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Dykonclast: Rock Hudson

In Queer-oes in a Nut-shell! on January 31, 2009 at 6:30 am

hudson011

What is Nouveau Butch style? There are as many answers to this question as there are women in this subset (a rapidly growing number, we’re pleased to report).  Though we firmly believe in an era of equality, it is this NB’s opinion that a certain look works almost universally.  We’re certainly not saying that there is one panacea, one cure-all-outfit to suit all lesbians; but we do concede that there seem to be an abundance of similarities in taste.  What are our influences?  Where do these ideas come from?  Who is making the clothes? How can we get inspired?  And when are we going to stop asking questions and get right down to it!?  Now. For many lesbians, and especially those who seem to really dig the idea of dyke fashion, these answers are greatly varied–but the inspiration seems to be the same…Gay Men. Gay Men. Gay Men.  

Ladies, let’s face it, they’re dressing the rest of the world–and making them look good.  Straight men’s clothes–designed by gay men.  Gay men’s clothes–designed by gay men.  Straight women’s clothes–mostly designed by gay men.  Let’s get on the wagon.  (To be fair, we do recognize that there are a few ladies out there designing and doing a damn fine job, brava!  But for the most part, I don’t think this really needs to be argued–the gay men are dominating the fashion industry.  And brava to them for doing a great job!)  This has nothing to do with penis-envy or gender-confusion.  Women are allowed to be inspired by men’s fashion–gay or straight.  We’re just highlighting the fact that the uber masculine is uber appealing–as with all things uber–to those interested in fashion politics and making a personal statement through the use of universal identifiers.

This entry isn’t even about who’s making the clothes!  It’s about the style icons who have inspired an evolution into what we now know as Nouveau Butch.  It’s how the clothes were worn, and accessorized, it’s the air around the wearer.  These are the seeds from which our own unique styles have grown.  Rock Hudson indeed qualifies for a fashion dykonclast.  He is, of course, a gay man.  But for a time, he was the epitome of masculinity, the essence of strong male style, and he is, of course, beautiful.  These are all things that seem to attract/inspire lesbians–both in manner and in dress.  For instance…

Dare we say, dashing?

Dare we say, dashing?

 

 

Hudson was sort of the American James Bond–not in the crime-fighting, gadget toting, extraordinary kind of way; but in that accidentally dashing, irresistibly charming, disarmingly adorable way that leading ladies could not resist.  Classic style, earnest manner, and an affable disposition (with just a touch of mischief in the eyes)–these are all on page-1 of the NB handbook.

 

Um, argyle anyone?

Um, argyle anyone?

It’s alleged that the woman Hudson married, Phyllis Gates, was a closeted lesbian and knew all about his male lovers.  Perhaps he borrowed the sweater-vest from her?  If so, then this was taken at a time when they were getting along.  She divorced him after only three years of marriage, sighting “mental cruelty” as the reason–he did not contest the divorce.  

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Get Some!

In The Nouveau Butch on January 29, 2009 at 11:24 pm
This might seem a little random at first, but stick it out…
"It's never too late to raise a little hell."

Doris "Granny D" Haddock says of her life: "It's never too late to raise a little hell."

This 90 year old woman walked 3,000 miles in order to draw attention to her present cause…knitting?  Nope, campaign finance reform.  She teaches us that we can kick ass at any age.  Live it. Love it.

"Welcome to Norway"

"Welcome to Norway"

Did you know that one in four women of Norway will be beaten to bruises (and some to near-death) by their male counterparts?  This should go without saying, but the NB is completely non-violent. NO. HITTING.  And if we can help the victims of violence, let’s get on board.   Amnesty International is responsible for this powerful campaign to raise awareness of violence against women in Norway.  Google it.

"Let's Get Them!"

"Let's Get Them!"

 Cartoonist Catherine Beaunez depicts a naked French woman with some BALLZ on her.   We think Cathy’s got some big ones of her own.

WHAT–you may be asking–DO THESE THINGS HAVE IN COMMON?

Other than the fact that they struck the fancy of yours truly, they’re all featured in the online exhibit of San Francisco’s International Museum of Women entitled: Women, Power, & Politics.  Knowledge is power.  Get some!

As Always,

E.I.B.

Edu-gaytion Lessons #1: Sappho

In Edugaytion on January 29, 2009 at 4:23 am

Those who are unaware of history are destined to repeat it.

–George Santayana

In other words: You can’t know where you’re going ’till you know where you’ve been.  In this spirit, we’re giving you a little-mini-history lesson.  Don’t worry, nerd-chic is totally “in” this year; so grab your adorkable frames, pull on your cardigan, and buckle up.  Every good NB should have a firm grasp on the lesbian past. After all, we are the future.  

