Can I wear this? Mob Only and Ally Friendly - Making it easier for you and us :)

Can I wear this? Mob Only and Ally Friendly - Making it easier for you and us :)

Sometimes it can be confusing navigating the space between allyship and appropriation and we get this question all the time at Clothing The Gaps.

The DMs usually go something like this...

"Hi there, I'm a non-Indigenous person and I really love your products. I want to support Aboriginal people and causes but, don't want to offend anyone or for it to be seen as cultural appropriation. Just wanted to double check before I buy something that it's okay I wear your Aboriginal designs and merch?" 

To help navigate this conversation and to stop us repeating ourselves we have made it easier for our supporters and created some Ally Friendly and Mob Only symbols to guide your purchases. These symbols are located in all product descriptions on our website and means it's easier for you to represent Indigenous fashion in Australia and beyond. Read more about what these symbols mean:

Ally Friendly Clothing The GapAlly Friendly merch is created with our mob in our heart and everyone in mind.

Ally friendly merch is for everyone. 

When we see non-Indigenous people wearing our designs, we feel proud that they are repping Indigenous fashion our merch and culture.

When we see Aboriginal designs in the world, it means Indigenous people are not invisible in the landscape. 

Our tees are conversation starters, for example, we have our ‘Free The Flag’ and 'Not The Date To Celebrate' tee. The more tees like this in the world that spark important conversations in different spaces, the better. As an ally and supporter you might find yourself in spaces that the Aboriginal Community may not. This means that you are carrying these conversations and influencing places and people with these messages. Using Indigenous fashion and supporting businesses like Clothing The Gaps is a meaningful way to spark important conversation, and to be an authentic ally.

We wear our values on our tees and we are proud that there are other people who share the same values as us. There are so many non-Indigenous allies that truly and genuinely want to make our country better for First Nations peoples.

But, purchasing from Aboriginal brands, businesses and wearing Indigenous designs alone is surface-level allyship. There needs to be more commitment than just buying from Aboriginal brands and businesses.

Wearing Aboriginal design is not dismantling a system that oppresses Indigenous people. Allies need to do more and learn more. Wearing our tees is a great starting point. We have equipped you with our merch and some of the educational content to go with them. We want you to go out in the world, have these important conversations and find ways to do more and support more. 

Learn more

We also like the term and definition of  'accomplice'  which takes ally-ship one step further. We encourage you to read this article Where do you fit? Tokenistic, ally – or accompliceby Summer May Finlay (Yorta Yorta). 

Clothing The Gap Mob Only

Mob Only merch is designed solely Indigenous peoples to wear.

At Clothing The Gaps we create merch that is just for First Nations people. When we do, we will clearly state this in the product description. For example, the ‘Shades of Deadly’ slogans are made for mob and mob only. If you don’t understand the use of the lingo (language) on the tee… then it’s probably not for you.

Wearing an Aboriginal-designed tee to spark important conversations is just the beginning, or one part of meaningful allyship. At Clothing The Gaps we arm you with educational resources, informative campaigns and storytelling, but the learning journey never stops. At Clothing The Gaps, we’re uniting people through fashion and cause. Clothing The Gaps invites mob and allies to wear their values on their tee. We’re more than a tee, we’re a conversation starter. Conversations influencing social change.

Want to read more:


  • Kim

    G’day. I just saw your add popping up during a game I was playing on my phone. I usually skip them , but yours caught my eye. I’ve not read everything yet but I’m definitely going to. I’m also going to send a link to my son who is indigenous and to my indigenous nieces and nephews. I consider myself an ally but after reading the comments , maybe I’m not as well educated on indigenous matters as I thought. So I’m most definitely am going to read some more. I really don’t want to be an ignorant Australian .
    Here is a little story for you . My grandmother and grandfather came over here from England in 1953 as 10 pound pommes under the white Australia policy. She had no understanding of what that actually meant. Her and my grandfather came here with the promise of plenty of job opportunities , great potential to be a home owner and so on and so forth. Their town had been bombed in the early 40s and there was still much to do to rebuild. A lot of people were out of work . My mum remembers eating bread and dripping for lunch and dinner regularly (yuk) . So my grandparents were excited because of the way it was explained to them. Needless to say , once they got here it was NOTHING like what they had been told. And the racism totally shocked her. She even had a lady knock on her door , asking her to sign a petition to "get rid of the black family that live on the corner " . My gran was furious.. She grabbed that petition , tore it up and threw it at the lady and gave her a piece of her mind. She could never understand racism. It made absolutely no sense to her. She had a lot of guilt when she learned what being a 10 pound pomme actually entailed. She carried that guilt with her until the day she died. When she died I was in primary school learning about captain Cook and the lies we were led to believe. . What an absolute disgrace that soooo many people were lied to in so many ways and we didn’t even know it at the time. I know there is a very long way to go , but I’m glad some of the true stories are now common knowledge. I hope for the day that my offspring or their offspring will be taught all the real stuff and learn in history lessons just how disgraceful most of white Australia has been . I hope the history books will show future generations how Australia had genocide and slavery , not just South Africa , America , Germany etc. Maybe once there is an entire generation taught the truth , things will change rapidly once those children are adults and in positions to make REAL change. In the meantime , let’s keep righting the wrongs. Thank you .

  • Margaret

    I’ve read comments here that suggest your ‘mob only’ categorisation of product is divisive. It’s not. We have to start from where we are now not from some nonexistent future where equality is the norm. I am so sorry for the ignorant response to the referendum. We all say YES as loudly as possible. Thanks. Stay strong. 💛❤️🖤

  • Southern Fiu

    Kia Ora! Really appreciate the work you are doing here ❤️ Added a few items into my cart, then stopped, upon reading a few of the notes and articles. While I’d love to think myself an Ally already, and I feel a level of kinship as an indigenous Māori of Aotearoa, I realised I haven’t yet earned the title of true Ally. I still have much to learn, much to do and get involved in, before I am able to really back it up in the conversations that wearing your powerful merch may spark. Surface level support won’t cut it. Appreciate you highlighting this, and I look forward to being able to rock your gear with confidence and knowledge, in the near future!

  • Chris Knight

    Thanks Laura and Clothing the Gap for these informative messages and links. Always learning as an Accomplice and Advocate… it’s an enriching journey and we never stop learning. Gilbruk (respect). Namaste Chris Knight Inspirational Connections / Soroptimist International

  • Simon

    Im in my 50’s and only recently knew of my Wiradjuri grandparent. How do I find out more?

    I want to learn about being an accomplice as I’m now hearing of the anguish of my older family members who felt lost and betrayed that our heritage was hidden.

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