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Riley Parra

The T-shirt news in this blog post is that we have a new design for the web series Riley Parra! Here’s a quick link to the designs. But first, some thoughts about LGBTQ+ representation, and shout-outs to some awesome people.

Hello from your Fangirl Shirts founders, Rebecca and Sally! We both grew up in a time where there was no queer representation on network television. Then once queer characters started to appear on network and cable TV, it took a long time for that representation to become even partially positive and affirming. What was a queer lady to do back then? If you were Christin Baker, you didn’t wait around for TV to catch up – you made the content you wanted to see, and started streaming that content online for everyone else who wanted to see it.

Christin Baker, Founder and CEO of tello Films

Christin Baker is the founder and CEO of tello Films. She started tello in 2007 “out of passion to provide modern and relevant lesbian-focused stories for the under-served lesbian community.” From the get-go, tello has stood by their pledge to never have programming that ends with the death of a lesbian character. We were incredibly excited to share the stage with Christin at ClexaCon 2017 at the Queer Lady Business panel. Christin is nice, enthusiastic, wicked smart and a hoot, so if you get a chance to meet her, don’t pass it by!

Geonn Cannon is the author of the Riley Parra book series, as well as many other stories and novels. We haven’t met Geonn in person yet, but we are looking forward to it when it happens! Riley Parra the web series is based on Geonn’s books. He has been incredibly nice and generous to us, and we sincerely appreciate it – plus, he’s fun to talk to – follow him on twitter! Then check out Geonn’s website and buy his books!

Here’s a spoiler-free summary of Riley Parra from imdb:  “Riley Parra is a good cop in a corrupt department who discovers a war between angels and demons is being waged in her city. Both sides have chosen mortal champions, and Riley is the only chance the Good side has of winning.” The first season was released on tello in 2017, and filming for Season 2 starts today, January 19, 2018! 

In addition to a suspenseful storyline and plot twists we never saw coming, Riley Parra has awesome queer representation. Riley Parra herself is played by Marem Hassler, and the medical examiner Gillian Hunt (who also happens to be Riley’s love interest), is played by Liz Vassey. And as Star Trek fangirls, we’re psyched that Season 2 will see the addition of Marina Sirtis.

We’re grateful that there is a platform like tello that provides positive, quality lesbian content. We are tello subscribers, and we encourage you to become one too if you’re not already! Then go watch Riley Parra and all the other awesome series on tello. Support the content you wish to see in the world.

We’re so excited to be able to tell you that we’ve partnered with tello and Geonn to bring you a Riley Parra shirtCheck out the different styles on our website, and if you’re in the EU, it’s available in our EU Store.

We asked Geonn and Christin to share a few thoughts with us about Riley Parra, the importance of visibility, and being a fan. And they said yes! Here’s what they had to say.

Geonn Cannon

Riley Parra was born before Rizzoli & Isles premiered, but it definitely ended up being an answer to that show’s problem with queerbaiting its audience (fun fact: the “Detective Falls for Medical Examiner” was actually inspired by the friendship between Kate Beckett and Lainie Parrish on ‘Castle’, which eventually included a guest appearance by our pal Liz Vassey). I was writing the stories at a time when it was almost unheard of for a show to actually steer into a lesbian relationship for its lead characters. I watched Once Upon a Time a lot longer than I care to admit hoping against hope they might actually do what the fans wanted. But no. It wasn’t to be.

That’s the most important thing you should know about Riley Parra. It’s written by someone who was/is a fan like you. I recorded Stargate SG-1 onto VHS, and then I copied that tape onto a second tape so I could cut out the commercials. Now I own every episode on DVD (I have two full sets) and I own a digital version of every episode. I know what it’s like to be on the other side of a TV show, and I know the responsibilty I have to the fans. Without you, there is no show (especially true with Riley Parra, which owes its continued life to crowdfunding!) and I don’t take that lightly. I’ve been hurt by shows in the past (I still can’t watch the Stargate episode where Janet dies… too painful) and I’ll do everything in my power to make sure Riley Parra keeps your trust!

It’s Geonn in his Riley Parra shirt!

Christin Baker

When I was in college I was obsessed with Xena: Warrior Princess. I wasn’t really sure why I was so obsessed with that show. I got the full first season on VHS, which was all I could afford at the time. I was a loyal fan and would not miss a show – I mean it’s because there are strong female characters who have awesome fight scenes right? And I don’t know why the storyline where Xena goes to China and meets Lao Ma was my absolute favorite and don’t forget about the scene where she’s hiding in the spa/bath thing and needs help breathing underwater…

…Anyway, I’m a lesbian and didn’t realize until later why Xena spoke to a place in my soul that no other TV show did before. It was clear to me that Xena and Gabrielle were soul mates. And it was a show I could watch that wasn’t considered a “lesbian” show and so it was safe for me to enjoy and not feel weird or scared until I was ready to come out.

