LGBT Fashion and the Fierce Designers Who Make it Fabulous

4 min read

From Gianni Versace to Michael Kors to Yves Saint Laurent, some of the most famous designers in the world are members of the LGBT community. In fact, LGBT fashion is one of the most commonly recognized and most highly valued cultural contributions enjoyed by Americans from all walks of life!

And why not? When your confidence shoots up 37 points simply by walking to the mailbox in a paid of stunning Michael Kors boots, it's impossible to deny that LGBT fashion is profound.

Fashion is all about personality – and LGBT designers have oodles! Designing a fabulous look is about creating a mood and ambiance that let's us all appreciate the human form.

Here are some of the most impactful LGBT designers of our modern, fiercely fabulous age.

Equality Vodka LGBT fashion designers

Efva Attling

Let's face it, gals... In the world of fashion, the gay men far out number the lesbian ladies. But that's not to say there aren't some incredibly inspiring female LGBT designers.

In fact, one of our favorites is Efva Attling, a Swedish jewelry designer and silversmith. Efva has been all over the fashion world, first as a young model, then as a disco dancer who strutted her sparkly, shiny stuff to the beat.

In 1996, Efva entered into a civil union with Swedish pop singer, Eva Dahlgren, while the gorgeous couple waited for same-sex marriage to be legalized in Sweden. In 2009, the gender neutral marriage law was passed and Efva and Eva were official.

Today, Efva's jewelry adds something sparkly to LGBT fashion. Her designs grace the necks of stars like Madonna and Meryl Streep, as well as the windows of Levi's and H&M.

Marc Jacobs

Marc Jacobs... Where do we even start. This marvelous man has been named on of Time magazine's most influential people and was also named #14 on the list of the 50 most powerful gay individuals in America in Out magazine.

In addition to creating his own line, Marc by Marc Jacobs, he was also the visionary behind Louis Vuitton for seven years. Marc's fashion career started early at the age of 15 – and he was a promising LGBT fashion contributor from day one!

Marc began his life in fashion designing hand-knit sweaters. As he grew up, he honed his unique style while building a name for himself that would be known around the world.

Putting his fame to good use, Marc launched a line of shirts in 2009 that demanded gay marriage be legal. With support from other stars such as Kate Moss, Miley Cyrus, and Jessica Lange, Marc has shown the world that LGBT designers can move mountains.

Equality Vodka LGBT fashion designers

Elspeth Champcommunal

In order to make social progress, we need pioneers who are brave as all get out – that's Elspeth.

Elspeth Champcommunal was a fashion designer and the first editor of British Vogue. Her designs had a smashing impact on European fashion, spreading throughout Paris and other European fashion hot spots.

Beyond her heavy handed influence in the world of fashion, Elspeth was a trailblazer of social attitudes toward feminism and sexuality. She was leaps and bounds ahead of the curve in terms of her forward-thinking views.

While it's not completely clear whether Elspeth was lesbian, bisexual, or straight, she was absolutely an ally and a friend in the LGBT community. In fact, she opened the door for Dorothy Todd, an openly-lesbian fashion expert, to become the next editor of British Vogue.

Sadly, Elspeth passed away in 1976 at the proud age of 88. Her influence in both the design and culture of the fashion world will not be soon forgotten.

Jack Mackenroth

Don't get it twisted – despite his rugged, chiseled appearance, he's not a gladiator. In fact, Jack Mackenroth (not to be confused with the rapper Macklemore, who's another LGBT ally we adore) is an American swimmer-turned-model and LGBT fashion designer. He was a hit on the show Project Runway and has admirably channeled his fame toward helping advance HIV and AIDS awareness.

During his time on Project Runway, Jack was candid about his HIV-positive status. Unfortunately, despite his clear talent (he won a challenge in which his three-piece men's suit was worn on The Today Show by Tiki Barber), Jack was forced to withdraw from the competition due to a contagious staph infection and subsequent hospital stay.

By partnering with global brands, he has participated in several activism campaigns to promote positivity, awareness, and healthy sexual practices.

Margaret Cho

Forget the "triple threat"! Ms. Cho is a quintuple threat (yes, it's a word. Look it up.). Margaret Cho is an American actress, author, comedian, musician, and fashion designer. Go ahead and re-read that. Ya.

On top of it all, Margaret is also a brave and outspoken advocate for racial and sexual equality. She frequently pokes fun at serious political and cultural issues in a way that gets people chatting about real fixes. Her support of LGBT rights has earned her the recognition of millions, as well as several humanitarian awards.

Margaret's clothing line, High Class Cho, was a partner project with designer Ava Stander. She was inspired to create her own line due to the challenge of finding clothing that fit her curvy body and bold personality. Her looks are some of the most striking in the LGBT fashion world.

Alright, let's dish. Who's your favorite fabulous LGBT designer? We have to know. Tell us in the comments below!