Dear Dapper Q, so thankful for your page. I’ve been trying to figure myself out and your page gave me the courage to accept who I am. Only problem is how do you find men’s clothes when you have a curvy women’s body? Any advice?
This is the nicest thing anyone could ever say to us. We’re here, after all, to try and help make space for people to understand all of the options they have for being themselves. We try hard here to present as many different kinds of images as we can so that folks can see that there isn’t any one way to dapperQ. (Want to see yourself represented? We’d love to have you model. If interested, e-mail [email protected].)
Onto the question. Fundamentally, the answer is the same as any other kinds of clothes: you give it a try and see. You try a bunch of different shops, a bunch of different cuts, and little by little you figure out what fits well and what you like to wear. Sometimes, you use a tailor; sometimes, you make it work off the shelf. Even within a curvy women’s body, there are so many variations – do you have a large chest? A large butt? A tiny waist and big hips? Each of these are different bodies that have different clothing needs and different challenges when shopping in the men’s department We have a ton of tips for how to start. You’re going to have to experiment until you find what works best. You can find tailors by asking around, or looking on Yelp; read our hints for places to try for clothes.
This is hard work at first. It’s hard because it takes time, and money, and learning how to articulate what you like. But it’s also hard because you’re learning how to do these things as a transgressor. How to shop in the men’s department, how to buy suits, what kinds of men’s styles suit you best – these are all things that aren’t what you are “supposed” to be doing. You’re making this brave, awesome choice to be yourself, even if it’s not always what people would expect. This is not always going to be fun.
But eff what you’re “supposed” to do! This is work but it’s worth it. You will find a way to look the way you want, in the clothes you want, and it’ll be awesome. Sometimes you’ll have the wherewithal to spend 45 minutes in the men’s department, and sometimes you’ll give up and go home. But as you figure out what you like, and how to get it, something better will be happening – you’ll be accepting who you are, as you said. That acceptance – that bone-deep knowledge of who you are, what you do, and that you have the right to do it – gives you the kind of confidence and power that no jerky clerk or pulling middle button on a shirt can ever take away.
You are in a moment that a lot of people have as they cross into the land of dapperQ. It’s a moment of realizing something new about who you are – which is a big deal – and not yet having the tools you need to express that to the rest of the world. It’s frustrating moment to have a concept but not yet have the execution worked out. But you’ve got this! Every dapperQ you see has figured this out, and you will be no different. You’ll find the brands that fit, you’ll find the strategies that suit your body, you’ll find the looks you love, and you will look in the mirror and be THRILLED with what you see. You’re standing in a place many, many people have stood before, and just like all of them, you are going to rock it. Promise.