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ClexaCon – Interview with the Organizers

ClexaCon is back for 2018! You can find all the details on their website at Fangirl Shirts attended ClexaCon 2017, where we were vendors, panelists and fangirls; you can find our recap here. We’ll be back in 2018!

The ClexaCon 2018 Directors, left to right: Holly, Danielle, Ashley

ClexaCon tweeted this a couple of weeks ago:

Ummm…heck yes! Half of Fangirl Shirts (Sally) lives near the northern half of their route, so we made a plan to meet up for an interview.

Who is behind ClexaCon 2018?

We spoke with the core group of organizers for ClexaCon 2018 – Holly, Ashley and Danielle. In 2017, ClexaCon spoke of themselves almost exclusively as “we” – the group of organizers and volunteers that made the con happen. This year in 2018, they will continue to speak of themselves as “we,” but also a bit more as individual people this year. Meet all the ClexaCon organizers and coordinators here!

We’re glad, because these three are friendly, thoughtful and committed women who made something amazing happen in 2017, and are working hard to bring it back bigger and better in 2018.

First we closed down a Starbucks, so we did the second half of the interview in a grocery store, because fangirls make it work!

Philanthropy and giving back are core values of Fangirl Shirts, and it’s the same for ClexaCon. Official charity partners in 2017 were The Trevor Project, providing suicide prevention and crisis intervention services for LGBTQ youth, and The Tegan and Sara Foundation (beneficiary of the Cocktails for Change event) working for economic justice, health and representation for LGBTQ girls and women. There will be even more charity partners in 2018.

We asked the ClexaCon ladies what their personal philanthropic interests are:

  • Holly is involved in disability rights charities and Alzheimer’s research & treatment organizations
  • Ashley supports nonprofits working to end human trafficking and forced marriages of women and girls
  • Danielle’s primary nonprofit interests are environmental protection and LGBTQ rights

These women are awesome, fun to talk to, and are working tirelessly to bring ClexaCon back in 2018. They’re not in it for fame, fortune, or personal aggrandizement, and that’s very clear when you speak to them in person. ClexaCon surveyed all the attendees from 2017 and is taking the feedback for what people liked and what else people wanted seriously – you’ll see it reflected in the programming for 2018 and continued announcements about what’s coming next.

How ClexaCon Came About

Lexa’s death on The 100 was a turning point for a lot of queer fans who were fed up with seeing characters like themselves be killed on TV. In the case of queer women characters, this inevitably seems to happen after they’ve had sex with another woman. It’s a trope with a name: Bury Your Gays.

Bury Your Gays has its roots in the Hays Code, a set of “morality guidelines” for the movies that started in the 1930’s and was enforced by the Motion Picture Association of America. These so-called “morality guidelines” also spilled over into television and comics. Even though the Hays Code was officially abandoned in 1968, writing punishing endings for LGBTQ characters had become an enduring part of the industry. For more on this, watch the excellent movie The Celluloid Closet.

Back to 2016: there was a record number of LGBTQ character deaths, and the hits just kept coming. Lexa’s death was in many ways the straw that broke the camel’s back, creating a backlash from fans and critics alike who were mad as hell and not going to take it anymore. Holly was talking online with some friends and said “We should have a convention to talk about representation of LGBTQ women in entertainment and the media, and to enable fans to get together in a safe space.” Things just snowballed from there.

The original group quickly realized they would need a lot more help to make the con happen. Ashley and Danielle both saw a tweet from ClexaCon asking if anyone wanted to get involved, they emailed their skill sets to ClexaCon, and signed on to help. As well, an enormous number of volunteers signed up to help.

ClexaCon is a great example of creating the change you want to see in the world.

What’s In Store for 2018?

The official attendee count for ClexaCon 2017 was over 2,200 attendees. The venue for 2018 is the Tropicana, which comes with more capacity and the potential to take over the entire space if enough people sign up. ClexaCon has secured a room block with a great rate for attendees, and you can reserve a room online from their website.

The con has also been expanded. The panels, workshops, photo ops and official party will happen over three days, Friday – Sunday, April 6-8, just like in 2017. There will be additional events on Thursday and Monday that are designed to help promote a safe and welcoming space, and a sense of community and friendships.

One such idea is a Thursday “speed-friending” session, which is like speed-dating but for making friends. If anyone will be coming alone to ClexaCon, this is a great way to meet a large number of people in an organized way to see who you click with, and then have a friend or several to experience the con with.

Other ideas the organizers are fleshing out are a pool party during the con, and post-con on Monday, an outdoor hike.

Tickets went on sale May 22. Half of the VIP classes of tickets were on sale May 22, with the rest to go on sale June 5, 2017. This is so people who want or need to save up and budget for a VIP ticket will have a little more time to do so.

The vendor and artist alley applications are open also, check them out! Fangirl Shirts will be there, and we hope to see everyone again who we met last year, and meet more of you! If you want to volunteer for the con, you can apply here, and this is where to submit a panel idea.