Sappho

 

Sappho , (Le coucher de Sappho), Charles Gleyre, 1867

Sappho , (Le coucher de Sappho), Charles Gleyre, 1867

“There rushes at once through my flesh tingling fire, 
My eyes are deprived of all power of vision, 
My ears hear nothing by sounds of winds roaring, 
And all is blackness.

Down courses in streams the sweat of emotion, 
A dread trembling o’erwhelms me, paler than I 
Than dried grass in autumn, and in my madness 
Dead I seem almost.”

–Sappho

Facts: In its original language (some form of ancient Greek), it’s apparent that these phrases are written about a woman. Sappho was from the isle of Lesbos.  The word “Lesbian” literally meant someone from the island of Lesbos (and still does, albeit awkwardly) and became the term to meaning homosexual woman in the mid 1920’s.  Sappho  lived sometime between the years 630 and 570BCE and apparently had a hot, tortured emotional life that she expressed in the form of her poetry… So, rest easy fellow butches, your feelings are normal and completely unoriginal!

And may we just say: Fat bottom girls, you make the rockin world go round!

 B. Cassidy

 

Which Watch

In The Nouveau Butch, Tools of the Trade on January 28, 2009 at 3:32 am

There are certain items we wear that say a lot about us.  Funky hipster glasses or wireless frames?  Chuck Taylors or Frye boots?  Leather messenger bag or Volcom chain-wallet?  And while we realize that on a different day you can be a different kind of dyke, some accessories are investments and consequently temporary life choices.  The time piece is certainly one of these.  Thus, the question is posed: Which watch?

In a perfect world, everyone would have at least three time pieces: one for dressing “up,” one for dressing “down,” and one for working “out”–we realize we didn’t need the quotes around “out,” we just didn’t want that one to feel left…well…out…

If you happen to be a personal trainer and spend all your time in the gym, by all means, invest in a stopwatch or runner’s contraption with lap-ometers or whathaveyou.  But if your sole purpose for rockin the arm-clock is to adorn your handsome wrists, then follow us on a journey through time–or at least, through the following images.

Quiet Time

Kenneth Cole New York Grid Square Case $85

Kenneth Cole New York Grid Square Case $85

 

 

 

Understated, classic, elegant–this is the watch for someone with a quiet sense of style.  Someone who is always well-put-together, but never ostentatious in her look would choose a piece like this one.  It looks as good with a power-suit as it does with a pair of jeans. It will be cool ten years from now as it was ten years ago.  NB endorses this purchase 100%–can’t go wrong here.

Changing With the Times

Diesel DZ7071 $120

Diesel DZ7071 $120

 

 

If you’re updating your jewelry with each new trend, this Diesel watch will get you to every gallery opening and private screening fashionably late.  It’s a good size, absolutely noticeable on every woman’s wrist, and a really strong, bold choice for time piece.  If you’re a fashion risk taker, this watch will complement most of your ensembles; if you’re playing it safe in a polo, this piece will keep it hip.

 

The Knock Around Clock

Adidas Black Striped Strap Watch $75

Adidas Black Striped Strap Watch $75

 

 

 

If you would describe your style as “sporty” or even super-casual, we recommend this digital doozy from Adidas.  It’s comfortable, light-weight, and will look totally hot with your warm-up jacket.  Or it could be the soft touch peaking out underneath the cuff of your black button down at work.  Please note, if you’re in a very strict business environment, this can be considered a risk.  Our next selection is far more appropriate if you’re spending your time climbing the corporate ladder instead of the rock-wall.

Watch Out World!

Fossil Boyfriend Silver Dial $105

Fossil Boyfriend Silver Dial $105

 

 

 

If you’re still making your way through the corporate jungle and have not yet come upon your very own pile of green, may we suggest something shiny (but not flashy), classy (but not boring), and elegant (but not too girly).  This watch says: “I’m here to play the game.  I can take clients to lunch. I can sit in on the big board meeting.  And I will work my ass off until I can afford the real deal.  I am a woman on a mission.”  This is totally a starter-kit for the future power dyke.  What, you may be asking, does the real deal look like?  Hold on to your handle-bars kids because this next piece is a Porsche in a parking-lot of Pintos…

The Big Time

 

The Cartier Roadster $4,500 and up....

The Cartier Roadster $4,500 and up....

