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November 12 – 18, 2023

On November 14th, join us for Rocking Those Mocs: Connecting to Culture, a panel discussion that invites Indigenous community members to share their thoughts on the creation and celebration of moccasins and culture. 

Celebrate and learn about Indigenous cultures during Rock Your Mocs week. Participate on social media using #CUrockyourmocs and #RockYourMocs.

Two women sit in front of a crowd, showing them a moccasin.

About Rock Your Mocs

Rock Your Mocs is an annual week-long campaign starting November 12 that promotes cultural pride by encouraging Indigenous peoples to share their stories through posting photos of their moccasins. It’s an opportunity for the Concordia community to learn about the diversity of Indigenous peoples and support local Indigenous communities. Join the celebration on social media using #CUrockyourmocs and #RockYourMocs.

Community member profiles

Brooke Rice and a pair of moccasins

Brooke Rice

Brooke Rice is a Kanien’keha:ka graduate student, studying in the Master of Arts Individualized Program, Social Science: “Honouring the Gifts Our Ancestors Left Behind: Leading by Exemplary Kinnections.”

She is also a Concordia alumni, having graduated with a BA in First Peoples Studies and Human Relations. Brooke made her own moccasins out of deer leather, ribbon, size 10-11-13 beads, velveteen and sinew.


My first pair ever was a baby moccasin, which was a self-taught process. I learned the most from a group I joined taught by Merit Cross in Kahnawake.

I really enjoyed the process of creativity, patience, and perseverance.  There are moments when the thread snaps or the needle breaks and I just want to quit but with a few deep breaths I get back to it. The toughest part is choosing colours! So many beautiful colours to choose from and imagining how they come together for the final creation.  

We are mostly known for raised beadwork, floral designs, symbols that reflect our teachings and all creation. Numerous styles of edging as well. All moccasins reveal unique designs of the maker.

Too many to choose from!  I love the community and family vibe created at the ASRC.  I would say the most impactful memory for me was helping organize First Voices Week, bringing in traditional foods for the “Food Sovereignty” discussion and meeting other Onkwehon:we students.

It means proudly taking up space in a colonial setting. I have felt supported enough to reclaim my power and voice my values.   It means challenging the system whenever I can and making impactful changes for the future students to come.  The school provides space for us to be seen and offers numerous resources to create events for us by us.  

I got to witness my friend's beautiful traditional wedding ceremony in Arizona. People came from all over to be a part of their union and people were adorned in beautiful regalia that reflected their culture. Also, all the sings (a gathering across the confederacy to share new social songs and to see family and friends), great law recitals and ceremonies they attended with me.

It shows our ability to evolve and adapt. We are using social media platforms to connect with all our relatives by showcasing our creations with pride. It keeps us connected to our ancestors while forging new paths forward for the future generations. It shows the youth to be proud of who they are and not to be ashamed to wear their culture, especially in a time of mainstream society that promotes fast fashion. I love seeing all the Indigenous folks beading, sewing, creating and being noticed for their work.

Wearing my moccasins empower me because it connects to my ancestors and the land. Depending on the skin used for the moccasin, each animal has a spirit that holds unique traits. The deer represents gentleness, sensitivity and intuition. When I wear my mocs it reminds me to tread lightly on Mother Earth and to believe in my intuition. I feel very proud to wear the moccasins.

Craig Commanda and a pair of moccasins

Craig Commanda

Craig Commanda is Anishinaabe from Kitigan Zibi. He is currently in his fourth year of his undergrad in Film Production. Craig made his own moccasins from Moose leather, rabbit fur and Sinew.


Making Soup and Bannock for the ASRC crew.

It means that we’re taking up space that wasn’t meant for us. That we’re empowering ourselves to make a better world for our future, and to make meaningful relations.

Through a workshop with my friend, Izzy Enright, at Native Montreal, and another time back in Kitigan Zibi when I was younger.

I enjoy the hands-on work that is involved with making them, and working with natural materials.

Anishinaabe style has many variations, but the most notable are the puckered toes and drawstring. I come from the woodland Algonquin Anishinaabe.  

Wearing my moccasins around the ASRC and seeing other people joining in wearing theirs a few days later, starting a mini trend.

To have pride in oneself as an Indigenous person surviving the settler state’s machinations.

Dr. Elizabeth Fast wearing a pair of moccasins

Dr. Elizabeth Fast

Elizabeth Fast is Manitoba Métis, born in St. François-Xavier. She is a tenured professor, Associate Professor in Applied Human Sciences and has worked at Concordia since 2015. Her area of research is land-based learning by and for Indigenous youth, centering urban, indigiqueer, trans and two-spirit youth guidance and experiences. Elizabeth made her own moccasins from moose hide and fox fur.


These are the first pair of moccasins that I made for my mom, to honour her for giving me life.

I learnt the beadwork (Métis floral beadwork) from Métis artist Jaime Koebel-Morse. I learnt how to sew from my mom and I taught myself how to sew moccasins with the help of the book: Maskisina: A guide to Northern-Style Métis Moccasins by Gregory Scofield and Amy Briley (with Sherry Farrell Racette).

Everything! The patience of doing the vamps and the beadwork, the beauty of sewing the hide with sinew, the way the fur brings beauty and warmth to the mocs.

There are a few styles from different regions across our homeland but from what I understand the vamps are usually Métis floral beadwork on hide or cloth and the rest of the moc is home-tanned moose hide, with beaver fur as the trim (traditional). Now there are several more contemporary styles.

Moccasins connect me to mother earth, my culture and my ancestors — through the animals that gave their lives for the hide and the fur and through the artists that made them.

My brother gifted me a gorgeous pair of knee-high mukluks from the Métis-owned company Manitoba Mukluks a few winters ago. They have travelled everywhere with me including a winter gathering that was organized by my research project Land as our Teacher. I remember wearing them on a very cold night last February in a wood cabin surrounded by 45 youth, community members and Elders who had come together to learn about building shelters, trapping, wellness and partake in teachings guided by Elders from several different nations. I was so humbled by the spirit of community and all of the work that our team had done to make this amazing gathering come to life.

Being proud of my culture, honouring our traditional ways, walking in a good way and remembering our teachings and our values as Métis and Indigenous people. 

Moccasin marketplace

Below is a list of Indigenous people whom you can contact to purchase custom-made moccasins.

Note: if you would like to be featured on this list, please email us.

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