Guest announcements will also be announced as they are finalized. The first guest announcement already happened, and we’re super excited about it. #Fandras

Follow ClexaCon on twitter, tumblr, Instagram, YouTubeFacebook and on the ClexaCon website.

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Kindness Is Contagious

At ClexaCon, we partnered up with others in the Wynonna Earp fandom to present a panel about the fandom, how it came about, and why we think it’s special. You can get the audio podcast of the panel plus several Periscope recordings from our ClexaCon 2017 roundup blog post.

One of the things we discussed during the panel was the “contagious nature of kindness,” and afterward, we decided to do a special shirt for the Earpers to commemorate it. A portion of the proceeds from Kindness Is Contagious will go directly to The Kind Campaign, working to combat girl-against-girl bullying.

We did a followup interview with the panelists. Let’s get to it!

Panelists/Interviewees are in alphabetical order, with their twitter handles and their websites. Give ’em a follow!

FGS: How did you start watching Wynonna Earp?

Bonnie: I started watching Wynonna Earp because I was a Fandras! I followed Emily Andras and got interested in this new show she was making, so I was always on board since day one! I just knew it was going to be good because I loved her work and her sense of humor and how she created badass female characters.

Bridget: Since I cover Canadian TV I had heard about the project pretty early on. I knew Emily Andras was attached to lead it and that she had written some of my very favorite episodes on shows such as Lost Girl and Killjoys. I also knew she knew how to write complex, interesting, funny, smart but flawed women and that Wynonna sounded very much in that same vein. The fact that Emily had other writers like Alexandra Zarowny and Brendon Yorke on staff for Wynonna, giving the show a strong writing room, got me super excited as well because I’m a TV nerd like that. As soon as I got screeners and checked out the first two episodes I knew my instincts were right and I was going to be all in on this one.

Kevin: I’ve been a fan of Emily’s since her Lost Girl days so I was keeping an eye on the development of the show and thanks to our access to press screeners of most Syfy shows I was able to watch the first two episodes about 10 days before the show premiered.

Rebecca:  Emily wrote all of my favourite episodes of Lost Girl, so I knew that any project she was involved with was going to be something that I’d want to watch. She teased on twitter that her new super secret “mystery project” was going to have queer representation in it, and from that moment I knew I was all in.

Sally: I was a huge Lost Girl fan and kept checking Twitter every day to find out what Emily Andras would do next, because I knew that whatever it was, I wanted to watch it.

Valerie Anne: I saw the promos on Syfy and saw that it was quippy with a badass female lead and punched the air. Then a few people asked me if I’d be watching since Emily Andras had promised it was going to “get gay” and even though I was already in, I was suddenly ALL IN knowing Andras was behind the wheel. I have no regrets.

FGS: How and why did you become involved in the fandom?

Bonnie: I started the Wynonna Fans twitter account as a fun place to gather a few fans together to discuss the show and because I was getting excited about it! I hadn’t even seen the show yet, but I just knew it was going to be good. Immediately fans began flocking to the twitter account and the cast followed me, so I just decided to run with it and actively promote the show in hopes of generating enough buzz to help get a Season 2.

Bridget: I never intended to get pulled into the fandom this deep and yet, here I am. I really started to get pulled into fandom events through working with Bonnie and Kevin. They had me on their podcast early on in the show’s run and then publicized a lot of my articles, especially the weekly postmortem interviews with Emily. We three started working on ideas for the fandom, organizing events, twitter campaigns and running ideas past each other a lot. I just got deeper and deeper into the fandom over time, especially after I met so many Earpers at events and realized what wonderful people we have in the Wynonna Earp fandom.

Kevin: I LOVED the first two episodes and knew this was going to be a show that I and other people would want to talk about so I decided to start the Tales of the Black Badge podcast and it all snowballed from there.

Rebecca:  So many of my friends from the Lost Girl fandom jumped on board right away with Wynonna Earp, so it was like a big fandom family right from the start. Sally and I knew from the beginning that Fangirl Shirts would be making Wynonna-inspired designs, and involved in spreading the word about this awesome show. But I had no idea what an incredible, wild and exciting ride it was going to be!

Sally: Fangirl Shirts was pretty certain (99.9999999999999%) that we would like Wynonna Earp, so we followed the cast and the fan accounts, and as soon as we had ideas, we made T-shirts! In 2016 we were invited to attend San Diego Comic-Con as panelists for the “Fangirls Lead The Way” panel that our friend Ed Catto organized, and we got to meet tons of Earpers in person. The Whiskey & Doughnuts video hangouts after the shows aired during Season 1 were also a fun way we met other Earpers virtually.

