“My work is centered in the union of street wear fashion and traditional designs and elements.
Carrie Moran McCleary is a Chippewa-Cree and Little Shell Tribal member. Her company, Plains Soul; was founded in 2015 when an empty nest and a day dream collided.
“My work is centered in the union of street wear fashion and traditional designs and elements,” Moran McCleary said. “I really want Native people to wear my fashions to the office or a pow wow, and non-native people to wear these fashions and not fear it is appropriative. So please don’t be shy!”
Moran McCleary lives at Two Leggins on the Crow Reservation, where she raised two amazing children and adores her horses and hens. Her awesomely supportive husband Timothy P. McCleary works at the tribal community college nearby.
“Plains Soul is a family run concern,” Moran McCleary said, “It’s not uncommon for my son Austin to stop by and get roped into deliveries, my husband Tim helps with computer issues and deliveries, and my daughter Katie is a major player helping with both design and marketing.”
Plains Soul is known for upcycling and Indigenizing almost any everyday item, from eye glass cases, to luggage tags. Who wouldn’t want their everyday life to speak to who they are?
“I am the fifth daughter of 11 children, so hand-me-downs were a way of life growing up. But my mom and grandmothers were very creative so I never thought anything of it. I’m just doing what my mothers and grandmothers did before me,” Moran McCleary said. “My designs are very traditional Ojibwa but after spending 30 years among the Apsaalooke/Crow, who I’m honored to call family, I often include their shapes as well. My colors are definitely a blend of the two tribes traditions.”