October 08, 2009

Non-Cowichan sweaters are fakes

Cowichan fakes won't win goldOnly Coca-Cola is Coke and only a Frisbee can be a Frisbee--and there is really only one Cowichan sweater. It is one that is produced by the Cowichan Tribes.

Anything else is a knockoff, an imitation.

So while the Cowichan Tribes should feel flattered by the choice of a Cowichan-like sweater as outerwear for the Canadian Olympic team, they also have a right to feel as if they have been ripped off.

It makes sense that the team chose that style of sweater. It has been a symbol of the West Coast for decades and with the Vancouver Games celebrating the wonders of the province, recognizing the iconic sweater is the right thing to do.

Hudson's Bay Company made its near-Cowichan sweaters a key part of its team apparel collection and will sell the hand-knit sweater for $350.

It does look nice, with its elk and maple leaf design. But it's not from the Cowichan Tribes.

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