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Archive for the ‘Tools of the Trade’ Category

There Ain’t No Secrets in NY

In The Nouveau Butch, Tools of the Trade on May 12, 2010 at 2:38 am

Here are 3 places I want you New York Butches to know about (and sorta selfishly hate myself for telling you).

1.  Raine’s Law Room –Named for “Raine’s Law” which allowed only Saloons to serve alcohol on Sundays (meaning any place with at least 5 rooms for rent); this 1920’s style speakeasy really takes this genre of establishment to the next level.  Secretive, sexy, and really smart; this is an experience that will make any savvy New York gal swoon.  Have a drink and hit the town–there are great restaurants nearby.  Or on those beautiful evenings you never want to end, cap things off with a vintage cocktail and talk til dawn.  So romantic.  Take a look at the wallpaper while you’re there.  Tres chic, Les Frique.

2. The Campbell Apartment — Named for the tycoon who once held his office here (John W. Campbell, father of modern science fiction); the Campbell apartment is a not-so-secret spot somewhat hidden within the walls of New York’s iconic Grand Central Terminal.  On off-hours (non-travel time), one could sit all day with a chess board or even a lap-top and do all ones thinking, writing, and drinking.  Enjoy the spirits that haunt this space, the ones that dance upon the tongue and upon the periphery of one’s consciousness are at home in this very same space.  Drink it all in.

3. The Frying Pan Only in New York, only in the summer, this outdoor bar/grille sits out on the Hudson like a secret pier party.  Whether you choose to fry yourself and your own precious skin on its upper decks, or you sit below and celebrate through sunset, this low-key non-scene is an amazing way to unwind with friends at the end of a long day where you’ve been cooped up in an over-air-conditioned office.  Grab a game of scrabble and head down to Chelsea.  Cross over the West Side Highway and take a deep breath.  You’re off the grid and off the clock.  Drink up and enjoy.

Cheers dears,



Lemon Ricotta “Pancakes”

In The Nouveau Butch, Tools of the Trade on May 12, 2010 at 2:12 am

Before I share with you all my secret recipe for lemon-ricotta pancakes, please note that my girlfriend does not eat sugar.  She does not eat flour.  She does not eat anything remotely resembling a refined carbohydrate…well, unless you think Splenda resembles a carb–that she’ll consume by the truckload.  *If this is a total turn off to your taste-buds, feel free to sub sugar where necessary.  These egg-based pancakes will resemble a crepe more closely than a pancake.  But, as I am not French, and I don’t own a crepe-pan, I feel I have no business calling these crepes.  I will, however, unabashedly call them delicious.

Step 1: Zest one lemon.  (Use a cheese-grater if you don’t have a micro-plane, but zest that bad-boy bald.)

Step 2: Crack 4 eggs and beat thoroughly with 1/2 cup ricotta cheese and 1/4 cup of fat-free half-and-half, sprinkle some salt & pep in there while you’re at it.

Step 3: Add 2 heaping Tablespoons of Splenda and 1/2 the lemon zest to the egg-mixture.  Beat thoroughly.

Step 4:  Cut another 2.5 TBS of Splenda and the remaining lemon zest into 4 TBS of butter.  Set aside for topping.

Pour egg mixture in a thin layer over a well-greased (preferably with butter), small frying pan.  When thin pancake starts to bubble, tilt pan until entire mixture is solid, then flip.  Repeat until egg mixture is gone (should yield 4-6 pancakes).  Put a dollop of lemon-butter atop your stack of pancakes and drop a few fresh blueberries onto the stack.  Garnish with a sprig of mint and serve with Iced Green Tea.  A delicious way to start off any summer day.



Come Undone

In The Nouveau Butch, Tools of the Trade on June 24, 2009 at 4:21 pm

It’s no secret that the NB loves neckware, or accessories in general for that matter; but there’s one underutilized effect we feel is definitely worth discussing: the bow-tie.  They’re daring and sexy on Bond, they’re classy and elegant on Gene Kelly, and they’re the perfect conversation piece on any NB.

Under certain circumstances, we agree, that a nicely tied bow can be sassy, but unless you have the right jacket…or the right brow for that matter…it’s easy to miss the mark on this look and end up landing somewhere around Peewee Herman.  If you must tie one on, stay clear of tiny, straight edge bows, just to be safe.Bow_tie_-_ralph_lauren_-_nibs_blog

Also, it should be noted that tying a real bow-tie is a little bit tricky.  Check out this video for a Southern gentleman’s instructions.


And even when you’re a super-sassy professional sexpot, a tied bowtie can look a bit square.  *Note, one of these things is not like the other…and she looks like fun.


So grab an old fashioned black one and sling it ’round your neck.  Don’t come undone taking a little fashion risk. Open a few buttons on any shirt and rock this look with confidence.  After all, that’s always your best accessory…and it will definitely tie this look together.