 

There are no words…

 

Wearing a watch implies a sense of responsibility.  Wearing a cool watch secures a sense of style.  Even in a pair of track-pants and a hoodie, the right watch can signal fashion savvy and yes, even sexual preference.  Wear one that makes a statement, the appropriate statement for who you are.  Whatever you wear should reflect you–it does, whether you realize or not, so make conscious choices to represent yourself appropriately.  Your sense of style should be one that helps explain you, your taste, your point of view.  It’s just another method of communicating with the world, helping others “see” you, and know who you are.  So enjoy picking your accessories, choose wisely, and make it count!

Until next time

E.I.B.

 

Music Sounds Better With You

In The Nouveau Butch, Tools of the Trade on January 27, 2009 at 5:06 am

We here at Nouveau Butch cannot possibly express the importance of good make-out music.  We also understand that setting the mood for a steamy evening can be cause for stress beyond reasonable expectation, and we’re here to help.  You love kissing to the sweet sounds of Ani, but those tunes remind you of every ex-scapade you’ve ever encountered.  If the music sends your memory back to the girls of yesteryear, odds are: this will distract you from the song-bird in hand…   And everyone knows, a bird in hand is worth two in the bush…or something like that…  Now that we’ve got your mind in the gutter, or the bush, or somewhere unholy, let’s talk turkey.  

And by turkey, we mean music.

The point of good mood music is to wipe out any incidental environmental noise (the neighbor’s vacuum, kids outside, or even the inconsistent hum of the refrigerator).  It should provide an aural story-line for the listeners, a soothing sound, and most importantly: a natural rhythm.  It should NOT remind the listener of past lovers, great karaoke nights, or other unrelated events–it shouldn’t have strong ties to any outside occurrences.  We here at the NB highly recommend obscure music choices  for this reason.  The last thing you want on your first romantic evening alone is to turn on some Tegan and Sara–only to turn off your potential partner (She had a bad experience at a T&S concert in college, she doesn’t want to talk about it.).  Then, next thing you know, you’re all by yourself, completely unsatisfied, watching another episode of Rachel Maddow with Ben and Jerry in your lap.  

To be clear, it shouldn’t be necessary to replace an entire i-tunes library with each relationship turnover–that could get pricey for some of you, we realize. If she knows nothing of music, by all means rock your all-star playlist.  But try to steer clear of queer standards such as the ever-popular Ani D, T&S, Sarah Mc, and so on–odds are another lady put these tunes in her fantasy file long before you ever came along (that is, unless you’re quite young–the NB recognizes and applauds those of you embracing your inner-butch at an early age).  If possible, try to have a musical conversation prior to the first night alone–that should give you a good idea of what your working with.

If she’s never heard of Damien Rice, you’re good to go.  Download the album “O” right now if humanly possible–highly recommended for a rainy afternoon alone with no place to go.  

 

The Blower's Daughter.

We can't take our eyes (or ears) off Track 3: The Blower's Daughter.

 

 

Ask her questions.  If she absolutely hates The Weepies, or any mellow folk tunes, then stay away. If not, “Say I am You” is a great album to hear on a sunny Saturday morning for that oh-so-intimate pre-coffee make-out.  

 

Gotta Have You.

Nothing else will do, Track 2: Gotta Have You.

 

 

For a hot Friday night hook-up, try Lykke Li’s “Youth Novels.”  

 

We like Track 7 "Little Bit" a lot.

We like Track 7 "Little Bit" a lot.

 

 

For something a bit more serious, for the sophisticated set, we HIGHLY recommend Ali Farka Toure & Ry Cooder’s collaborative album “Talkin Timbuktu”–sexy guitar solos, sexy beats, and the moaning voice of need: so hot.

 

"Ai Du." Impossible!

Try and keep your clothes on during Track 9: "Ai Du." Impossible!

 No matter which tunes you choose, we hope you make the sweetest of music with the sweetest of ladies.  And most importantly, in the words of the ever-relevant Roxette, “Listen to Your Heart.”

As Always,

E.I.B.

