Sae What?

lu-Mien pride on a T-shirt.

September 1, 2005

SaeWhat? Clothing was developed by Tramel Woodard to put Iu-Mien youth in America back in touch with their culture. The Iu-Mien are an Asian people unfamiliar even to most Asians. Originally belonging to tribes that live in the mountains of China, this nomadic race spread to Laos, Burma and elsewhere. After the Communists took over Laos in 1975, Iu-Mien in that country were forced to flee; some landed in the United States.

The Iu-Mien traditionally have close-knit communities and a strong sense of culture. In the States, they are scattered into small groups, and the younger generations are adopting an American lifestyle and losing their Iu-Mien identity. The SaeWhat? “street“ tees come in styles that young people would be happy to wear. Woodard says he started the line “to show Iu-Mien kids that you can be cool, and proud of where you come from, at the same time.” —Jane Liaw

Order SaeWhat? Shirts at

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