In The Nouveau Butch, Tools of the Trade on May 28, 2009 at 12:28 am

When was the last time this word brought dazzling images of swanky silver to mind?  We could mean chain-links, watch-links, or clinks of glass toasting your class, but in this particular piece we’re referring to the clasps which hold your kissing cuffs together–Ah yes, cufflinks.

Cufflinks are always classy–the mere presence of French cuffs encircling one’s wrist brings with it a bundle of elegance, like a beautiful bow tied around the bundle of flowers of fingers (ahem, lesbians).  But how to do it?  Can’t go wrong with a classic, Tiffany & Co Almond pair: simple, understated, timeless, these say “fabulous” without a lot of flash.  We here at the NB can get behind that all day long.


If you’re in the music business, or you actually play guitar, we highly recommend these Fender cuff benders.  Unless you’re a die-hard music fan with instruments and autographs strewn about your home–shy away from something so specific.  Using a guitar pick to tell the world how cool you are is completely counter-productive unless you’ve got the skills and devotion to back it up.  If it’s a conversation piece, make sure you’re end of the conversation consists of more than “I just liked them.”


To play tres preppy, one can always go with a label–Bvlgari makes a snappy pair, Kenneth Cole has a few branded with his logo, and wearing one’s own initials is always appropriate.  There’s nothing like wearing your own brand to state your value without saying a word.  However, nothing screams prep-monster like a pair of horsies galloping toward your knuckles, mallets in hand, ready to play Polo.  As if French Cuffs didn’t scream PREP loud enough–throw these bad-boys on and shout it from the roof-tops.


When adopting a simple, classic style (collared shirt, nice slacks, clean lines, minimal color/cut creativity) one expresses a lot with the details to adorn the outfit.  The smallest opportunity to showcase one’s personality will be perceived that much more clearly by those who take notice–so choose these tiny details carefully!  Find a pair you love, find a pair that make you happy.

images-4Have a nice day,


Best. Neighbor. Ever.

In Hot Girls, Queer-oes in a Nut-shell!, Tools of the Trade on May 21, 2009 at 1:41 pm
We here at the NB would like to introduce our favorite new neighbor–she’s not new to the gay scene, nor to the blog scene, but she’s hot, she’s femme, and she’s right next door.


If ever there were a perfect counter-part for the Nouveau Butch, it would be The Femme Next Door

“As a lesbian lingerie designer, I know a thing or two about what women want… After continuously advising friends on how to impress their girlfriends with the perfect first date restaraunt, right wine and best birthday gifts I decided to share the wealth…”
Did we mention how hot she is?

Did we mention how hot she is?


Her romantic date tips, great gift ideas, and hot lingerie pics are totally worth a view–and now span from NY to Chicago.  This is, indeed,  a tail of two cities.  So check her out–er…check her sight out…word on the street is she’s got a lady.  Sorry Butches.


In The Nouveau Butch, Tools of the Trade on February 27, 2009 at 10:58 pm

Denim has come a long way since Mr Levi Strauss, a 24 year German immigrant arrived in San Francisco to set up his dry goods company where many of the California gold rush miners lived out of wagons. Strauss and a Nevada tailor David Jacobs, co-patented the process of putting copper rivets in denim work pants to add strength. On May 20, 1873, they received U.S Patent No.139,121 and Levi Strauss & Co began manufacturing the famous Levi brand of jeans. This date is now considered the official birthday of “blue jeans.” Here at NB we strongly believe that every butch should have a great pair of jeans to show off her best ass-ets — so without further ado..
The ‘Boyfriend.’
This cut is a pure unadulterated example of a past trend coming back into style — Marilyn knew how to work this shape effortlessly! Believe it or not, the good thing is these jeans don’t really need you to have a fella or even a gay husband (phew i hear you cry) furthermore they are great if you need a little extra room in the leg area for your athletic thighs…. The rule is that they are over sized and ripped up, or just plain big and baggy. Turn them up at the ankles to emphasis the ‘oversized’ shape.


Victoria Beckham aka Posh Spice–wife of ‘Golden balls’ David Beckham, has got the modern-day ‘boyfriend’ down to a ‘t’ or should I say ‘NB’ — what with the pixie haircut she looks like she could be moving over to the ‘dark side.’  Remember to look your best in these jeans, pair them with a tight tee, at NB we suggest you not to go too baggy on top, otherwise you risk looking like one of the  miners Mr Levi designed his overalls  for…  b

Be the boyfriend with Levi’s 501.


