Artist reveals undergarments for transitioning bodies

Diamond Naga Siu
Artist Peregrine Hogin worked with designers to develop a new line of gender neutral undergarments.

Language is no longer restricted by he/she grammar. Now, the same can be said for for clothing as artist Peregrine Honig hopes to start a movement with gender neutral, gender fluid and unisex clothes in her new line All Is Fair in Love and Wear.

Honig’s line supports the notion that gender neutral clothing is more than a simple unisex t-shirt or pair of shorts. Tisch freshman David Maginley said the new line of middlewear — Hogin’s term for underwear that is neither lingerie nor full clothing — can accommodate people who do not conform to the gender binary system.

“One of the things that would be helpful for transgender and nonbinary folks is clothing in the gendered style but not in the gendered shape,” Maginley said. “It’s difficult for me to find larger women’s clothes that aren’t expensive, and I’m sure there are transgender boys who are too small for guy clothes, too.”

This gender neutral clothing line is specifically targeted to help transgender bodies in the middle of transitioning. Immersed in the liberal culture of her hometown of San Francisco, Honig has a past of bringing current social issues into her art. Evident in such works as the 2005 series ‘Father Gander’ and the 2014 series ‘Animal Farm,’ a penchant for incorporating aspects of gender and sexuality is consistent. For Honig, the line represents a community she feels connected to, but is not personally a member of, so it is a step outside of her comfort zone. Honig spoke on this point in a phone interview with Today.

“I’m not transgender; I’m a cis female,” said Honig. “So it’s important to understand that I’m learning and trying to tell other people’s stories, and I’m trying to be sensitive to a group that is so under-considered.”

Enlisting the help of partner Laura Treas — a designer of post-plastic surgery lingerie — to aid in the creation of the line, Honig will focus on clothing items that aid those transitioning to neutralize gender specific body parts. These transitioning-specific clothing articles all have the goal of offering more comfortable and stylish undergarment options. Items to be sold in a variety of colors include binders used as female-to-male chest compressors, tuckers designed for a feminine male-to-female physique, packers designed for a more masculine female-to-male physique and male-to-female waist cinches to help define curves.

Silver junior JoJo Davenport believes the new line will allow transgender individuals a more welcoming environment not only in the clothing items themselves, but also while shopping for the pieces.

“I think it’s really important to create clothing that’s comfortable for anyone to wear without having to worry about labels,” Davenport said. “I think that [this] line probably creates a safe space where nobody has to be concerned about, ‘Oh, these are boy/girl clothes,’ which I think is ridiculous anyways, because they’re just clothes.”

Davenport believes pigeonholing clothing is just another unnecessary label in society and hopes these worries will soon be assuaged with the middlewear’s December release date quickly approaching.

“Transgender people are already dealing with so much confusion and being misunderstood, and they don’t need to be told, ‘You’re shopping in the wrong section,’” Davenport said. “Why are we giving clothes a gender? Gender neutral clothing is the way to go.”

 

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