Valerie Anne: The night of the premiere! I was watching and livetweeting and everyone watching “with” me was so hilarious and fun – we were already latching onto certain lines (stupid Carl!) and bonding over our love of these characters we just met. Then I started recapping Wynonna Earp and through that found more and more Earpers. Earpers, by nature, have no chill, as you all know, and the tweets, art, fics, jokes, theories, and entire twitter accounts based on body parts and inanimate objects Earpers create on a daily basis never cease to amaze me.

FGS: The fandom has a reputation for being a welcoming, supportive place. How did it get that way? What keeps it going?

Bonnie: From the beginning, I would comb Twitter and look for fans interested in the show and who were tweeting about the show in a positive manner. I found that there were so many fans who were disillusioned with fandoms and with other shows and who were looking for a community and a safe place to land. I wanted to help create an atmosphere on Twitter where everyone could feel safe to just fangirl and fanboy out and connect with others. It helped so much that Emily and the writers created a show that didn’t pit fans against each other from the start. I think we were all just destined to be here as fans of this wonderful show.

Bridget: I think it starts at the top with Emily Andras and the Wynonna Earp cast. The show itself is positive and inclusive and Emily and the cast interact that way on social media as well. In some ways we were very lucky that the show was so small the first couple of weeks because it really helped solidify the core group of Earpers that were there at the start. Those Earpers took the cast/crew’s lead of being a welcoming and positive place and that knowledge and those values just continue to be spread throughout the fandom.

Kevin: I think those of us who were involved early got to see that Emily and the cast members were VERY interactive and approachable on Twitter so it created a very special feeling that we were all part of something special so we appreciated it and therefore felt we were a part of that and we wanted to see an environment that we were proud to be a part of so therefore we were very conscious of the people themselves. We identified with them as much as the show so we were genuinely concerned with doing what was best for all.

Rebecca:  Positive energy feeds off of positive energy, and this fandom has tons of it going around. There was so much excitement and hope within the early stages of the fandom, and I think that it had a contagious effect. That, and the fact that the creators, writers, and cast are all very present and positive on social media, has helped created this amazing atmosphere of support and inclusion. Everyone knows what it’s like to not fit in somewhere, and it’s been wonderful to see this fandom promote the message that everyone who loves the show belongs here. 

Sally: I think the people who were early adopters of the show led by example, being welcoming and nice and uplifting new people who started to engage with the community that had formed. These things tend to snowball, and the values that get promoted and encouraged from the beginning often stick. As well, there were relatively few plot situations in Wynonna Earp Season 1 that pitted fans on opposite sides of an issue or relationship. We were all rooting for every character. (Well, maybe not Stupid Carl.)

Valerie Anne: I think it’s a combination of things; it’s the show being the kind of show that appeals to smart, funny people who appreciate a well-told story with complex characters. It’s people who love seeing a reluctant hero kick ass, her little sister fall in love with the new girl in town, a legendary gunslinger come to life. The show has so much heart, and the people who love it the most do, too. I think part of the reason it has managed to stay so positive is that the leaders of it are so positive and kind and welcoming. From Emily Andras and the official Wynonna Earp twitter account, to Bonnie and Kevin, no one has tried to pit “ships” or “faves” against each other, everything is celebrated, everyone is seen and heard.

FGS: Tell us a specific story about kindness in this fandom that has especially stuck with you.

Bonnie: There was a fan who was really nervous about watching the show with her parents and how they would react to WayHaught. She sought help and advice from the fandom and I watched as dozens and dozens of Earpers came to her aide and messaged her with words of encouragement and help. It was so heartwarming to see how many people cared – even though they’d never met her at all. It was then that I knew we had an incredible special fandom here.

Bridget: There are so many stories that it’s hard to pick just one, and that’s just going on my own personal experiences alone with other fans. However, I will say that one in particular I witnessed at ClexaCon, a convention attended by many, many Earpers, stands out to me. There was an Earper who attended that was disabled and had worries about attending a convention and how she was going to get around to see panels, get autographs and attend photo ops. I witnessed not only one, but several Earpers, helping her throughout the con to make sure she could do everything she wanted to do. They didn’t need to do that. No one was requiring it of them. They just did it out of the goodness of their hearts to make sure a fellow Earper go to experience the con to the fullest just as they were. It was awesome.

Kevin: Because of the popularity of the podcast and the podcast Twitter account folks share SO many great stories that it’s impossible to pick only one. One thing that many Earpers are doing is to offer things such as comic books, posters, etc. that they may haven’t gotten signed themselves to other folks who haven’t been able to attend one of the conventions where the cast has been a guest. They want to see others who may not have the financial means to attend be able to experience the fun that they did.

Rebecca:  It’s so hard to pick just one story, but I think one of my very favourite things to see in this fandom is the outpouring of love, acceptance and support that you’ll see on social media any time anyone mentions they’re having a bad day or going through a rough time. Whether it’s losing a job, health problems, relationship issues, losing a loved one, coming out of the closet, or anything else someone might be struggling with, the Earpers are always there to help you through it. 