I’m so glad that now there are series that can have a lesbian couple or lesbian character and not have to be subtle about it. I’m also glad that we have stopped killing these lesbian characters. I make series for our community because I love them and there aren’t enough of them. I make them because I want people to feel represented and see their lives in the media. I’m so glad that Fangirl Shirts exists because they allow us to proudly wear out fandom on our bodies and support them as other fandoms have been able to do for much longer. I met these lovely ladies at ClexaCon last year when I did the Queer Lady Business panel and have a huge Queer Lady Business crush on them and I’m looking forward to doing another Queer Lady Business panel in 2018!

(Us too, Christin!)

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Queer Lady Business

Happy New Year! Goodbye, 2017, but more importantly, hello, 2018!

The New Year is a time when many people make resolutions for what they’re going to do differently or better. Sometimes people also set goals for themselves.

We think you’re perfect exactly as you are.

But, if you want to make any resolutions for 2018, we invite you to join us in this one:

In 2018, we resolve to support queer lady business.

What’s that, you ask? We mean businesses that are owned and run by queer women, who look to fill a needed niche for queer women, and who work to lift up and empower queer women with their product or service.

We started Fangirl Shirts because too often, we couldn’t find geeky T-shirts that were designed specifically with women in mind. We also had trouble finding a variety of products that celebrated female characters, queer characters, and queer relationships. And if we did find those things in the mass market, we weren’t always sure if our money was going to a company that shared our values.

So we started our own company. Now we make the shirts we want to wear.

Similar stories have played out in other industries – media, entertainment, publishing, apparel, fan conventions and more. If queer ladies wanted something but couldn’t find it, then they made their own thing. We want to support that, because their thing is also our thing.

What does support mean?

  • Financial support – buying products, paying for subscriptions, attending events
  • Amplifying voices – following these brands on social media, liking and sharing their content
  • Spreading the word – if you like something you get from these businesses, tell your friends about it

At ClexaCon 2017, we led a panel called Queer Lady Business, where we and other queer business owners talked about what it’s like to run businesses that have queer women as their customers, that seek to serve the LGBTQ+ community, and that give back. We were joined by:

You can listen to the recording of the panel here.

We’re happy to tell you that Queer Lady Business will be back at ClexaCon 2018 in Las Vegas. So far the panel includes us, Ebone Bell from Tagg Magazine, and Christin from tello films, with Andi returning as our moderator. We had an amazing experience discussing this topic with the women on last year’s panel as well as the attendees, and we’re so excited to do it again this year with both new and familiar faces. We hope we’ll see you there!

They say “if you build it, they will come.” Along those same lines, with businesses, if you support them, they will thrive. The only way to keep queer lady businesses in business is to support them, buy their products, and tell your friends about them. Find companies that are making products or offering events and services that you want, spreading messages you believe in, and being a force for good in the world. Then do whatever you can to show everyone that you love what they’re doing and want them to continue – including spending money on them.

Here’s a short, non-comprehensive list of queer lady businesses that we support. We also thought about trying to making a full list of queer lady businesses, but we quickly realized that other places have already done that, so we’re going to link to them instead.

  • Autostraddle – Fangirl Shirts is an A+ member
  • Black Girl Nerds – we are a Patreon for Black Girl Nerds
  • ClexaCon – we’re a sponsor of ClexaCon in 2018
  • Tagg Magazine – we are subscribers, and are excited that Ebone Bell, founder and Editor In Chief of Tagg Magazine, will be joining us for Queer Lady Business at ClexaCon 2018!
  • tello Films – we subscribe to premium content from tello Films, and are excited that Christin Baker is returning to Queer Lady Business at ClexaCon 2018!

Links to lists of Queer Lady Businesses

We know these lists don’t include everything. Please let us know if there’s a queer lady business list we should add by leaving a comment. Thanks for reading!

Take care of yourselves and each other.
Here’s to a happy, healthy, and queer 2018!

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In Emily We Trust. Please Fandras Responsibly.

2017 has been a challenging year in many ways.
But there were also good things about 2017 – including Wynonna Earp and the Earper fandom.
We’re happy to be able to close out 2017 with something really awesome.

