Also.Also.Also: Wait, Real Quick, Tell Me How You Feel About Flannel as a Lesbian Signifier

Oh would you look at the time! Guess we should read some links and get going. It was great to see you!


Queer as in F*ck You

The Queer, Disabled, and Women of Color Suffragettes History Forgot.

16-Year-Old LGBT Activist Publishing Anti-Bullying Teacher’s Guide.

Erin wanted to say something: Let’s End Flannel as a Lesbian Signifier Once and for All.

Listen, this article is a journey that starts off with some casual racism and then pops over for a quick history lesson and then things get really crazy.91-Year-Old Lesbian Is America’s Only Remaining Princess.

Not Just Boy And Girl; More Teens Identify As Transgender.

Wrong On All Counts: One Woman’s Reflections On Her 1976 Coming Out Letter To Ms.

Femmes of Colour Is a Safe Haven from Toxic Masculinity.

U.S. Episcopal Diocese Votes To Stop Using Masculine Pronouns For God.

The Mental Health Repercussions of Identifying as a Bisexual Woman.


Doll Parts

A Trump Sexual-Misconduct Accuser Just Declared She’s Running for Office

What The World Would Look Like If We Taught Girls To Rage.

Top Female Music Execs: Recording Academy ‘Woefully Out of Touch’.

Prescribing Mindfulness Allows Doctors to Ignore Legitimate Female Pain.

Justice For Bresha Meadows: Ohio Teen Accused Of Killing Father In Self-Defense Has Been Released.

Inside the Top-Secret Abortion Underground.

For Every Woman In Political Office in the United States, There Are Three Men and I dislike all of them!


Saw This, Thought of You

Black Beekeepers Are Transforming Detroit’s Vacant Lots Into Bee Farms.

Laneia is the Executive Editor and founding member of Autostraddle, and you're the reason she's here. She's 37, has two kids, two dogs, one cat, one Megan, and some personal essays.

Laneia has written 907 articles for us.

25 Comments

  1. What if instead we stopped making corny lesbian films?(of course we aren’t, don’t panic, but they sound like the real problem here) Because work likes my haircut to be symmetrical and tattoos are expensive and I’m crazy allergic to being pierced at all AND MY CHUNKY GLASSES CAN’T DO ALL THE SIGNIFYING ALONE!

  2. Flannel, as much as I love it, is fairly useless as a lesbian signifier these days anyway, as I think has been lamented on AS before (along with the co-opting of what we might consider queer-signifying haircuts). What with the ’90s being back in vogue, women of every persuasion are wearing flannel AND IT IS DOING MY HEAD IN. The straights have already decided for us that it’s no longer a lesbian signifier. Grrr.

  3. I live in Seattle, wearing flannel is like wearing pants, it just maintains the social order.

    Also I get why it’s a tired stereotype, but why come for flannel when you could go after ugly shoes. Ugly shoes are a bigger problem for the community, plantar fasciitis notwithstanding.

  4. I think we all see Erin’s article for what it is: a blatant attempt to undermine flannel flagging in order to push her own Lacroix flagging agenda. I am in total support of this.

    I have no problem with value-for-money jokes about flannel within the lesbian community, but obvs if straight people think they can co-opt these they can fuck right off.

  5. Thank you for including the article on mindfulness! I’ve had multiple health providers suggest I “try practicing mindfulness” to address my mental health issues while providing zero guidance or details. I’ve taken up the practice (no pun intended?) that whenever a health provider suggests mindfulness, I ask them to explain what that means practically to them and what I should actually do rather than letting them shuffle me out the door.

    • Check out local mental health facilities and professionals for Dialectical Behaviour Therapy (DBT) groups. Originally created for people with Borderline Personality Disorder but is now widely used for so much more. You will learn how to practice mindfulness. It saved my life.

    • Lady dorito sounds like a really cringeworthy euphemism.

      (I don’t know anything about the actual lady doritos debacle because I can’t find the energy to reac/care every time there is completely unnecessary gendering of things).

  6. Frankly I’m more concerned about the word flannel being a signifier for PLAID, but to each her own. Plaid looks good on me, plaid is “dressy” enough for work, plaid transcends the butch/femme dichotomy, and plaid is 1000x better than whatever everyone was wearing on the L Word.

    • I’m with you on it being plaid not flannel.

      I think I have something innate that makes think about buying plaid shirts even though I don’t like the way I look in them. I like way other women look in them and I have to keep reminding myself, as with other clothes, that I should not buy clothes on the basis that I find other women attractive in them, because I am not my own type.

  7. Flannel was maybe the first lesbian signifier I knew so when I was younger I (regrettably) avoided it like the plague. Took me way too long to learn to love it and I’m not ready to give it up quite yet.

  8. I’m nearly 50, I’m butch (nope, no “confusion” when anyone looks at me), and I haven’t worn a flannel shirt since circa 1997. So much for signifiers.

    Admittedly, yes, between the mid-80s and then, it was pretty much my go-to weekend wear.

    …I do still have one, which I only wear in wintertime and I’m working on my car (WHAT signifier?) and I need something warmish with long sleeves that I don’t care about ruining. Come to think of it, I think I’ve had THAT flannel shirt since 1997.

Contribute to the conversation...

You must be logged in to post a comment.