Sally: When Fangirl Shirts ran conducted a raffle to award two Peace Maker shirts signed by the Earp cast (the “raffle tickets” were actually donations to Everytown for Gun Safety), we had so many people who donated to the raffle but told us privately that they didn’t want to win the shirts, and if they did win, could we choose another Earper who hadn’t had a chance to go to conventions or meet the cast. They simply wanted to support the cause and the effort, and give someone else a chance. So generous! You know who you are – thank you!

Valerie Anne: Gosh there are too many to count. Aside from the extreme kindness and support Emily Andras has shown me, one of the first times I TRULY felt how special and wonderful this fandom is was during NYCC 2016. One night, we had a little Earper meetup, and everyone who showed up was unbelievably kind and smart and fun. And then I called into the Whiskey and Doughnuts chat to give everyone an update from the bar and everyone THERE was so kind and smart and fun. And though that’s one of my favorite nights, I’ll also never forget our panel at ClexaCon, where they had to move us to a new room because so many people showed up, and how everyone in the audience was so thoughtful and supportive, and everyone on the panel made me so proud and honored to be moderating such wonderful humans.

FGS: What if strife develops in the fandom – as visible people who contribute to the fandom, how will you handle it?

Bonnie: I have always tried to lead by example and will continue to do so. Strife is not always bad and can be a good learning experience for everyone involved if handled correctly. I think though that there are enough fans in the fandom who have experienced the benefit of being a part of such a loving and inclusive and positive fandom that everyone will work together like a family to keep it that way.

Bridget: I think one of the biggest ways is to lead by example and continue to treat others the way I want to be treated – with kindness and respect. There are bound to be disagreements in Season 2, whether it’s over a particular storyline or a direction one of our beloved characters are being taken in, but I’m also sure that there’s going to be plenty that we’re all going to love about the show. That’s what we can focus on. Also disagreements aren’t bad, and can even be constructive, but we just need to make sure that they are happening in a way that isn’t hurtful or disrespectful.

Kevin: As the show’s popularity grows there are going to be more fandom members who may not share the same morals or values that the early adopters do. That’s a natural thing and all we can do is to treat people the way we would want to be treat and accept how other people choose to react to that. We can’t control other people. We can only control our reactions to them. Be respectful and accept differing opinions. Always try to do what’s best for the show. It’s about us and not about me.

Rebecca:  After only one season so far, the solidarity of the Earper fandom hasn’t really been tested yet in terms of storylines or character development that could potentially cause tension or division. I believe that the positive, constructive voices need to be supported and echoed, and the more people we have within the fandom that are doing just that, the better we’ll be able to handle any negativity that might try and creep in.

Sally: If the strife is about storyline, then it’s important to model respectful dialogue that acknowledges other people’s points of view even if you don’t share it. Social media doesn’t always lend itself well to that type of discussion – but it can, sometimes. If the strife is about shirts, of course, then we’ll handle it. 😉

Valerie Anne: Gosh I wish I could promise I’d wave a magic wand and ban all strife from the Wynonna Earp fandom, but unfortunately as the fanbase grows (which is a good thing!) and the seasons go on (also good!), we’re bound to run into a hiccup or two. My goal in situations like that is to lift up the positive voices. Let them drown out the negative – I know we’ll outnumber them. Address any major issues the best we can, but mostly just keep reminding each other what makes our fandom special, and focusing on the things about the show (and each other!) we love the most.

FGS: What super special fun stuff will you be doing in the fandom as Season 2 premieres?

Bonnie: More of everything!!! More giveaways, more games, more live tweeting, more Whiskey & Doughnuts hangouts, MORE MORE MORE!

Bridget: In Season 2 I’ll be continuing my weekly episode interviews with Emily Andras. In addition to that I’ll continue to have interviews with the cast, writers and other people involved with the show for readers at The TV Junkies. Since I can never seem to write about Wynonna Earp enough I’m sure I’ll have some other opinion pieces or fun pieces sprinkled in there along the way as well.

Kevin: Aside from appreciating the wonderful community and TV show that we’ve been blessed with I think I’m going to just enjoy the ride and look forward to welcoming new members of the fandom family and get to know some of the existing members a bit more. Life is too short not to live in the moment and appreciate how good we have it.

Rebecca:  We’re looking forward to many new shirt designs as season 2 progresses! We’re always looking for fun ways to promote the show to new viewers, and fan gear is a great way to be able to do that. We also love creating designs that are a subtle shout out to the fandom, filled with in-jokes and stuff you need to be an Earper to appreciate fully. There are also a few cons that Fangirl Shirts has its eye on, coming up. Getting to travel, attend conventions and meet other fans is so much fun, I can’t wait to do it again.

Sally: We are constantly brainstorming what cool shirt designs we could come up with, and talking with designers in the fandom about collaborations. We’ll probably do more fun giveaways and fundraisers as the year goes on. And puns! Lots of puns. Puns are fun. Right? Right? Hey, is this thing on?