Rip it up with ‘Siwy.’
Launched Spring 2005 by Michelle Siwy in downtown New York City, Siwy offers the ultimate denim vintage-inspired, sexy, fashion-forward designs with a heavy dose of New York edge. In less than four years, this brand has developed a cult following among denim-heads. Siwy creates four collections per year, each forging ahead with fashion trend and fit and ensures that each pair has a one-of-a-kind hand-crafted vintage Americana label.
If baggy definitely isn’t your thing and you prefer something a bit more, well how should i say, long and lean, these stunning works of art should go straight to the top of your shopping list. Read the rest of this entry »

Brace Yourself

In The Nouveau Butch, Tools of the Trade on February 13, 2009 at 1:54 pm


Ever since Egyptian times people have worn charm bracelets, and even before that, men would gather unusual bits of wood or pieces of stone to ward off their enemies. These were considered ‘lucky charms’ and powerful protectors against evil. Today, wearing the right accessories can be life or death and there ain’t no charm in that..

When you want to load up on the big stuff there is no-one better than Chrome Hearts:
braceLuis Morais has something for everybody, his jewelry masterfully combines skulls with diamonds, and leather with pearls….it’s rock’n roll with sparkle, very NB, so with these on your wrist you will be able to ward off evil and find your ‘Goddess’ for the afterlife! 
Or finally add strength to your look and outfit with a bullet- deflecting leather wrist band -If she can do it so can you:

So whatever the look, whether you’re fighting crime or donning chrome, bracing yourself with the proper accessories should bring you the best of luck!

From Butch to Bitch & Back Again

In Tools of the Trade on February 9, 2009 at 8:10 pm

Let’s talk bootiful boots!  God is that awful…

Anyway, we’ll start with the basics.  Here’s one place where Old School Butch and the NB cross paths.  The necessity for a great pair of boots is universal.  If you’re kickin up the shit somewhere South of the Mason Dixon, or just standing your ground in a sexy urban setting, the perfect pair can make you feel sturdy, steady, and yes, even sexy.

Frye boots have graced the feet of all walks of life.  Civil War soldiers and 1960’s rebels alike have rocked these American classics.  Mr. Frye started making boots back in 1863, and the brand has a rich heritage.  Presently, their parent company is the licensee for Coach leatherwear and Calvin Klein footwear.  It’s almost like being chic in disguise.  **Sidenote: knowing the intimate details of one’s clothes can be extremely alluring.  Being an expert on the packaging you wrap yourself in says that you’re thoughtful, meticulous, and learned–something every NB strives for:

The American Classic

The American Classic

Fiorentini+Baker, weird name right, sounds a bit like a pop group or a restaurant–these boots are certainly tasty and really do rock!  Butches, meet Eli, Eli, say hello to your new friends.  This greased-leather, round-toe bad-girl will split your heart with it’s top-split, Italian attitude.  Try not to drool…

Kickin' Ass, Takin Names

Kickin' Ass, Takin Names

Moving from biker to babe,  check out another pair by F&B.  They offer just a touch of heel. I think you owe it to yourself now and then to switch up your look–keeps em on their toes (and with these boots we are talking quite literally).  This boot is called “Bi”–please hold the snickers–is a convertible high boot which can be taken to ankle length using the snaps just above the bottom buckle.  It takes a very specific kind of butch to pull these off…or rather, to put them on.  Hopefully, you’ve got someone else to pull your clothes off.



More cow-bell? What? No, more staff-bel?  Huh?  OH! More Belstaff!  Of course!  Why didn’t you say so in the first place.  There’s something predatory and powerful about this gorgeous pair.  And you know what they say (both in the animal kingdom and the lesbian one): Eat or be eaten.

Boss Biatch

Boss Biatch

Or if your taste is more vintage, this second pair should make your hair stand on end.  You could enter a room topless in these black beaties and still all eyes would be on your boobs…I meant boots…oh who are we kidding?  Still, someone would compliment your footwear.

Big Bad Bikin' Boots

Big Bad Bikin' Boots

 Pick your pair, strap ’em on, and head out for a walk.  All of these boots were made for walkin–so that’s just what you should do!  Late, perhaps your pals could ask: Who’s bed have you boots been under?  Or perhaps, you could Shake, shake, shake–shake, shake, shake–shake your booties!



For Whom the Belstaff Tolls

In The Nouveau Butch, Tools of the Trade on February 5, 2009 at 5:53 am


Americans take note!  There’s a reason the Euro set always seem to be a cut ahead of the rest when it comes to dress. They’ve got access to brands like this one–not yet sold in the US, but available online.  If you can ignore the recession and invest in some timeless pieces like these, you’ll travel in style for miles to come.  Whether you’re of the corporate sort or simply dressing to impress, a topcoat is an easy way to make a lasting first impression:


Take me to your leader.833851564a9928f6edc1ddd2eed987df

Take me to your leader.

