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Conscious consumers know that the best fashion brands seamlessly blend stylish designs with social activism. On this episode of In The Know: Pink Money, host Teraj (@teraj08) sits down with Sabine Maxine, the founder of A Tribe Called Queer (@atribecalledqueer), to discuss how her brand churns out empowering designs while actively uplifting and representing the BIPOC and LGBTQIA+ communities.
Before it was a fashion brand, A Tribe Called Queer started out as an Instagram page. “I wanted a place where I could highlight what other queer and trans people were doing in the community,” says Sabine. “And then slowly over the years it evolved into a brand, and now a community organization.”
At the heart of A Tribe Called Queer are the clothing and accessories, which offer empowering messages in fun, eye-catching designs, like the “Hella Queer, Hella Proud” T-Shirt, a sticker that reads “The First Pride Was a Riot,” and a fashionable branded black bucket hat. “It’s about what I feel people need to hear and see,” says Sabine. “When people wear the shirt, design, or accessory, other people see it, so it’s really about ‘What’s the message?’” Through her designs, Sabine looks to empower the wearers, and make them feel pride for who they are.
A Tribe Called Queer is a fashion brand at its core, but the brand’s influence spreads far beyond just clothes and accessories. A Tribe Called Queer publishes Fervor Zine, an online publication dedicated to wellness, as well as a couple of podcasts including the upcoming Kinfolk, which according to Sabine, is dedicated to archiving the stories of the elderly members of the BIPOC and LGBTQIA+ communities. “Archiving our stories is important,” says Sabine. “We need to hear more about people, not just celebrities, but everyday people, who are out there living their best lives.”
For Sabine, the community organization aspect of A Tribe Called Queer lives at the forefront of the brand’s mission. Sabine is actively working to finalize the paperwork that would establish her brand as an official community organizer, which would allow her to organize more community programs to support the BIPOC and LGBTQIA+ communities.
When it comes to supporting the LGBTQIA+ community, Sabine encourages people to take the next step beyond supporting queer and trans-owned businesses during Pride season. “This is something that we need all the time,” she says. “We need it all throughout the year. If you’re looking for gifts for birthdays, anniversaries, whatever it is, you can shop our businesses 365 days of the year. I encourage everyone to support all-year-round because we really need it.”
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