Exploring the Inca Empire Through Fashion

For those of you who don’t already know, my day job is in higher education marketing. That’s been my career niche for years now, and I love it so much.

I love talking with highly motivated students and passionate faculty. I love that I’m supporting the wellbeing of my community, and most of all, I love the myriad of educational opportunities that I personally get to partake in because of it (Learning is one of my Clifton AND Values in Action Inventory strengths).

One such opportunity arose from our foreign language department this week! In honor of Hispanic/Latinx Heritage Month, they brought in Gabriela Arslanoglu, a Peruvian fashion designer, to show off some of her works inspired by the Incan Empire.

Arslanoglu is such an interesting person. She is a descendant of one of the founders of the alpaca industry in Peru. One of her parents worked for the Peruvian government as an authority on the industry. She left Peru and moved to Kansas City, where she became a tour guide, and she’s quite the artist!

models showing the designer dresses

Look at these beautiful pieces!! She talked about the Inca princesses as the inspiration, with the bright colors and gold accents. She also had a mind for sustainability. That colorful skirt is naturally dyed, and just about everything is made of wool or, of course, alpaca.

Close-up details on the dresses

Still having those tour guide instincts, she told such stories and tempted all of us to go visit Peru. It’s always been at the top of my travel wish list, for obvious reasons. Some year, I’ll make it there! Of course, hoping to see even more beautiful textiles, like these.

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