Femme FATale

How to Make your own Titty Tassels!
August 23, 2008, 10:55 pm
Filed under: awesomeness, chicago, femme conference, femmes, fun, yay

The Femme Conference last weekend was wonderful for a lot of reasons including some community building, heart healing, and general consciousness raising. But this is not to overlook the *amazing* two nights of performances (which included many a hot burlesque queen), but also the pastie making skillshare taught by the stunning and oh-so-talented, Vagina Jenkins. With her permission to re-post, I’m going to provide you with the directions from the informational booklet she put together for us, peppered throughout with some of my own observations and tips. I’m short a reliable digital camera these days, so pardon the lackluster images captured with my camera phone.


– Plastic cup, scissors
– Thin cardboard (think bookmark width) or, if you’re wanting to make fancy/professional pasties, buckram
– Paint, markers, glitter, fabric, rhinestones, sequins, flowers, beads, feathers, tassels
– Tacky glue, Aleene’s “OK to Wash It” glue, E6000 glue, or hot glue
– Eyelash glue, 2-sided carpet tape, or spirit gum/prosthetic glue


Step 1: Using the plastic cup, trace the top or bottom of the cup onto the thin cardboard. Depending on the size of your areolae, you can make the decision what side of the cup (or any other traceable object) you’ll want to use. If the cardboard has a glossy side, this is the side you’ll want to put towards your nipple.

Step 2: Cut out the circle of cardboard.
Pasties can also be made in other shapes, such as hearts and stars, too!


Step 3: Once the base of your pastie is cut out, fold the circle in half
and then half again as shown above on the right.


Step 4: Unfold the circle and cut along one of the lines from the edge of the circle towards the center, stopping about a centimeter from the center point. Your pastie base should look as the one above.


Step 5: Overlap the left side of the cut over onto the right side, forming a solid conical shape.
With a toothpick, apply glue to the underside of the overlapping flap in order to secure the edges. Hold in place for several seconds and then allow to dry while you decide with what you will cover the pastie bases!


Step 6: I chose red flowers, black feathers, and black strung sequins for my pasties, but really the possibilities are endless! You can use curtain tassels for the centers or rhinestones. We even saw someone in the workshop make use of some amazing old-fashioned black and gold dangly earrings for the center. Be careful though – tassels and jewelery chains, when twirling, can get stuck in sequined trim and feathers. Also, too heavy a center, like the earrings I mentioned above, will look gorgeous, but won’t twirl properly because of their weight, so choose your supplies wisely depending on the look you want to achieve.


Step 7: Spend some time arranging how you want your pasties to look and then get to gluing.
When you’re done, give yourself a pat on the back and strip down for your big ta-da!!!

More Pastie Resources:

Jo “Boobs” Weldon’s Burlesque E-book
Amber Ray’s Fancy Pasties
How to Twirl Titty Tassels

I cross-posted this over at The Femme’s Guide to Absolutely Everything blog, but thought those of you who are not yet reading the fabulousness over there, might read it in these parts. That being said, make yourself some titty tassels and then go read the Femme’s Guide! We’re just getting started over there and are still recruiting contributors to broaden the femme representation, but take a peek in the meantime and leave us your love and suggestions!


body deliberate.
August 19, 2008, 1:28 pm
Filed under: butches, chicago, crush, dynamic, femme, femme conference, lust, swooning | Tags: , , , , , , ,

“are you two going to kiss?” the man who stumbled before us asked. he was drunk and wobbling on his two long legs in a way that suggested too much alcohol had mixed with a heart too weighted to keep balanced, to keep the body stable.

but i barely noticed.

because when you started to walk across the sidewalk to me, before he showed up swaying and destroying lazy-to-arrive-but-so-glad-you-finally-fucking-got-here moments like this, my vision tunneled to you. a body deliberate. calculated, intent on reaching, on doing, you sidled up to me mumbling some words about how it had been some twenty minutes since we’d talked and hadn’t that been too long? i searched for a response from a brain too tired of producing witty banter for you all day. see, those past 24 hours, saw me in a contest with myself, racing to see how fast i could make those crevices in the skin around your mouth deepen and turn darker as your smile stretched further every time. found me delivering package after package to you of smartly wrapped snark and flirt all wound tightly and made ornate with knotted heart strings for bows.

so i just smiled. and for once in the whole day, despite the frenetic swirl of drunk, happy queers tapdancing on cigarette butts outside the barroom door, allowed a bit of quiet between us. maybe my body sensed what was about to happen, knew that if it didn’t curb the firing of my brain’s synapses, i’d make some joke and we’d erupt again in a series of guffaws that of course felt good, but that didn’t end with the mingling of each other’s sweat on our upper lips.

when your hand found the bend in my waist that gives way to my hips that roll strong but pliant when you pull them just right, i knew silence had been the right choice. knew it twice as hard when, in seconds, there i was three inches from your face staring into eyes that wouldn’t release my own unless to quickly survey the state of my mouth which was, on this night, stained scarlet and heavy with the anticipation of you.

did you feel the drop when we fell into the vacuum of each other? when things around us slowed almost to the point of nonexistent as we considered the idea of halving and then obliterating all together the slowly shrinking space between us?

i remember i was thinking about your glasses and about the angle at which i’d bend my neck to avoid any sort of minor calamity of frames smashed into browbones or lenses fogged to the point of visual impairity when his voice, loud and sluggish with booze, slammed our feet back down on the concrete. i swear now that there were tiny spider-like cracks around our shoes from the impact of so brutally being forced to once again find the ground.

