Ready For Action
Trend alert—athleisure wear is here.
Streetwear meets activewear with Stuzo
The rise of luxury athleisure apparel is redefining casual-cool, giving the sartorially smart an excuse to dress stylish for the gym and offering people who can’t be bothered with high fashion the option to sport yoga pants at brunch—while still looking effortlessly chic. Queer independent designers have been at the forefront of fashion-forward fitness-to-fun style (aka après sport) even before it became the latest craze. While it is easy to find mass-produced athleisure in major chains like H&M and the Gap, nothing is more stylish than wearing labels designed by us, for us. We traveled coast-to-coast to bring you some of the latest athleisure looks from two companies owned by queer women: New York City’s Chromat and L.A.’s Stuzo Clothing.
Chromat (New York City)
This high-end, luxury label was formed by queer designer Becca McCharen in 2010. McCharen has designed garments for Taylor Swift, Madonna (2012 MDNA World Tour), Beyoncé (2014 MTV VMA Performance, Mrs. Carter Show World Tour, and Super Bowl XLVII halftime show), and Nicki Minaj (2011 Femme Fatale World Tour), just to name a few of Chromat’s impressive list of celebrity clients. In 2014, McCharen made the Forbes "30 Under 30: Art and Style" list. (chromat.co)
Stuzo (Los Angeles)
Owned and operated by QPOC couple Stoney Michelli and Uzo Ejikeme, Stuzo Clothing is a line of affordable, genderless, laid-back Cali street style. Stuzo has been worn by androgynous model Madison Paige, Kiyomi McCloskey of Hunter Valentine and The Real L Word, and rapper and choreographer Lady Cultura. Stuzo only produces a few pieces per design in order to provide quality, limited edition products. (stuzoclothing.com)