This photo series, "Acclimate Not Assimilate" seeks to honor our ancestors and to reclaim the significance of traditional, cultural attire by incorporating such pieces with our everyday wear. For those of us who often feel as though we are caught between cultural identities - that of our ancestors and that which we currently live in - doing so demonstrates embracing our roots, being proud of where we came from, and ultimately, the importance of hanging onto, celebrating and propagating our families’ cultures.
Kelly Mei Luu is a Chinese/Vietnamese American, who chose to incorporate Jade stone in her fashion.
"To the Chinese, the Jade stone is an embodiment of the Confucian values: courage, wisdom, justice and compassion.
You’re given a piece of Jade to wear when you are born as a symbol of goodness, preciousness and beauty. We strive to represent the stone itself: purity from its polish, intelligence from its hardness, and justice from its angles. It really is an honor and a precious moment when I am passed a piece of Jade to wear from my grandmother. What I feel when I wear my grandmother’s Jade bangle and necklace truly reflects all the values I was raised upon. The desire to be pure, just, and good is present.”