Latinx Brands on the Rise
Updated: Nov 1, 2021
ECHO PARK, CA – Género Neutral is a community boutique that sells gender-neutral clothes. They collaborated with Latina Magazine for the last week of Hispanic Heritage Month. The store had a Pop-Up event in Echo Park with other Latina-owned brands like Paisa Boys, Ceremonia, and Rockii Studios.
Género Neutral Founders, Jennifer Zapata and Ashley S. P. started their clothing brand last summer during the Covid-19 pandemic. Both women were working for a company, which remains anonymous, and decided to launch their own clothing line. They had friends from diverse communities who supported their ideas to create their clothing line business.
The store opened in March 2021 in Echo Park, after their sales began to skyrocket on social media. S.P. says “It’s been a learning process all around.” Everyday felt like a new “first” for them.
Zapata says she’s a proud Colombian American. She says she’s lucky to have built a new community of friends and supporters from all backgrounds. S.P. is Hungarian, Spanish, and American. Both are appreciative for the success of their clothing line business because it pushes the boundaries of gender-neutral clothes.
Both say it’s important to showcase diverse, ethnic designer brands like they have throughout their boutique-- because it shows the importance of creating space for those diverse artists and ethnic designers. Consumers can become familiar with unseen talents.
Shopper Ezekiel Sucillo is a fan of Género Neutral and Paisa Boys. Sucillo is a frequent customer who loves to wear clothing brands that represent a gender-neutral element in style. He wanted to purchase an exclusive shirt from Roberto Sanchez, an uprising Mexican designer.
Sucillo says it’s important to show the youth you don’t have to dress a certain way. He says fashion is a fun way to express yourself.
The fashion industry is evolving, and it allows many folks to be creative with what they wear.
Sucillo says he admires a Latinx designer from Paisa Boys because the designer also works as a gardener. “I remember in a LA Times interview, he mentioned that he’s actually a gardener,” and works for his family’s gardening company alongside undocumented workers.
He’s fascinated by the idea that the Latinx community has expanded their ability to start small businesses like a clothing brand that represents a community, and still be able to manage a second job.
Alexander Pellot started working with Género Neutral on the first day Zapata and S.P. opened the doors to their store. He’s the men’s buyer and helps the ladies on day-to-day tasks.
He says, “Being that I am a Latin-Hispanic person,” the storytelling in fashion resonates with him because he can be proud of his roots while showcasing his style.
Pellot says the Latinx community is very rich in culture, and his Latinx community has many talents to offer with fashion being one of them.
He says it’s important to embrace each other and share the platform with the voices of artists who are often left behind in the industry.
Video Credit: Pero Like
Video Credit: Kimmy Chacon
By Kimmy Chacon
Contributions from Género Neutral
Photos from Género Neutral
Photos from Kimmy Chacon