Valerie Anne: I’ll be recapping Wynonna Earp this season over at, and even though I wrote a piece when Season 1 went up on Netflix, I surely won’t be able to wait until June to write something else about this fabulous show. And of course, tweeting until my fingers fall off like I’m some kind of revenant.

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The Twelve Days of Wynonna Shirts

Hello #Earpers! We are SO EXCITED for the return of Wynonna Earp on June 9, 2017! To celebrate, we give you THE TWELVE DAYS OF WYNONNA SHIRTS. On the first day of Earpmas, Wynonna gave to me…

Each day we’re going to showcase a Wynonna Earp shirt. Some will be ours, some will be other people’s, some will be new, some will be old (but good), and sometimes there will be discounts (follow our twitter for discounts – @fangirlshirts)! Watch this space while we update every day!

Day One – Wynonna and her Motorcycle

The real love story on Wynonna Earp is…Wynonna and her motorcycle. We partnered with Jordan from Atomic Octopus Designs on this awesome new shirt! You can get this in nearly every color and style. Check it out, and also check out Jordan’s website (which links to her Redbubble store), and follow her on instagram and twitter for more awesome fan products about Wynonna Earp and more!

Day Two – Official Wynonna Earp Shirts

Wynonna Earp has an official store on Threadless! You can get shirts with the official show title logo, several drawn in the style of the comics, and some stylized designs that are totally cool. Check them out and buy them!

Day Three – Black Badge Division

Special edition Black Badge Division – caps, mugs, tanks, V-necks, hoodies!
Main catalog – Black Badge Division crewneck T-shirts
Black Badge Division was one of our first Wynonna Earp Designs during Season 1. We loved the badge that Deputy Marshal Dolls shows Wynonna, which represents a special cross-border task force with both the Canadian and US flags. If you want a short-sleeved unisex or women’s cut crewneck T-shirt, you can order it from our main catalog (along with stickerswhy not make it a ConPack?). If you want other styles, including caps, snapbacks, tank tops, pullover and full zip hoodies, check out the Black Badge Division special edition collection.

Today (5/28/17) only, you can get 10% off your own BBD! Check the @fangirlshirts twitter for the links and codes.

Day Four – Purgatory Sheriff’s Department Softball Team

One of our more recent collaborations was with Coral, Carol and Dre, who designed this awesome shirt. We interviewed the trio about their idea and why they love Wynonna Earp and softball, read the interview here!

Get the Purgatory Sheriff’s Department Softball Team shirt in many colors and styles – traditional raglan, tank tops, hoodie, V-necks, crewneck shirts and more here!

Day Five – Fandom Designers

There are so many talented fan artists out there. Today we are showcasing three Earper fan artists who make cool T-shirts and merchandise – both for Wynonna Earp fans and other fandoms!

Day Six – Kindness Is Contagious

At ClexaCon, we partnered up with others in the Wynonna Earp fandom to present a panel about the fandom, how it came about, and why it’s special. You can get the audio podcast of the panel, plus several Periscope recordings from our ClexaCon 2017 roundup blog post.

One of the things we discussed during the panel was the “contagious nature of kindness,” and afterward, we decided to do a special shirt for the Earpers to commemorate it. A portion of the proceeds from Kindness Is Contagious will go directly to The Kind Campaign, working to combat girl-against-girl bullying.

And special bonus: we did an interview with the panelists and you can read it here!

Day Seven – WayHaught Vegas

Katherine Barrell (who plays Officer Nicole Haught on Wynonna Earp) was the first guest to sign on for ClexaCon 2017, and when Dominique Provost-Chalkey also was announced, we knew that Vegas was going to be WayHaught. So we designed a special shirt for to celebrate this awesome relationship. Now that ClexaCon 2017 is over, it’s vintage but you can still pick one up! Check our twitter @fangirlshirts for a discount today only, June 1!

Special bonus content:  we interviewed the ClexaCon 2018 directors recently, and you can read about it here!

Viva WayHaught Vegas!

Day Eight – Wynonna Love and WayHaught Wordclouds

Our first ever collaboration with a fandom artist was none other than Bonnie, @WynonnaFans herself! Bonnie made herself a Wynonna Love shirt and we loved it (pun always intended), so we asked if she’d want to make it available to more Earpers. She said yes, and for good measure she made a WayHaught wordcloud also – who doesn’t want to wear a shirt that says “You’re A Lesbian Not A Unicorn,” right?

Check out both of the wordcloud designs, and check our twitter for a one-day only discount code link for June 2!

Day Nine – Top Shelf

“It’s Top Shelf, man. It’s top Shelf.” An Earper came to us with an idea and a request – how about a subtle shirt that didn’t even say Wynonna Earp on it, but instead, said Top Shelf. A fun, low-key way to identify other fans of the show. We loved the idea and made this design. The font is reminiscent of a certain well-known whiskey brand, which we think Wynonna would appreciate.

