Runway Recap: Big Sky Indigenous Women in Fashion and Art Symposium & Gala

Our recap of the first of its kind business symposium and accompanying fashion show in Billings, Montana.

The first of its kind business symposium and accompanying fashion show happened this month in Big Sky Country. 

Event planner Cora Chandler organized the event with the idea of connecting Native women together in mind. “It has been an honor to be the coordinator of this event and a blessing to see all these beautiful people take away business tips, friendships, and exposure for their businesses,” Cora said of the event. “Their success is our success!”  

The event featured a business symposium with a lineup of various entrepreneurial and motivational workshops hosted by Native women from throughout the country with over 90 people in attendance at the free business symposium. Well-known fashion designer Bethany Yellowtail along with many business experts shared their expertise and information with attendees.  

The event wrapped up with a gala-style fashion show and a red carpet which included semi-formal fashion designers and vendors. Over 520 people attended the runway gala that featured 11 of Montana’s top Indigenous women designers, 90 Indigenous models, 35 Indigenous vendors, and 9 makeup artists from all over the United States and Canada. 

“Native Max assisted in our overall mission to give our Indigenous women a platform to feature their wearable art, to gather better business practices, network, grow their business, fellowship, and feel their overall power in coming together for an amazing and successful event,” said Cora in an email. “Your organization has inspired us to keep moving forward with overwhelming support from organizations like yours.” 

Cora tells us that the 2nd annual Big Sky Indigenous Women in Fashion and Art Symposium and Gala is already slated to happen in April 2023.


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