He Said/We Said: Holiday Hauteness


dapperQ is excited to present our 15th edition of He Said/We Said (HS/WS) and just in time for the approaching holidays. Oh, you know, the holidays: That time of year better known to some as the season where family members gather around and discuss how so-and-so would look prettier if so-and-so would “just wear a dress.” Well, we’ve rounded up a group of New York City’s most stylish androgynous and masculine gender-queer models to show granny how holiday hotness is done — sans the dress.

For a quick refresher on the HS/WS series, check out creatress mastermind Anita Dolce Vita’s plan behind the HS/WS magic:

“The models fashion their very own looks – I give the inspiration, they give the interpretation. They come to the shoot camera ready: hair, make-up, their own clothes, accessories and props. I didn’t want the series to reflect how to recreate menswear from an individual stylist’s point of view. It’s always a wonderful surprise to see what each model came up with and all of the different translations of the same inspiration.”

Photographer Leslie Van Stelten, along with Anita Dolce Vita, selected the Roberto Cavalli A/W 2013-14 menswear line as inspiration.



8/15/13 Dapper Q

From left to right: Galina Grebenyuk, Merike Palmiste, Anna Gothard, Reva McEachern ,Sam Brooks, Ryley Pogensky, Mila Polyak

Merike Palmiste

8/15/13 Dapper Q

Age: 27
Preferred Gender Pronoun: She/her
Occupation: Student, model, event director

Jacket, Prada. Shirt, Banana Republic. Jeans, Diesel. Bow-tie, American Apparel. Shoes, Dr. Martens.

Song that best describes your look:

“I Wanna Dance with Somebody” by Whitney Houston

Whose wardrobe (celebrity or otherwise!) would you raid?


Tell me about what it meant for you on a personal level to be involved in a project like He Said/We Said.

In my country [Russia], the government and people don’t accept gays. So, here in the U.S. — for the first time — I do not have to hide my orientation, which is cool!

Mila Polyak

8/15/13 Dapper Q

Age: 25
Preferred Gender Pronoun: I’ve never been bothered if someone mistakenly called me sir, or used the gender pronouns his, he or him. I don’t usually correct them because it’s fun, but I usually go by ‘her’ and ‘she.’
Occupation: DJ, bartender, model, Registered Nurse

Shirt, Calibrate. Vintage handmade red silk tie. Vest, H&M. Pants, Calvin Klein. Shoes, Clarks

Outfit sobriquet:

Night Crawler

Whose wardrobe would you raid?

Ryan Gosling. That man knows how to dress.

What accessory/article of clothing can you not live without? Why?

I can’t live without my vest; it accentuates any plain v-neck . I also cannot live without a good dress shirt. I have too many in my closet.

Talk a bit about your favorite moment(s) from the shoot.

My favorite moment was when Leslie was adjusting the lighting to get the right shot for my particular location. As someone who has worked with her before as a model, I enjoyed watching the creative process occur within her as she was shooting me because she knew what she wanted to bring out in me in the photographs. Every model likes to know that the photographer was happy with their shots. I also enjoyed the moment when all the models gathered together for the group shot. We had all been chatting with one another during the shoot and got to know one another. So, when we all got together it was fun because at the beginning we were strangers and at the end of the day we were all laughing and joking. A sense of comradery transpired.

Anna Gothard

8/15/13 Dapper Q

Age: 25
Preferred Gender Pronoun: She/her, but I don’t mind if people use other pronouns.
Occupation: My day job? I’m a pre-school teacher. What do I really do? I am a performer, singer and songwriter. I have a queer folk-pop duo called Anna/Kate with my partner. We just performed our original song cycle, “I Run with You,” which incorporated our original music and storytelling, exploring the conversation on finding queer community and queer love.

I am not ashamed to say that almost everything I am wearing is from thrift shops — except the shoes. Thrift shops are gems in this expensive city! My hair was cut by PHRESH CUTZ, a queer pop-up barber shop based in Brooklyn.

Song that best describes your look:

“Feeling Good” by Nina Simone

Whose wardrobe would you raid?

For daytime wear, the boys of Mumford and Sons. For nighttime wear, I have to give them credit, the boys of One Direction.

What accessory/article of clothing can you not live without? Why?

Button ups! Button ups! Button ups! They are easy to teach in, perform in and party in!

Tell me about what it meant for you on a personal level to be involved in a project like He Said/We Said.

I am a big fan of He Said/We Said, and was honored to be a part of it. I feel I share the same frustration with many who present in a masculine way and are female bodied. It is tricky trying to find clothing that fits and that is not always in the men’s section. But He Said/We Said is a great spread that gives insight from other members of the queer community on places and ways to explore queer-wear.

Reva McEachern

8/15/13 Dapper Q

Age: 29
Preferred Gender Pronoun: She
Occupation: Learning and Development Manager, Razorfish Principal, REVA Digital Media LLC
Outfit: Top, Zara. Blazer, Poleci. Pants, Philip Lim. Shoes, Steve Madden
Outfit sobriquet:

The Stranger, which is also the name of my favorite book.

Song that best describes your look:

“Cold Blooded” by Rick James

Where are your favorite places to shop?

All Saints, Zara and Club Monaco. I’m a little bit upscale, a little bit rock and roll.

Tell me about what it meant for you on a personal level to be involved in a project like He Said/We Said.