Check the Fangirl Shirts twitter for today’s discount link!

Day Ten – Tales of the Black Badge and Whiskey & Doughnuts

Bonnie and Kevin do a lot of work on behalf of the fandom – they give countless hours of their time, and energy to put together podcasts, hangouts, run giveaways, travel to cons, and so on. Sure, it’s amazing fun – but it’s also a lot of time and money behind the scenes. They started a Patreon to help defray some of their costs, and one of the perks for patreons is a specially designed shirt. It’s all business in the front, and a party in the back! This shirt, designed by Jordan from Atomic Octopus Designs, features the podcast on the front as a badge, and the Whiskey & Doughnuts Video Hangouts on the back. You can buy one today in many different colors and styles!

Day Eleven – Earp Nicknames

From the mouths of babes – or in this case, from the typing fingers connected to Emily Andras’ brain.
These nicknames for fans of the actors on the show Wynonna Earp cracked us up when we read them. (In fact, she originally suggested them as an alternative to Fandras.) We asked Emily if we could put them on a shirt, and she said sure! So, are you a ScroFANhoe? FANderson? DomistheBomb? KatPack? Do you think Tim is Also Good? And hey hey hey, we also snuck in a little extra Fandras, because we’re like that. Get yours!

Day Twelve – Peace Maker

Almost a year ago, there was a devastating mass shooting at an LGBTQ nightclub in Orlando. We wanted to do something, so we designed the Peace Maker shirt. It’s the name of Wynonna’s gun turned into a pride flag and written to indicate “One who makes peace.” 100% of the proceeds from Peace Maker go directly to Everytown for Gun Safety. In the past year, shirt sales have raised over $3,000 for Everytown. Here’s a blog post from last year about it.

We live in a world where scary things happen. And much as we might wish it were so, we don’t have an Amazon posing as an antiquities expert to come to our rescue, a Kryptonian refugee working as a reporter who will fly out the window to save us, or a descendant of a famous lawman who will use her supernatural gun to slay our demons.

We have to be each others’ heroes. We have to save ourselves.

But you know what we do have? We have each other. We have people in the world who work to make the world safer and kinder. We have people who write and make stories come to life that inspire us and show us how we can overcome our demons, be brave, and protect each other.

We have the power of love.

Thank you to everyone who makes this show happen. Thank you to all the fans. Thank you to everyone who has supported Fangirl Shirts. And thank you to everyone who is part of making the world a better place. We can’t wait for Season 2 of Wynonna Earp.

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Canada Fangirl

We love Canada. There’s a lot to love about it – free health care, poutine, a welcoming environment for refugees, maple syrup, equal rights for women, doughnuts, TV, the list goes on and on…

When we love something at Fangirl Shirts, we put it on a T-shirt. Behold our “Canada Fangirl” shirt! Get yours in plenty of time to wear it for Canada Day (July 1). This year is “Canada 150” – that’s right, this year is the 150th birthday of Canada.

As always, we donate a portion of every shirt sale to nonprofits working to make the world a better place for girls and women. One of our nonprofit beneficiaries is the Canadian Women’s Foundation, working to help women and girls out of poverty and violence, and into confidence.

While there are many things we love about the country of Canada as a whole, and we could devote an entire essay to that topic, you probably know us best as fangirls of strong female characters in TV shows and the movies. You’ll find a lot of strong, three-dimensional female characters in Canadian TV shows, so it’s no surprise that these are some of the shows we love so much we’ve made T-shirts about them:

We also have watched and loved shows that we haven’t (yet?) made shirts for, including Bomb Girls, Rookie Blue, and X Company.

Check out The TV Junkies’ The Women Behind Canadian TV series, a fantastic multi-post series of interviews with women who create Canadian TV. Bridget Liszewski has 30 interviews (and counting!) posted in this series, as well as this analysis about gender representation behind the scenes.

For your enjoyment:  here’s one of our favorite fanvids from 2013 about some of our favorite Canadian TV shows, created and expertly mashed up by SurrenderToRandomnness, set to “Canadian, Please” by gunnarolla and Julia Bentley.

Tell us YOUR favorite things about Canada in the comments! And get a Canada Fangirl shirt today and wear it proudly, eh?

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Purgatory Softball Team

Happy Spring! The return of spring every year is a renewal of life, a celebration of the abundance of beauty and bounty on Earth, and of course – SOFTBALL SEASON.

Both of your Fangirl Shirts co-founders have played and loved softball over the years, ranging from summer kids’ leagues in our youths to managing and playing on adult recreational teams. Now, we are excited to be teaming up with some super-cool and creative Earpers to bring you a new wicked cool design they came up with!

One of Fangirl Shirts’ nonprofit beneficiaries is the Women’s Sports Foundation, which is dedicated to creating leaders by ensuring all girls access to sports. We believe that sports are fun and contribute to good health and confidence, and confer lifelong benefits for girls and women. We’re happy to be able to partner with the awesome creators of this shirt to bring you some sport-themed fangirl apparel.

