I am a 5’7, 130 lbs, gender-queer presenting lesbian public interest attorney. When I am working, I choose to present in masculine attire. Unfortunately, I have always found securing clothing that fit my choice of presentation a difficult task, as stores usually do not carry my size in the men’s section.
One Thursday night, before my Friday court proceeding, everything came to a halt. I went shopping at the usual suspects to find a shirt to wear to court and that’s when I realized not only did they not have my size— again, there were also no people who looked like me in their advertisements all throughout the store. I’d been shopping and subconsciously understanding these facts for over seven years. However, for whatever reason, In that moment I questioned if I, or any other gender-queer presenting person, was on their radar. I questioned if those stores truly really wanted or valued my business.
That night I went online to find a more inclusive brand/company that marketed to me and people like me. While I found a couple of great stores, their prices, unfortunately, were out of my public interest budget. I decided that night that instead of complaining I would figure out a way to make the clothes that I like available to people like me; everyday people, who want to feel seen and valued where they spend, but who also are on a budget.
When I found a connect and could obtain clothes, I also thought about how I could take an idea that came as a result of feeling invisible and undervalued, to uplift the LGBQ/GNCT community. That’s why Pauli’s Room will donate 20% of all proceeds to LGBTQ youth-serving organizations.
Ultimately, the story of Pauli’s Room is the story of taking a bad experience and using it to create a greater good. It is my hope that you will join in the cause.