“are you two going to kiss?” he slurred with whiskey breath.

but we barely noticed. we didn’t even speak. not even to each other.

femme conference & moving?
August 13, 2008, 9:54 pm
Filed under: chicago, femme, femme conference, femmes, wordpress | Tags: , , , , ,

well, thursday it’s off to the femme conference in chicago! this week has been so busy preparing – there are *twelve* of us from the femme mafia twin cities roadtripping together, not to mention another member meeting us in chicago, as well as a handsome out-of-state friend i met at an academic conference a few months ago. full reports when i get back! i’ll have access to a comp, but i’m guessing not much time to do on-site blogging. we’ll see!

also, i’m thinking of making the move of femme FATale over to wordpress. while blogger suits me relatively fine, i like the option of being able to keep posts private and only accessible via password. i thought this was some fancy html magic you were all using, but it turns out that it’s just another awesome wordpress feature! my readership has been increasing more and more and with it comes the possibility of people stumbling on here that needn’t read certain things, things i want to keep to a select audience, etcetera, thus the switch. i’ll have more info about the move as it happens, but i’m guessing over the next few weeks?

for now though, off to chi-town!


Radical Queer Femmes Gather at the Femme2008 Conference
July 31, 2008, 11:41 am
Filed under: bestie, chicago, femme, femme conference, femmes, yay | Tags: , , , , ,

Here’s a guest post from my fellow Femme Mafia Twin Cities member (and bff!) spreading the word about the femme conference! We can use all the publicity around this that we can get, so if you’re able to do so, please re-post this guest entry on your own blog and leave a comment here so that we can thank you from the bottom of our hearts. xoxo – hussy red

Femme2008 Conference: The Architecture of Femme!
Who: Femme Collective, along with speakers Dorothy Allison, Leah Lakshmi Piepzna-Samarasinha and Julia Serano
When: August 15-17, 2008
Where: Chicago Wyndham O’Hare
How: Register online! Registration is still open, and is $95. You can get all the conference details at www.femmecollective.org.

Guest post by Charlotte Albrecht, Femme Mafia Twin Cities

For months now, I have been looking forward to attending Femme2008: The Architecture of Femme this August in Chicago. It has been just a few years since I started to claim a femme identity and only in the last year that I began to find community and connect with other femme-identified and femme-supportive people. As a mixed race light-skinned femme who grew up steeped in middle class white American culture, my models for femininity were clear and, like many other girls, I learned to examine all the ways that I deviated from this norm. When I started to acknowledge my desire for female-bodied people to myself and to those around me, I found myself wanting to be visible to those I desired. This desire coupled with my longstanding understanding of myself as “not feminine enough” added up to a gender presentation that was not true to myself. It wasn’t until a few years later when I met femmes of my age who encouraged me to embrace whatever feminine parts of me there were, that I ceased apologizing for dressing up and accessorizing, and, more importantly, started to think critically about the relationship between my own femininity and my sexual desire.

I see the Femme Conference as a unique opportunity to push myself further to think about the numerous forms ‘femme’ can take – shaped endlessly by each of our cultural and social locations, sexual desires, gendered selves, and outward appearances – and how I can support other people in their own journeys. I am particularly looking forward to meeting others from across the country who are organizing for femme visibility in their communities and actively connecting this work to radical liberatory politics.

You might be asking, but what is femme? Femme can mean many things, and if you ask a hundred femmes what it means to be a femme, chances are, you’ll hear a hundred different responses. Since femme is a complex, varied identity, it is frequently misunderstood. However, we can say that femme is based in a queer subculture of radical femininity. It can be both a sexual and gender identity. Femme is a queered, transgressive, stand-alone version of femininity that can be constructed independent of and/or intimately connected to biological sex.

Femmes have been both underrepresented and misunderstood within and outside of queer communities. The Femme Conference is an important and exciting time for femmes and allies of all walks of life to increase visibility and create radical queer femme community. It will be full of amazing performances and workshops, as well as a powerhouse keynote lineup: Dorothy Allison, Julia Serano, Leah Lakshmi Piepzna-Samarasinha, and Veronica Combs a.k.a. Vixen Noir.

So join me, and let’s create some radically affirming community together. It’ll be fierce

–Charlotte Albrecht, Femme Mafia Twin Cities

femme conference!
Femme Conference!

click the image above for some info. on the national femme conference, which is being held in chi-town this august! i’m definitely going to be there with the femme mafia twin cities and cannot wait to see the amazing keynotes that are lined up, as well as the variety of workshops and performances. also, the femme conference is all-inclusive, so all the hot non-femme queers out there are welcome too…especially all of you single butch/genderqueer/trans boy types! spread the word and let me know if you’re going! xo.