Check out the baseball shirts and also the short-sleeve, long-sleeve, hoodie and V-neck shirts! And of course, the tank tops.

Officer Nicole Haught wears number 404 – because it’s standard operating procedure.
We’ve done an interview with Coral, Carol and Dre, the fabulous minds who came up with the concept and artwork for the Purgatory Sheriff’s Department Softball team.

From left to right: Carol, Dre, Coral
FGS: How did you hear about Wynonna Earp and start watching it?

Coral: A dear friend of mine who is also into SyFy as much as I am had been watching it. She called me and told me I needed to start watching because it was an amazing SyFy show that was cleverly written with a great lesbian storyline. We have the same taste in TV shows so I knew it had to be good.

Carol: I saw the ads for it, but the ads didn’t grab me. Syfy has some stinkers, and I thought Wynonna Earp was going to be a Sharknado Syfy-style stinker. Coral saw the show and told me to run, not walk to the nearest TV to see it. I did, and I lurve the show.

Dre: If I remember correctly, I think Coral and Carol told me about it. Since it’s filmed in Calgary, 2.5 hrs away from me, I thought, what the hell, right? WRONG!! You think I could find it ANYWHERE on TV?? NO ONE PICKED IT UP, except for this small Ontario channel that I couldn’t get access to so I had to stream it! It didn’t take me very long. I didn’t fall in love right away (don’t throw anything sharp), I did come to love it by the time it ended though. I’ve since watched it again and now that Space has picked it up, looks like I’ll be watching it one more time just in time for season 2! 🙂

FGS: What inspired you to design the Purgatory Softball Team shirt?

Coral: I will have to defer to Carol on this one. It was when she was here in Albuquerque, helping take care of me after my fourth shoulder surgery. I remember the discussions and brainstorming, but was taking a lot of pain meds.

Carol: I took time off work to fly out to help Coral after her shoulder surgery. We ended up watching Wynonna Earp reruns the entire time. Coral had the idea to make a T-shirt. The shirt is inspired by my love of the softball shirts I had as kid in the 70’s, and so the Purgatory Sheriff’s Department Softball Team was born.

FGS: What position do you think Nicole would play? Would Waverly join the team, or would she cheer from the sidelines? What about the others – Dolls, Doc, Wynonna, Nedley, Champ, Stupid Carl…?

We envisioned that the PSD softball team would play others such as the Fire Department. Also, the Revenants would have their own team with Bobo as captain. The Revenants would not stick to the rules and eventually try to kill someone, so the game would probably not make it to the 4th inning.

  • Wynonna as pitcher
  • Waverly as catcher or softball groupie
  • Doc at first base or right field
  • Nedley at second
  • Dolls at third
  • Nicole at shortstop
  • Emily Andras as coach
  • (FGS: maybe Champ and Gus could join the outfield? Clootie could be the umpire, as long as they dig up her salt flat and place her gently behind home plate. Agent Lucado could also help enforce the rules, as long as she doesn’t burn Purgatory down to the ground…)

FGS: Did/do you play softball? Tell us about that!

Coral: I played fast-pitch softball in high school at second base, then slowpitch for years after high school at shortstop until my shoulder surgeries. Fun fact: I did get a chance to play second base in 1996 for a semi-professional women’s baseball team, the Michigan Stars.

Here’s what happened: I was living in Tucson, Arizona, which hosted the national Women’s Semi-Professional Baseball Tournament. My roommate was friends with some of the players on the Michigan Stars. I went down to the baseball fields to do some lady watching lady baseball watching. While there, my roommate’s friends introduced me to the rest of the Michigan Stars players. We had a good time talking and they asked if I wanted to sit in their dugout.

One of their players broke her hand in last game of the first day of the tournament in the last inning. They needed another player or would have to forfeit the rest of the weekend. They didn’t have another player, so they asked me to fill in. I hadn’t played baseball since Carol and I played Little League when we were kids. They threw a uniform at me and the umpire told me I had five minutes to get it on or they would need to forfeit. I had to change quickly in a tiny Port-O-Pottie (I’m sure it was rocking back and forth with me trying to hurry and get dressed before the official called it).

They put me on second base and I was lucky enough to make all three outs (grounder turning a double play and then a pop up). Since their player was out the rest of the weekend, they needed me to play Saturday and Sunday. I was terrified of hitting. These girls pitched 47 miles an hour…I know this because our pitcher won the pitching speed competition.

That night I grabbed my softball bat (the only bat I had) and went to the batting cages to hit baseballs. It was not pretty. I did get one hit to center field off a fastball, and then the other pitchers figured out I really didn’t play baseball and threw curve balls, knuckle balls, anything but a fastball. After that, I never got on base again because I couldn’t read the pitches. It was one of the best experiences of my life, a fun bunch of mostly lesbian women.