From the creative mind and hands of Megan Smith, @Nuutmeg on Twitter, came an awesome T-shirt design that she wore at DragonCon 2017. We admired that shirt. We coveted that shirt. Today, we’re psyched to tell you that we are partnering with Megan to bring you that shirt. (EU folks, it’s available in the EU Store!)

Introducing:  In Emily We Trust

Here’s a bit about Megan in her own words and why she was inspired to design “In Emily We Trust.”

Who is Megan? I’m basically just a creative nerd who really is not all that great at putting my feelings into words but is definitely better at putting my love and passion for things into forms of art. Sometimes it’s cross-stitching. Sometimes it’s a random t shirt that gets me stopped at Dragon Con every 5 minutes asking “WHERE DID YOU GET THAT?!” Most importantly I’m an Earper. An Earper who truly admires one Emily Andras.

(Megan also has an Etsy shop called “Make Your Piece” where she sells Earp-themed cross-stitch. New products almost instantly sell out every time she posts something new, so bookmark her shop and follow her on Twitter!)

What Inspired In Emily We Trust? While being sort of new to the fandom when Season 2 of Wynonna Earp started, I like many others, saw a whole lot of love for the people on the show but I also noticed one thing that I’ve never really seen in another show that I’ve been so invested in. There is such immense love for the people who make the show. One super important woman in particular, Emily Andras.

Season two went on and I slowly started to see a little bit of doubt floating around with some story lines and as we all know, there are a lot of opinions thrown around on the internet (I’m looking at you, twitter). I felt very confused because in my heart I felt nothing but excitement to see where everything was going. I had only trust in her (and the writers) that we were not going to be let down. What makes her so good is you can be behind her 100% and she will still find a way to make your entire body shake with nerves when one of the most beloved characters spends an entire episode in a hospital bed possibly minutes away from death. Emily just…cares. I think anyone can see that in the writing of this show. She has nothing but good intentions to give us the best television and positive LGBT representation she can. WE believe in her and WE trust her.

All of this was what inspired this design. It was inspired by the love and support of all the fellow Fandras-ers (sorry Emily but oh boy is it most definitely a thing™) who have her back. I wanted to make sure that she knew that and I wanted to contribute something positive for the gift she has given us. The idea popped into my head, I made a design, kept it pretty simple, and don’t even let her tell you she doesn’t like it because she definitely took a photo of it when she saw it at Dragon Con!

We couldn’t have said it better ourselves, so we won’t try. But we will add a couple of thoughts.

Gather round, everyone, while the Ol’ Granny Fangirls tell you about The History of Fandras. We’re into portmanteaus, probably because of all the ship names we’ve learned over the years while watching awesome TV. Waaaaaaaaaaay back in the annals of history – about two years ago give or take – we mashed up the phrase “Fan of Emily Andras” into “Fandras.” It just feels good to say, doesn’t it? Fandras Fandras Fandras.

Anyway, Hashtag Fandras gained some traction after it got mentioned on the Whiskey & Doughnuts Video Hangout with Bonnie and Kevin during Season One. Layn’eh made an awesome graphic for it and partnered with us to make it available to anyone who wanted to Fandras up their life.

Everyone in the whole entire world loves Fandras – except for Emily Andras. She has said things like “Never trust a writer,” and “Save your love for the pretty people, the actors,” and myriad other antifandras statements. She insists that it’s not a thing (it’s totally a thing). She uses a Sharpie to deface any Fandras T-shirt she can, if anyone wanders too near her while wearing one.

(In case our humorous tone isn’t coming through clearly here, while all of these things are 100% true, there’s no malice involved, just good old-fashioned humor.)

So we wanted to talk a bit about what Fandras means to us.

Here’s what it doesn’t mean in our minds:  blind faith in a person to be the one and only producer of stories in which we find validation. It doesn’t mean complete confidence that we will never be disappointed. It doesn’t mean that we’ll love every single plot twist and narrative choice in Wynonna Earp, or in any future projects. It doesn’t mean that a storyline or a character’s development has to go the way we want it to in order for us to appreciate the writing. It doesn’t mean that we’re groupies.

Yeah yeah yeah. That’s what it’s not. But what IS it?

To us, Fandras is about appreciating the creativity, humor, strength, bravery and tenacity of a person who has created some truly amazing television. While we don’t know even a tenth about what goes into making a TV show, we feel certain that it hasn’t always been an easy task.

We believe in you, Emily.

