Whitehorse Daily Star

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VERSATILE TALENTS – Aside from modeling, Roberts has been performing with the Selkirk Spirit Dancers since 2014. Photo by JIM PETELSKI

Yukon model to walk the runway in Denver

A Pelly Crossing woman is heading to Colorado to strut her stuff in a First Nations fashion show.

By Emily Blake on March 17, 2017

A Pelly Crossing woman is heading to Colorado to strut her stuff in a First Nations fashion show.

Rebecca Roberts, a Selkirk First Nation woman, will walk the runway for the second time in the Native Fashion in the City show in Denver later this month.

“I am proud to be a strong, confident native woman; it shows in my photos and when I walk the runway,” she told the Star recently.

The born-and-raised Yukoner is one of two Canadian models who donned famous First Nation designers’ clothing on the catwalk last year. The other woman was born in Ontario but moved to Los Angeles at a young age.

“It was scary but exciting at the same time,” Roberts said of her experience last year.

Inspired by a childhood dream, she started modeling in 2015 at the Adäka Fashion Show “Da Ze Tsan” in Whitehorse. She has since modeled for photographers all over the Yukon.

As a mother of five, she says she wants to be a role model for younger generations.

“I wanted to inspire and motivate and show them that your hard work and dedication can go somewhere,” she said.

While her children are proud of her work, Roberts said she’s still “just Mom” to them.

“People tell them that I’m famous and they’re like, ‘no, that’s my mom,’” she said.

“They think it’s cool when they see my photos; it’s amazing to them; they’re just in awe. And my four-year-old daughter is like, ‘you look so beautiful, Mom.’”

She has also received support from the community and through her Facebook page.

“Love and support, that’s all I’ve been getting and that’s what I’m rising with,” she said.

“I’m very modest in a way when it comes to all of this, but I’m loving all the support, all the love and the kindness when I post my pictures.”

And she has no plans of stopping.

“I feed off that positivity; it makes me want to do more, and I’m going to. I’m going to keep doing this as long as I can.”

Aside from modeling, Roberts has been performing with the Selkirk Spirit Dancers since 2014.

“The respect and love and courage from everybody else when I started performing, it just gave me an added boost,” she said.

“And I think I truly found my identity and confidence through song and dance, through our culture.”

Roberts said she has noticed a change in her confidence since she started performing and modeling, and wants this to be an example for youth.

“I believe that you look at yourself differently, you tend to care for yourself more, you put yourself first and it raises confidence in yourself,” she said.

The March 24 Native Fashion in the City show will mark its fourth year at the Colorado History Center.

Put on by NativeMax Magazine, the interactive fashion and cultural showcase will feature First Nations fashion designers, stylists, models and photographers.

Comments (4)

Up 12 Down 0

jc on Mar 20, 2017 at 9:28 pm

Good for Rebecca. Wouldn't it be nice to see more of our FN women wearing those colourful clothes? Why should they only be shown on a fashion runway? It could catch on for the other races up here. When I was young, I was proud to walk around with my caribou skin winter mukluks.

Up 17 Down 3

Bud Smith on Mar 20, 2017 at 10:51 am

Ponce de Leon was wrong - the Fountain of Youth is just outside Pelly Crossing

Up 25 Down 4

There must be something in the water! on Mar 18, 2017 at 5:27 pm

FYI: There are ALOT of beautiful women in Pelly who can be doing the same thing as Ms. Roberts. We are very proud of her for making the effort to be running for council also...her roots will always be and will stay in Pelly. I wish her the best of luck!

Up 13 Down 15

BetterCallSaul on Mar 17, 2017 at 5:19 pm

Quite the looker for a mother of five ! The self-confidence she exudes is a direct by-product of winning the genetic lottery. Good luck to her ( not that she will need it looking like that ) but let's see how deeply she retains her roots up in Pelly when the agents and sharks start circling the wagons with Hollywood contracts.

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