Carol: Yes, Coral and I played. I played shortstop in high school. Our senior year, we won our conference championship, but lost in the quarter finals going for the state title. I played women’s slow pitch for years first at shortstop and then in left field. Now I play occasionally at second base.

Dre: I played softball back in the day when a bunch of friends from school convinced me to play with them. Loved it. I played catcher and then eventually left field. I played for about ten years, I think, but then went back to my first love, soccer. I played soccer all my life = at University for a year, and we went to western finals once. Never made nationals but oh well…

These shirts fit like a glove. A softball glove, of course!
FGS: Dre, tell us about your work in T-shirts!

Dre: The company I work for is called Creative Giant, located in Edmonton, Alberta. We do all sorts of shirts, hoodies, sweats, jackets, towels, jerseys, etc. Whatever you want on it, as long as I have good art or a nice, clean picture to work with, I can put it on anything. I’ve made a few shirts for myself – never thought of actually doing anything above and beyond that until this happened. I have tons of ideas in my head. 🙂

FGS: How did you three meet each other?

Coral: We met Dre at the Xenite Retreat, I believe through our friend Sandy. Sandy is a Scottish Xenite I had met at the last Xena Convention. There are 5 of us that became great friends at the Xenite Retreat (Dre from Canada, Carol from California, Jess from California, Amy from England, and Sandy from Scotland). New technology has bridged distance and time to allow us to talk daily via Facebook messenger. I can’t imagine not talking with these ladies. I feel very grateful to have all of them in my life. We have celebrated triumphs and supported losses for and with each other. Carol and I have ladies from the original Xena days who are friends for life as well. This is what a fandom is about. The show is the common interest but the friendships are what last long after the show is over.

Carol: We met Dre last year through a friend at a Xenite Retreat. There are six of us that met and had a blast. We talk every day. We will be meeting back up shortly for the 2nd annual Xenite Retreat, and then in June we will all be vacationing together in Scotland. Our other friends are from England and Scotland. For me, the fandom is much more about the friendships you gain through a show or mutual interest. Priceless.

Dre: Yep, Xenite Retreat last year, and it still boggles my mind how I had never met them before since Sandy and I have known each other for seven years. Better late than never, though. We’ve got such a great year coming up for our group. It’s going to be spectacular and I’m pretty sure there will be many more adventures for us in the future.

FGS: What else do you fangirl over? What are your other fandoms?

Coral: Xena, Wonder Woman, Supergirl (love Sanvers!), Orphan Black, Buffy, Star Trek (especially Voyager), Star Wars, Killjoys, Dark Matter, anything comic book related especially with a strong female character, Person of Interest, and Mass Effect (a video game).

Carol: Wonder Woman and Bionic Woman were the first big ones as a kid. Xena was the first convention I had ever been to. That was 20 years ago and I still have great friends from those conventions. BUFFY!! Angel, Firefly, Carmilla, Lost Girl, Wynonna Earp, Supergirl, Orphan Black, Star Wars, Star Trek: Voyager, Warehouse 13, Legends of Tomorrow, Killjoys, Dark Matter, Battlestar Galactica, Underworld, and The L Word.

Dre: I don’t know if there is enough room in this email for my list, I’m quite ridiculous: The X-Files, Xena, Doctor Who, Farscape, Carmilla, Lost Girl, Wynonna Earp, Supergirl, Orphan Black, Star Wars, Star Trek: Voyager, Warehouse 13, Haven, Arrow, Penny Dreadful, 12 Monkeys, Killjoys, Dark Matter, Stargate, Battlestar Galactica, Fringe, Bionic Woman, Haven, Hannibal, The Fall, (literally ANYTHING with Gillian Anderson in it), WONDER WOMAN, omg.. it’s going to be EPIC!!! Oooo have you seen the trailer for Atomic Blonde??? GET ON IT!!

FGS: Anything else you wish we had asked you?

Coral: I make and sell Xeanies and Gabeanies (slouch beanies) at the Xenite retreat. They are grey with purple lettering that reads either Xeanie or Gabeanie. I have plans to make beanies for Wynonna Earp as well, (Wynonna, WayHaught, Dolls, and Doc).

Dre: I’m not just a geek, but a big sports fan too. Oilers and Eskimos are my local boys, Bayern Munchen, and German National team are my go-tos for football. Playoff hockey is happening right now and I couldn’t be more happy that my boys are in it.

FGS: Thank you so much for sharing your time for this blog post and your creative chops for the Purgatory Softball Team shirt!

Coral, Carol and Dre gifted Katherine Barrell and Dominique Provost-Chalkley with shirts of their own at ClexaCon, and they gave us permission to share the videos with you here! Special thanks to Deb from AfterEarp for recording these videos and uploading them to YouTube!

Creative credit for the Purgatory Sheriff’s Department Softball Team: Coral, @coral2gem and Carol, @carolsno

Artwork credit: Dre, @drebombay