Fashion comes in all shapes, sizes, and forms. You know it, I know it. That also means that fashion is ever-changing, ever-growing, ever-accepting. Today, we have hundreds of gay, bisexual, lesbian, and trans fashion designers who are unapologetically, unequivocally proud of who being themselves, and are proud of their work.
We’re highlighting five trans fashion designers who are changing the fashion industry with equality, inclusivity, and creativity.
1. NO SESSO
NO SESSO, translated from Italian to English, means “no sex/no gender” and was founded by Pierre Davis in 2015 in Los Angeles. Together with Autumn Randolph, and Arin Hayes, they manage NO SESSO, who’s clothes express empowerment of all people with different shapes and sizes.
Around February 2019, Davis made headlines when she was the first transgender fashion designer to debut her work at New York Fashion Week. Many news outlets from Vogue to i-D covered her debut, marking it as the fashion industry’s first transgender fashion designer to be featured on New York Fashion Week.
As for the clothes themselves — if her Fall/Winter 2020 Collection is anything to go off of — they certainly blur the lines between gender and sex. NOSESSO’s clothes are bold, brash, and marvelously colorful. Their Fall/Winter 2020 Collection is a smattering of Fall colors like gold, orange, brown, teal, and many more that truly scream “empowerment.”
Here’s to hoping that Pierre Davis’ inclusion in this wonderful opportunity means more inclusivity shown in not just New York Fashion Week or Vogue Runway, but in other aspects of fashion. Be sure to check them out here!
Stepping back from luxury to affordability, we have Awarewolf. Awarewolf has humble beginnings; it was founded in 2015 by Landon Reed as a way to fund his top surgery. Long after his surgery, Reed continued to grow and expand his business with artist Don Leon.
According to their About page, they define their clothes as being for the community, and being able to offer a bit of discretion for those who aren’t ready to leave the closet just yet. It’s the subtlety that counts.
Their ideals truly do reflect in their clothing, as many of their t-shirts and tops offer zany phrases like, “Be Gay, Do Crime”, as well as intricate and fun designs. If you’re looking for something fun, fresh, and just something subtle to show the outside world you’re queer, be sure to check out Awarewolf right here.
Nghi Nguyen, founder of NEEWIN, is among a few trans fashion designers that sell masks along with his clothing. In an interview with Voyage Houston, Nguyen states that his brand is very recent, having only popped up near the end of 2019, and is mainly focused on womenswear for ages 18-40.
His clothing is also pretty affordable, and absolutely stylish. They range from sweaters to jackets to crop tops. Nguyen incorporates a lot of light, almost pastel colors in these tops. He also sells jumpsuits, and dresses that range from velvet to leather to beautiful metallic gold and beige.
Nguyen has also chosen the Houston Food Bank to donate to, as he continues to create exceptional satin and Louis Vuitton inspired masks. Go check him out on his website right here!
gc2b is a brand filled with trans fashion designers working diligently to provide chest binders for trans people. The brand prides itself on its trans fashion designers, and are not afraid to showcase their binders on people of all shapes, sizes, and gender.
To say that they simply specialize in binders is, in itself, an understatement. They have nude binders, black, white and grey binders, and binders in red, green, blue, and purple. They even have binders that have the trans flag’s colors on them! They also sell Pride merchandise from mugs, to t-shirts, to shorts, to tank tops. They’ve got everything!
The founder, CEO, and designer of gc2b is a trans man himself; his name is Marli Washington, and he founded his company back in 2015. His mission was to create binders that were comfortable, and safe to wear for trans people; this led to him creating the first ever safe-to-use binders that were made specifically for gender-affirming chest binding.
Now, many use these binders to help with their dysphoria. If you’re interested, and are looking to buy a binder or to show off your LGBT+ pride, go on ahead to their site right here!
5. FLAVNT Streetwear
Another one of these trans fashion designers were showcasing here is actually a duo, though only one of them is trans. Trans-man Chris Rhodes and his identical twin sister, Courtney Rhodes, are co-owners of FLAVNT Streetwear, an all-inclusive streetwear company.
Their message and philosophy for FLAVNT is simple and straight to the point — promote self-love and self-confidence, as well as create clothing that shows that you’re not afraid of flaunting yourself to the world. It’s built on a foundation of love and positivity that aims to also support and give back to the LGBT+ community through their designs and actions.
Their clothes are more on the affordable side. Their shop consists of t-shirts with fun phrases like, “Pretty Boy”, and inspiring statements like “Don’t be Bitter, be Better.” They also provide hoodies, tanks, binders, and sports jerseys with, “Binary Breakers,” on them.
FLAVNT also have a partnerships page, where they advertise several fundraisers for trans men and women to help with their top surgeries, or to help ease their financial burden. They have about ten partnerships; almost all of the fundraisers on their page were met! If you want to check their page out, click here!
The fashion world keeps gaining new and fresh talent almost daily. Trans fashion designers are storming the fashion industry, and making a name for themselves! Pierre Davis, Nghi Nguyen, and many other trans fashion designers are striving, and living their best lives through an industry that isn’t quite ready for them yet. But we’re ready.
Which one of these amazing trans fashion designers caught your attention? Be sure to comment and let us know!
Featured Image: https://unsplash.com/photos/ldWXrW13rlo
Hi! My name is Carolina Cisneros, and I am a new intern at Society 19. I’m so glad to have this opportunity! I have an Associates in Studio Art, and I will be heading into university for Cinematic Arts and Technologies. I plan to go into the animation industry, designing characters and bringing more diversity into the world. For now, I’m building my skills. Thank you for reading!