Northern Cree Artist Rhonda Johnson spotlights Indigenous issues through contemporary design.

Today we are showcasing Indigenous Designer and entrepreneur Rhonda Johnson. She is the creative force behind the grassroots company Acahkos Designs.

(Designs by Rhonda Johnson. Photo by- Noella Steinhauer,Steinhauer Photography. MUA- Amanda Maria Steinhauer.  Forever Flawless Makeup By Amanda Maria)

(Design by Rhonda Johnson. Photo by- Noella Steinhauer,Steinhauer Photography. MUA- Amanda Maria Steinhauer.  Forever Flawless Makeup By Amanda Maria)

Rhonda hails from Treaty 8 Bigstone Cree Nation territory in Northern Alberta. Her designs are inspired from traditional values and the most natural source, her Great Grandmother.

(Dress Design by Rhonda Johnson at the "World Fusion on Wearable Art" show in Kamloops BC. "The Strawberry teaches forgiveness & peace. The Strawberry is shaped like a heart & are known to our people as heart berries.")

She was handed down her skills through oral tradition and old fashion teaching starting from a very young age. Her work has a distinctly Northern Cree esthetic and many times deals with issues facing our Indigenous nations, including the Murdered and Missing Indigenous Woman and Girls.

(MMIW Angel Dress Design by Rhonda Johnson for a design competition that required the use of "Non conventional materials".)

(Design elements for the MMIW angel dress created by Rhonda Johnson. )

"I was very excited to have been selected & will take this opportunity to raise awareness about our MMIW here in North America. The statistics & numbers are huge here on our own homelands" - Rhonda Johnson

(Uniquely hand painted Parfleche Red Dress Pins in honour of the Murdered & Missing Indigenous Women by Rhonda Johnson. )

Her business is a family affair, working closely with her husband Justin Johnson who helps with parenting, business and design. 

(Rhonda's husband Justin Johnson helps run the Acahkos booth at the National Indigenous Cultural Expo 2018)

Her super talented kids (Who are successful actors in their own right) are always helping promote her work and even model her clothing.

(Rhondas daughter Acahkos Johnson models her work at the National Indigenous Cultural Expo 2018)

Rhonda and her family lead a sober and positive lifestyle, following the Red path and working as a unified team. Her kids are her biggest supporters!

(Rhonda and Justin Johnson's BIG family!! So many kids who look up to her as an inspiration and motivation for a successful lifestyle)

Rhonda graduated from the Fashion Design & Apparel Production program at Marvel College in 2006. Upon graduation she took personal time off & spent many years refining her skills and helping take care of her sister's children. She is now ready to embark on a new journey and has been pushing her design skills even further.

(Designs by Rhonda Johnson from Western Canada Fashion Week)

Her work is gaining a lot of international attention and her personal orders are non stop!

(Fasion Show by Rhonda Johnson at the National Indigenous Cultural Expo 2018)

Her designs are featured on runways all over Canada and her clothes are being worn by local Indigenous celebrities and dignitaries. 

(Design by Rhonda Johnson worn by Blackstone actress Carmen Moore)

(Design by Rhonda Johnson worn by Miss Native America)

Rhonda's designs are diverse and bold. They include contemporary & traditional clothing, streetwear, regalia, custom order & haute couture.

(Dress Design by Rhonda Johnson)

She has also branched out into jewelry designing, beadwork and Regalia.

(Design by Rhonda Johnson)

(Design by Rhonda Johnson)

(Design by Rhonda Johnson)

(Design by Rhonda Johnson)

She prides herself as a grounded and traditional designer, always willing to appear at any event, big or small, full family in tow! 

Rhonda uses new and old techniques in her design process. She experiments with print, texture, drape, hand and shape. She strives to create new, innovative designs and fashion. Fashion that people will appreciate for its intelligent, cultural design aesthetic, as well as its function. Like POCKETS IN DRESSES!!! One of her trademark ribbon skirt features!

She has also recently invested in an industrial silk-screening machine that is operated by her husband Justin and together they have created unique Powerful Indigenous woman branding.

(Design by Rhonda Johnson, print work done by her husband Justin Johnson)

(Rhonda Johnson, her husband Justin Johnson and little Acahkos Johnson)

Rhonda is in talks right now for a MAJOR PUBLIC fashion event coming up very soon and we will continue to follow her career and share with you as it develops!
I hope you enjoyed this spotlight on this incredible Designer/Artist Rhonda Johnson!

(Rhonda Johnson, her husband Justin Johnson and little Acahkos Johnson when they recently visited the CFWE studio)

You can view more of her work on her Facebook page: Acahkos Designs or on Instagram at: Acahkosdesigner or by emailing her at Acahkosdesigns@gmail.com