To us, Fandras is also about always striving to do better. It’s listening, learning, and working to improve. Fandras is about acknowledging that we are all fallible humans and that none of us does anything perfectly all the time. Every person in the world has made mistakes. The Fandras way of processing a mistake is to work to understand it, and then figure out how to do better next time.

Fandras also means trust. We trust Emily. We trust that her intentions are good. If there’s something in a TV show that she’s written that we don’t understand or like right away, we will give it time to see how it plays out.

This is what Fandras means to us, Sally and Rebecca of Fangirl Shirts. Please tell us in the comments what Fandras means to you! We would love to hear from other Fandrases, all over the world. #MultiFandras

We have one more thing to announce in conjunction with Megan’s design – it’s our new “Please Fandras Responsibly” koozie! Available through our main catalog, we’re offering a special discount through January 15. If you’ve purchased an “In Emily We Trust” shirt or mug, just email us a copy of your receipt (fangirl at fangirlshirts dot com) and we’ll send you a coupon for 20% off a Please Fandras Responsibly Koozie.

 

Thanks to Emily Andras, Wynonna Earp, Earpers, Megan, and YOU for being one of the best parts of 2017.

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Themyscira Archers

So you’ve enrolled at Themyscira University – congratulations! At “Them U,” we believe that a well-rounded education consists of a healthy balance of academic rigor and extracurricular activity. Maybe you’ve decided to hitch your wagon to the Themyscira Equestrian Team – a great choice! For a horse of a different color, you can also join the Themyscira Archers.

The Archers are a team that prides themselves on being straight shooters – well, when it comes to bows and arrows, anyway. Wink wink! We encourage you aim high, both with your goals and your projectiles. Everyone is welcome. Join us today – get your team gear here!

Archers joining us from the EU can pick up their team gear in the EU store.

Go Amazons!

We’re grateful for the expertise and knowledge of our friend Patricia Gonsalves at Lykopis Archery, who helped us get the archer and bow just right. 

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Fangirl Shirts Holiday Gift Guide 2017

Happy winter holidays! At Fangirl Shirts, we’re here to help make your gift shopping a little easier for the fangirl, fanboy or fanperson in your life. This handy guide takes you through our entire catalog of shirts and other goodies that feature and honor strong female characters and authentic three-dimensional LGBTQ relationships.

T-shirts are de rigueur. We also have cozy hoodies and sweatshirts to keep your favorite fan warm as they marathon their favorite series on Netflix, and tank tops for dreaming of warmer temperatures. We ship worldwide from both our main catalog and our special edition catalog, and to the EU (thus avoiding customs charges) from our EU catalog.

Here’s a quick guide to all the things:

  1. By Fandom
  2. By Ship
  3. Stocking Stuffers and Wee Things
  4. Drinkware
  5. Stickers
  6. Everything Else

By Fandom

Whether the fandom started in the 1970’s or in 2017, we have a range of fandom-related gear that celebrates strong female characters! Do you know what TV show or movie the gift recipient in your life absolutely loves? Here’s all our gear tagged by fandom. The bulleted lists of links under each image will take you directly to the shirts and designs.

Buffy

Buffy the Vampire Slayer was a genre show that flipped the script and was groundbreaking for its time, with a high school girl as the superhero protagonist. Buffy has had a lasting effect on television and what girls and women expect to see in their entertainment.

Carmilla

Carmilla, a webseries for three seasons and then a fantastic feature-length movie, is great fun, poignant, and explores themes so profound that it took our breath away at times. We’ll also admit that we identify with how Laura Hollis is a total fangirl. Here are some thoughts about different facets of Carmilla in two of our blog posts:  Hollstein Est. 2014 and Embedded Pit Correspondent

Dark Matter

Dark Matter was an ensemble genre sci-fi show that ended too soon. While it was on the air, it explored questions about identity, redemption, and what it means to be human. We’ll miss this show, but we’ll continue to celebrate it.

Doctor Who

We’re up front with you that neither of us have previously been Whovians, but the exciting news that (finally) a woman, Jodie Whittaker, has been cast as the 13th Doctor, means we’ll be watching the new Doctor Who. Read more in this blog post:  A Woman’s Place Is In The TARDIS

Fandras

There’s a lot to say about how and why we love Emily Andras and her work, and we’ll be saying more soon. For now, check out our Fandras designs.

Firefly

Firefly was a fun show that sparked our imaginations. As with too many genre shows, it was cancelled too soon, but we appreciated it while we had it.

Firefly Fangirl

Killjoys

A rollicking fun show, ever-thickening-plot and especially the strong character relationships make Killjoys one of our favorite shows currently on the air. We are proud to wear the Feminist Killjoy design both for its message and for its identification of us as fans of the show.