Both of these stunning coats embody a style that never seems to fade into oblivion.  They have that sort of sexy military madam/come-hither look.  They must be worn with confidence and an extra layer of eyeliner.  If your style is a bit more casual, perhaps a motorcycle jacket is more your speed.  And whether you pull up on a custom chopper or slide out of a taxi cab, this piece is quite fetching on most.  The cloth says you’ve got taste, the cut says you’ve got balls:

Wanna go for a ride?

Wanna go for a ride?

If you need a day off from black (sighs with disappointment), I suppose an afternoon drive in jeans and some brown leather won’t do you any harm.  Keeping it in the family, this is vintage Belstaff (worn by DiCaprio playing Howard Hughes in The Aviator–nod & a wink to Ms Blanchette hot hot hot):


Wait…what were we talking about?  Oh right, fashion…  Here’s the jacket:

Lookin Fly.

Lookin Fly.

So depending on the mood, Rock chick/ Tom boy/Rebel NB (with a cause off course) – off you go.  I would aim to have timeless shapes in my wardrobe, and notice please there is not a sniff of faux in the house! Girls in real leather (not trousers, not my thing) with the attitude to match – what a turn on.  So grab your flask, saddle up, and head out for a brisk ride in these cool winter months.  



Tied Up

In Edugaytion, Tools of the Trade on February 3, 2009 at 2:19 pm

There’s no way around, over, or under it–every butch needs to know how to tie a tie.  Whether you’re NB or totes old school, this is a skill you can’t be without.  And truthfully, whether butch or femme, the right piece of neckwear can be just the thing to attract the attention of all the young witches & wenches…


This is a joke. Please never dress like this. Unless the invitation says "Hogwarts HO-down," this outfit is always unacceptable.

The following is a brief tutorial on different knots and what they may or may not imply about your personality, sexuality, sexual prowess, and/or general level of competence.

The Half Windsor Knot


UNDER achiever.

UNDER achiever.




This knot screams “I overslept!” or “I tied this in the elevator!” or “I don’t want a promotion!”  The single windsor is unavoidably lopsided and always undersized to be the centerpiece of one’s appearance from the chest up.  It never looks neat, and often gives the impression that the wearer took no care in presenting herself this morning–which is clearly not the case.  The NB supports this knot ONLY if the wearer is extremely thin, wearing a skinny tie, and going for a modified Jonas Brothers look with lots of accessories, boots, etc–which can be really sexy.  To be clear, the NB is vehemently against all things Jonas.  But sometimes we like their clothes…and their hair-cuts…and only because they have totally ripped off our look.

The Small Knot



This knot is up...and tight...

This knot is up...and tight...




Again, if you’re a very thin woman wearing a very thin tie, this one could work.  If you are not, this will make you look like the most anal-retentive, obsessive-compulsive tie-wearing lesbian in all the land.  It may be the perfect look for work if your job involves some sort of micro-analytic skills or is in a very strict setting.  There is something kind of sexy about someone so uptight–but bare in mind, women are going to think you’re into the kinky stuff.  Remember: many times we teach people about ourselves by sending opposite messages in our manner of dress. 

The Four In Hand Knot


Goes well with a sharkskin jacket.

Goes well with a sharkskin jacket.

This is a joke.  Seriously, if you’re four years old and this is your fourth attempt to tie a tie, it’s adorable.  Or if you’re going to a retro eighties party as one of the members of A-HA, it’s fine.  Short of that, please, just leave the tie at home.  This is no way to present yourself.  Even when done correctly, this knot looks a mess. At the bar, you’ll look like a poser who has no idea what she’s doing.  You’ll never convince the girl to come sailing with you if this is the first knot she sees.  And that’s why we all head to the bars, right? No? Then why are there so many girls in boat shoes?


The Pratt (or Shelby) Knot

Ah the sweet spot!

Ah the sweet spot!




Can’t go wrong with the Shelby.  This knot says, I’m suave, confident, and I understand the power of my actions.  The perfectly centered dimple hints that there’s more than meets the eye.  The soft, medium-sized knot implies a certain amount of modesty.  Yes, this is the knot for the dark-horse, the sleeper.  It’s so perfect it will go unnoticed by most; but for the select few with keen eyes, your taste and execution will be appreciated, lauded even.  Like a warm brandy and a fat cigar–or, if you’re under the age of 50 a fresh berry smoothie and a great article in the Village Voice.  This knot represents all things cool and enjoyable.  The NB highly recommends!

The Double Windsor







Symetry? Check.  Proportionality? Check. Confidence? Double Check.  This is the knot of perfection.  The Double Windsor screams competence, confidence, and super-sexidence. This tie says: “Don’t worry, I’ve got everything under control. Sit back, and enjoy the ride.”  This is the knot of the top, the knot of elegance, of genteel manners; in short, it is the official knot of the NB.

We realize there are a number of other knots to be addressed.  We apologize we couldn’t fit them all into one entry.  There’s plenty more blogging to do; we’ll get there, knot to worry.

As Always,