Dress: The Journal of the Costume Society of America We Invite you to Submit to a Special Issue on LGBTQ+ Fashions, Styles, and Bodies


Sexuality and fashion intersect in numerous ways as our continually shifting identities are often signified through our appearance and style. The LGBTQ+ (lesbian, gay, bi-sexual, transgender, queer, etc.) community fashions their bodies in ways that sometimes overtly reflect their sexual identity or not. Yet, up until more recently, these styles, aesthetics, experiences, and representations have been left out of the fashion history narrative. This special issue is aimed at all aspects of the LGBTQ+ community as it relates to the history (including contemporary or more recent histories) of fashion, style, dress, and the body. Papers are welcome that examine related topics using historic, ethnographic, material culture, theoretical, critical, qualitative, and/or sociological methods.

Potential topics include, but are not limited to:

  • Butches, femmes, dykes, bois, studs, and other identities as they relate to style and expression
  • Dapper and handsome women
  • Gay men’s fashion
  • Intersections of race, sexuality, and gender
  • Gay window advertising
  • Drag queens and kings
  • Leather and S&M
  • Disability, queerness, and fashion
  • Signifiers in negotiations of identity
  • Bars, pride, and other queer spaces
  • Queer fashion media
  • Transgender, gender non-conforming, and genderqueer bodies and styles
  • LGBTQ+ characters in novels, television, and film
  • Activism, gay rights, and fashion
  • Gay wedding fashions
  • Binding, packing, and tucking: clothing as it relates to changing bodies and identities

Please follow these instructions when preparing your paper for submission:

All manuscripts will be double-blind peer reviewed, and should be submitted by June 7, 2018 to Kelly L. Reddy-Best, Ph.D., Assistant Professor in Apparel, Merchandising and Design, Iowa State University at klrb@iastate.edu. Please feel free to send abstracts for potential papers and questions to this email address as well.

Founded in 1975, DRESS was one of the first journals devoted to the broad field of dress studies. It represents the highest level of scholarship and addresses many areas of study including examinations of dress in art, social history, anthropology, and material culture. DRESS invites submissions of interdisciplinary work in English about dress, fashion and culture. The journal also invites work on fundamental concerns such as theory, research methods, and analytical and interpretative papers that describe and place dress in cultural or historical context​.

Why publish in DRESS?

  • DRESS is a well-established and highly respected journal
  • The journal has wide readership among the members of the Costume Society of America, and across the globe
  • Authors do NOT have to be members of the Costume Society of America to submit
  • DRESS is an interdisciplinary journal and welcomes submissions from fashion scholars, historians, museum professionals, sociologists and many other disciplines
  • The journal provides an opportunity for non-academic scholars, such as museum curators, to publish their research.  
  • Publishes full articles with broad themes, as well as shorter reports which focus on a particular artifact, archive or topic
  • DRESS is beautifully designed and highly visual. Up to 20 images are permitted per article. Authors of accepted articles may apply to cover costs of image reproduction right