Lexa/Clexa

Lexa was a compelling character who inspired us and many others. The Lexa/Clarke, “Clexa” relationship, was also inspiring for us while it played out onscreen. What it sparked in the LGBTQ and entertainment communities when the relationship ended was even more important and will help to create lasting change for representation on TV. Fangirl Shirts is proud to be a sponsor of ClexaCon 2018, one of the best results.

Lost Girl

Lost Girl will always be incredibly special to us. We, the founders of Fangirl Shirts, met because of the show, and we believe that its portrayal of Bo and Lauren’s relationship was a halcyon of great representation and a bellwether for where TV is heading. We talk about this a bit more in our blog post Doccubus Fangirl.

Orphan Black

HOLY CRAP, THIS SHOW. Orphan Black was innovative in so many ways, with compelling characters, a gripping storyline and thought-provoking science that has firm roots in reality. We’re in awe of Tatiana Maslany and her activism, and so glad she won an Emmy.

Peace Maker

We grieve for the victims every time there is a mass shooting, we believe that change is possible, and we envision a world free of gun violence. 100% of the proceeds from our Peace Maker shirts are donated to Everytown for Gun Safety.

South of Nowhere

South of Nowhere featured two girls falling happily in love before it was cool, and we discuss that in this blog post Spashley Fangirl

Star Wars

A long time ago in a galaxy far, far away, a movie zoomed into our collective consciousness in the 1970’s, and it featured a strong woman who saved herself. This franchise has endured and female characters have grown more prominent and strong with each new film. We’re proud to be fans of the classic and the current Star Wars.

Supergirl

Not only were we excited to watch a superhero show with a female superhero at its core, we were also pleasantly surprised that the storyline grew in the second season to include a real same-sex relationship that rang true in many ways and a coming out arc for Alex Danvers that resonated. We’re continuing to watch Supergirl.

Wonder Woman

We knew we’d love Wonder Woman when we heard this movie was coming, but we were seriously blown away by how amazing the movie was – along with a gazillion other people, as Wonder Woman topped out as the highest-grossing superhero origin movie of all time. Our initial blog post about Wonder Woman tells you more, and we continue to live with the Amazons through Themyscira University and some future designs!

Wynonna Earp

We love Wynonna Earp. We’ve written a lot of blog posts about it, so read them all:  Why We Love Wynonna Earp,  I Got My Beaver Buzzed At Shorty’s and Pussy Willows and Tacos Are Tasty and #WynonnaTravels and I Love Earp and Purgatory Softball Team and Kindness Is Contagious.

X-Files

Dana Scully jumped into our fangirl minds with her firm grasp of science, her skepticism, and her equal footing with Fox Mulder. Read how she inspired us in X-Files:  The Fangirl Is Out There. The designs for these X-Files shirts are by Kira Beaudoin, an amazing artist – check her out!

We also have shirts that, while they aren’t inspired by a television show or movie, represent things we think are awesome and that we care about.

Canada

Canada itself- the country, the people, their values, and the TV and entertainment that comes from this great country, warrant some fanshirts.

Kindness

We are big fans of civil discourse, giving people the benefit of the doubt, and realizing that behind twitter accounts, whether they’re fellow fans or celebrities, are real people with real feelings. Read more about this partnership with Jo Garfein of Cancer Gets LOSTBe The Fan You Wish To See In The World

Young Fans:  We offer some of our designs for babies, toddlers and kids also.

By Ship

We celebrate three-dimensional relationships between women. There are many great relationships these days on TV, so our list isn’t comprehensive…yet.

Stocking Stuffers and Wee Things

If you have a fan in your life, you know that going to cons is an important part of what they do. Con attendees need lanyards and flair, and we have those!

Drinkware

It’s important to hydrate when you’re fangirling. Some people like caffeine and sugar with their female heroes, and we have mugs out the wazoo to hold your coffee, tea or hot chocolate. Cupcakes not included.

Or maybe you want to have a cold one! Our line of koozies will keep your beer, pop or Beaver Buzz cool and protect your hand from condensation while telling the world you’re a Feminist Killjoy and that Tacos Are Tasty.

Stickers

Stickers are great for EVERYTHING – decorating your water bottle, your laptop, or any other surface you own. (Note:  these are paper stickers and not waterproof, so don’t put them on your car or bike.)

For the Fan Who Has Everything

They probably don’t have:

Wherever you are, whatever you celebrate, Fangirl Shirts wishes you a wonderful holiday season and a very happy New Year.