Pic by Charlie Moss modeling a GFW Clothing white shirt.
She’s the owner of Refuse To Conform Clothing and a fashion icon in her own right. With 73.9k followers on Instagram, there is no questioning Charlie Moss’s eye for style.
GFW got the goss on what non-binary fashion really means to Charlie, delving into queer style and the LGBTQ community’s aim to blur the lines of gender…
Firstly, Charlie, do you think non-binary fashion exists? What does it really mean?
It definitely exists. There are so many brands now that are creating non-binary/genderless fashion. To me it means that clothing is just clothing, not 'men’s' clothes or 'women’s' clothes, just clothes. When I buy clothes, if I like the style I'll buy it whether it's in the women’s or men’s section. I feel by these brands doing what they're doing it is one step closer to non-binary acceptance and it allows people to feel more confident to dress how they want to without having to feel as if they have to fit into societies 'norms'.
Queer style is rooted in gender nonconformity and is tied to our identities, do you think eventually fashion will become completely blurred in terms of gender? Or do you think mainstream fashion will continue to be gender specific, encouraging new brands to start up and tailor to nonconforming consumers?
Fashion is evolving more and more every day in terms of how it designs not specifically to one gender, for example Gender Free World design their shirts to fit your body rather than your gender. I hope that one day fashion will be blurred in terms of gender. I think it will take a while but it's good to see mainstream brands like Zara and Selfridges releasing 'ungendered/agender' ranges. Fingers crossed this will reflect a change in social attitudes, I think the less boundaries with fashion the better.
What do you think about clothing as a form of visual activism with individuals expressing themselves in new styles?
Not necessarily, I think everyone's reason behind wearing non-conforming clothing is different. For example I know people who wear my brand aren't necessarily overtly protesting against mainstream fashion, the brand has a different meaning to each customer.
Do you think the LGBTQ community is at the forefront of revolutionizing the way in which we look at fashion in relation gender performance and gender expression?
Going from only what I've seen it seems like it's mainly LGBTQ people that are pushing for changes in the way we look at fashion, but that's only from what I've seen from LGBTQ people releasing clothing lines.
One of your main platforms to promote RTC and your own style is Instagram, how much time do you allocate to Instagram? Do you take pride in interacting with your followers? That's a lot to keep up with!
I check Instagram quite a lot throughout the day, I try and interact as much as possible by replying to messages and comments too!
How did it all get started? Were you using Instagram for personal photos and went from there? Or was it always your intention to grow such a following?
I just started posting personal photos around two years ago. I reached out to a few brands about promoting their products, started promoting and my following just grew more and more every day. Now brands contact me! At the beginning there was no intention to grow a big following, then I started to see people shouting each other out to help boost their following so I did a bit of that and I soon realised Instagram is a great platform to start my own brand. Over time it's just grown to what it is today.
Why did you start RTC and how do you describe the style of your collection?
I started RTC because at the time I was working three days in a bar in Spain and it seemed to me that the way forward for living out there was to have my own business and I wanted a new focus. I wanted to create a clothing brand that implies a strong statement and will appeal to everyone and anyone - A brand that can enable people to be their true selves. I'd describe my style of collection at the moment as bold and a lot of people say it's quite 'Tomboyish', (even though I have plenty of customers who are not in the slightest tomboys), this is something I'm looking to change to live up to the idea of it being genderless. I want to bring out different styles of clothing to fit all kinds of people.
Is there anything else you'd like to add? What can we expect from RTC in the future? Where do you see fashion going generally?
RTC is expanding all the time, new colours are coming in pretty much all of the tees! I'm always thinking up new ideas, there will be plenty more designs to come in the near future! Overall, fashion in general is changing all the time with new trends etc, I think we will definitely see more brands releasing genderless lines too.