Christian Allaire is a First Nations (Ojibwe) writer, stylist, and editor and currently the fashion and style writer at Vogue. He earned a degree in journalism from Ryerson University and has written for Vogue, Elle, Mr. Porter, Hazlitt, Refinery 29, and other publications. His YA debut, The Power of Style: How Fashion and Beauty Are Being Used To Reclaim Cultures (Annick Press, April 27), combines interviews, photographs, and deep dives into trends to create a picture of the many ways clothing, hairstyles, cosplay, and more can express different facets of one’s identity.
In this interview, Allaire discusses his own fashion inspirations (Harry Styles, among others) and how he is impressed with people who unapologetically commit to their style. He takes us through his own personal aesthetic, which combines the work of indigenous designers with a nod to “sleazy chic” 1970s statement pieces, and the influence of his Ojibwe heritage on his passion for style, from floral imagery to prints and beadwork. He recalls learning about size-restrictive guidelines in the cosplay world, the often-limited range of shades available in most cosmetics, and many other elements at the intersection of style and social justice.
From the Kirkus review: “A celebration of clothing, cultural pride, and fashion activists….With sections dedicated to natural Black hair, gender nonconformity, cosplayers, Indigenous designers, and more, [Allaire] brings fashion colorfully to life with photographs and history lessons….A vibrant read about the connections between fashion, culture, and social justice.”