From our “ask the experts” story first published April 28, 2016.
Shortly after I began research for Butch/Stud Appreciation Week, I had a revelation. Menswear for women is too complex a topic to grasp with only a few days of googling. Alas, even with a fashion background, there was no way I could give this topic it’s proper due and diligence by deadline. Then I remembered journalism. Instead of crudely imitating the experts, I would reach out to them, and blessedly three all agreed to answer all my questions and participate. Let me introduce our panel before delving into the good stuff:
Anita Dolce Vita‘s dapper Q is a style mecca for butches and studs looking to dress on point. The site’s store guide is a particularly useful resource for any smart shopper. For the last three years, dapperQ has released their hotly anticipated list of the 100 Most Stylish dapperQ’s. The 2016 list will be released in June but if you’re looking for style inspiration (and maybe a couple crushes), look no further than the 2013, 2014, and 2015 lists. Anita will be moderating a queer style panel at the Brooklyn Historical Society on June 23rd and dapperQ is currently in talks with the Brooklyn Museum to return for their third fashion show. Her work has been featured in Vice, Nylon, The Huffington Post, The Daily, San Francisco Weekly and more.
Danielle Cooper is the mastermind behind She’s A Gent, an addictive site showcasing Danielle’s exceptional grasp of menswear. Danielle sees She’s A Gent as “an ongoing project… to connect not only to those who appreciate fashion and menswear but understand that it is not limited to one gender.” Danielle has been featured in The Huffington Post, Vogue, Buzzfeed, and even The New York Times (Bill Cunningham caught site of Danielle and Sara of A Dapper Chick at Fashion Week and was so smitten, he compared them to Chanel). Posts on She’s A Gent include Tips & Guides (how to wear a double-breasted suit, how to wear pinstripes) and a section on travel, as well as countless street style moments, delightfully shot and flawlessly established. Danielle is a budding style icon not just for menswear, lesbians, or queer women of color, but for everyone interested in fashion. Check out her recent post with model Ali Medina for a sample spread.
Sara Geffrard runs A Dapper Chick, a style blog devoted to women in menswear and female empowerment. Content on A Dapper Chick has a high fashion feel yet oozes personality and accessibility. The New Yorker’s thoroughly documented style emphasizes detail—a piece of fabric, an accessory, a pop of color, all highlighted with flair and focus. Sara founded The Dapper Chicks, “a group of women who stand in style for causes like women’s equality, bullying, breast cancer, etc.” She has been featured in The New York Times, Vogue, The Huffington Post, Urban Field Notes, Mic, Buzzfeed, The Fab Femme, Pride, and more. Check out The 6 Ws for a sample of Sara’s posts.
AfterEllen.com: What are your favorite brands and styles (if possible) of pants for the butch woman?
Danielle: I have a ton of favorite brands. It’s hard to name just a few, but my tops are The Tailory NYC, Topman, Zara, H&M, and Uniqlo. My favorite style pant is either skinny denim or trousers. My legs are pretty skinny so it’s great that more and more brands are adapting to skinny fit clothing.
Sara: Dress pants and jeans. Typically, I purchased my pants from the men’s section in H&M. Otherwise, my dress pants are custom made by The Tailory NYC.
Lastly, if you’re into leather, I’d check out Nats Getty‘s Strike Oil customized leather jackets. First of all, yes, Getty as in oil heiress Getty. She’s smokin’ hot and queer and is now designing leather jackets with customized artwork. Right now, customization is all the range. There was a lot of talk about this at South by Southwest. People want to be the creative directors of their own style, and brands are moving towards technology that is enabling consumers to design their own pieces. SunSun also offers customized pants and jackets for every style along the spectrum!
Sara: Leather and denim jackets, trench and overcoats. I usually purchased from them from Asos and Uniqlo.