I felt like it was a great opportunity to showcase androgyny in a different way. I don’t think of myself as either masculine or feminine, so I wanted to be able to represent folks that live in that undefined space.

Galina Grebenyuk

8/15/13 Dapper Q

Preferred Gender Pronoun: Masculine or feminine pronouns
Occupation: Photographer, artist, model, and bartender
Outfit: Jacket, Armani Exchange. Pants, Zara. Shoes, Fred Perry. Shirt, Patricia Pepe. Tie, DKNY. Belt, Zara
Outfit sobriquet:

Lonely Boy

Whose wardrobe would you raid?

I would raid David Beckham’s wardrobe.

Tell me about what it meant for you on a personal level to be involved in a project like He Said/We Said.

I am very grateful to be a part of such amazing project. I hope I will be an inspiration to someone who, as dapperQ founder Susan Herr said, is dressing up to “fight the good fight each day.” For me, it’s all simple. I see myself as male inside of a female body. But, for those in the world who don’t look beyond the physical, it has to be shown in variable ways. One of them is fashion.

Talk a bit about your favorite moment(s) from the shoot.

There was an incredible, positive energy on the set and in general throughout the day of shoot. Leslie was very hands-on, warm and supportive. I had worked with many photographers in the past, but I have enjoyed working with Leslie especially. Also it was great to meet Anita Dolce Vita in person. Other models were incredible as well. That Sunday I was surrounded by same spirited and minded folks. I could easily explain myself, tell who I am or why I am attracted to women without other people rolling their eyes. There was mutual understanding between all of us. For a moment, I have forgotten there was a need to “fight the good fight each day.”

Ryley Pogensky

8/15/13 Dapper Q

Age: 24
Preferred Gender Pronoun: He/They
Occupation: Freelance writer, promoter
Outfit: Full outfit, H&M. Shoes, Calvin Klein
Song that best describes your look:

“Ain’t too Proud to Beg” by The Temptations. The patterns were making me feel the 60’s and Motown vibe.

Whose wardrobe would you raid?

That is such a tough question. I have always loved how Pharell Williams can pull off both the causal skater look and the incredibly dapper.

What accessory/article of clothing can you not live without? Why?

Hats. All of the hats.

Tell me about what it meant for you on a personal level to be involved in a project like He Said/We Said.

As an aspiring model who has had to face mainstream agencies and photographers telling me that they had no place for me, it is affirming to see projects like He Said/We Said come to light. Being able to work with queer designers, like-minded queer artists, and queer publications is amazing. What dapperQ has done and continues to do to show how relevant our community is to the fashion world is irreplaceable.

Sam Brooks

8/15/13 Dapper Q

Age: 30
Preferred Gender Pronoun: I prefer not to have a label in general.
Occupation:  Pastry chef, owner ; SamiCakes boutique LLC
Outfit:Black blazer, Express. Camo button-up, Old Navy. Jeans, Guess. Shoes, Dr. Martens
Song that best describes your look:

“Tom Ford” by Jay-Z

Whose wardrobe would you raid?

Johnny Depp

Where are your favorite places to shop?

G-Star, Diesel

What accessory/article of clothing can you not live without? Why?

Can’t live without a hat because it’s a staple in my wardrobe


Photographer: Leslie Van Stelten
Photography Assistant: Michael Beard
Series Producer: Anita Dolce Vita
Hair: Colette Lee Morales
Makeup: Lauren O’Jea and Lauryn Marie More
Location: Bizarre Bar, Brooklyn

Before you go! Autostraddle runs on the reader support of our AF+ Members. If this article meant something to you today — if it informed you or made you smile or feel seen, will you consider joining AF and supporting the people who make this queer media site possible?

Join AF+!


DapperQ is one of the world’s most widely read digital queer style magazines and is a preeminent voice in queer fashion and beauty. We inspire people of all sexual orientations, gender identities, and gender presentations to think differently about both queer fashion and beauty as art and visual activism, and ultimately have a deeper, more fulfilling relationship with style. In the words of founder Anita Dolce Vita, “dapperQ is a queer fashion revolution, one of the most stylish forms of protest of our generation.”

has written 35 articles for us.


  1. I dig Reva’s look. Too often when folks try to represent ‘genderqueer’ or ‘androgynous’ fashion, they only do it this narrow, specific, masculine sort of way. It’s nice that there’s at least one person in this feature pointing out that you can wear actual visible makeup with a floral shirt and still be doing androgyny. Even her poses are different.

  2. If you all decided that you needed to post say, 50 more photos of this set I would be ok with that decision.

    Good photos, good clothes, gorgeous humans.

  3. I always really love the DapperQ photos, but is it me or are these photos especially wonderful?

  4. i kept thinking if i waited a while i would come up with a more coherent comment but it’s been a few days and that does not seem to be the case so i will just say YES THANK YOU HAPPY HOLIDAYS TO ALL OF YOU INDEED.

  5. Looks like fashion gods are preventing me from commenting on this post, but by god I am Hillary Cli*ton and I shall try again (and I will also win the presidency in 2016…side note)! Provided that hotties like these don’t give me a heart attack before then!

    In any case, borrowing a quote from my good friend Borat, “WaWaWeeWa!!” is all I’m trying to say about these fashionable queer models!

Comments are closed.