sparks invited Trip Charbs, to the Mount Royal Main Street atelier to teach his craft to anyone willing to learn. Everyone came to his booth: Indigenous, non-indigenous, students, staff, and even Paul Brandt! However, at the table, everyone had something in common: they were beginner beaders. Start Sparks had people who only “had a few minutes to spare” stay for hours working on their projects.
As Trip Charbs himself said, “reconciliation doesn’t happen when the past gets acknowledged; it’s when we begin working together towards common goals. That’s when reconciliation happens.”
Start Sparks had a chance to enjoy our creativity and experienced all the work that goes into traditional beading techniques first-hand. Most importantly, people started talking about Indigenous issues that are still unresolved today. Stark Sparks aim to have sparked enough conversation to create awareness of Otahpiaaki and its mission.