L-Word Pun of the Week

In The Nouveau Butch on January 26, 2009 at 4:01 pm

bette

“Cheatas never prosper…”

B.Cassidy

The Bisexual Butch

In Hot Girls, The Nouveau Butch on January 25, 2009 at 5:22 pm

I KNOW, I KNOW, this sounds like a complete contradiction in terms.  Unfortunately, in the era of Tila Tequila and Jenna Jameson (Tila should be honored I put her in the same category as this brilliant–though morally questionable–business woman), we tend to think of Bi women as just overly slutty femmes.  Fair?  Certainly not.  We here at the NB combed through the archives to prove that Bi women have been butch for a long time.  The case could probably be made that those from yesteryear had no choice but to sleep with men, it was practically a career requirement, but we must remember it is possible for one, even a butch, to swing both ways.  And while the bi/butch relations have been contentious at times, let’s bury the hatchet and tip our hats to the Bi women who did butch very, very well.  Here are our three favorite Butch Bi women of all time:

MARLENE DIETRICH

Marlene Dietrich totally Bi, totally NB

Marlene Dietrich totally Bi, totally NB

 

 

 

Rita Hayworth once confessed that she got the best head ever– not from a man– but from Marlene Dietrich. When Marlene wanted Rita to return the favor, Rita told her, “Mañana.” Tomorrow never came…Divas The Site 

If that’s not a butch story, I don’t know what is…


GRETA GARBO

Greta Garbo looking buff in full make-up...

Greta Garbo looking buff in full make-up...

Louise Brooks described Garbo as a masculine but ‘charming and tender lover.’  –The Girls: Sappho Goes to Hollywood by Diana McLellan

Also, Ms Garbo was often described as an “outdoors girl”–how many of us have held that same title?


MADONNA

Madonna and Sandra Bernhard in matching trousers...

Madonna and Sandra Bernhard in matching trousers...

Madonna came out as “bisexual” in her 1991 interview with The Advocate.  I don’t think anyone would dispute her butch status.  Let’s just say it’s fair to assume that she’s always worn the pants in every relationship…though, thankfully, not these pants.

Madonna & Britney sittin' in a tree,  I think the year was 2003...

Madonna & Britney sittin' in a tree, I think the year was 2003...

While no one here at NB is implying that Madonna and Britney had any sort of romantic involvement, the body language in this picture CLEARLY shows that if they were a couple, and we were speculating who the bottom would be: It’s Britney, Bitch.  Madge has her open body posture, shoulders back, and the “Who gives a fuck?” head tilt.  Britney’s shoulders lean in, implying nervousness/neediness. Also, when in doubt, the Butch is in black.

Madonna snogging one of her back-up dancers in Paris, May 2008

Madonna snogging one of her back-up dancers in Paris, May 2008

When in Rome, do as the Romans.  When in Paris, make out with women.  Check and check.  Though, this image makes me slightly uncomfortable. Maybe it’s because the back-up dancer looks like a child, maybe it’s because the Material Mom is drinking straight from the champagne bottle, or maybe it’s just that I never got used to the idea of Madonna playing guitar.

As Always,

E.I.B.

Another One Bites the Muff?

In Uncategorized on January 23, 2009 at 11:43 pm

Lily, honey, that's not where it goes...

Lily, honey, that's not where it goes...

 

Lily Allen has admitted having a lesbian moment when she snogged identical twins in San Diego.

In an interview with GT (The Gay Times) the singer said: “I was on the sofa and I had them both, I was dancing and shoving my a**e on one of them and one on my front bottom.”

She added: “That’s the only time, but I do have wet dreams – lesbian dreams – quite a lot.” Too much info Lily!

Allen also told the mag’ she supports equal rights for homosexuals. She said: “I just feel you have no right to hate anyone because of how they’re born…I think if you’re a human being with a heart in your chest, you’re the same as everyone else.”  –MTV UK

 NOTE TO FUTURE REPORTERS LOOKING FOR “GAY” STORIES:  Girls kissing girls when they’re wasted doesn’t count.   

SECONDARY NOTE:  We don’t need more crazy women on our team.  You can keep her.
lily

B. Cassidy

Get Lucky!

In Uncategorized on January 23, 2009 at 3:35 pm

According to Susan Miller at Astrologyzone.com,
today is the luckiest day of the year!

Translation: Don’t stay home!

People always complain that horoscopes and predictions are lame, or self-fulfilling prophesies at best. My response is: so what! If it’s a good propheshy: Go fulfill it! Put on your snappiest outfit, head to a location largely populated with available women, and strut your stuff. Almost everything in life comes down to confidence (any butch will tell you that). So take your encouragement from anywhere you can.

I mean if the planets are aligned for a night of good luck, just go with it. Don’t question, don’t test it, just believe.

Have a way-groovy, far-out day people!
planets

Obviously…

In Uncategorized on January 22, 2009 at 4:02 pm

We’re having some issues with our appearance…
Yes, we do appreciate the irony of a style blog that is having trouble finding it’s own sense of style–or, more accurately, achieving it’s own sense of style with little to no technical skill. If anyone can offer words of wisdom, or some kind of help in this area, please, send us a message.
Thanks,
E.I.B.
nouveaubutch@gmail.com