Jordan Ellis of Jordandené on creating the Fangirl Galaxy Collection with author Sam Maggs
By Lisa Granshaw
Geek fashion brand Jordandené is known for their unique shirt and accessory designs featuring quotes from a range of fandoms. Those designs recently went to the next level for geek girls in a new collaboration with Sam Maggs, associate writer at BioWare and author of the books The Fangirl’s Guide to the Galaxy and Wonder Women.
The Fangirl Galaxy collection launched online Wednesday and will be available at Jordandené’s BookCon booth this weekend. The line has T-shirts, tank tops, zipper bags, hats, stickers, and buttons with the phrases Clever Girl, Space Witch, Fake Geek Girl, Complex Female Character, and Manic Pixie Scream Girl. Jordan Ellis, founder of the Brooklyn-based company, told GeekFold that she had been a fan of Maggs for a long time. Once they finally met and started talking, Ellis asked if she wanted to work together and Maggs said yes. What Ellis thinks is cool about the designs is that they display “descriptors of geek girls of different kinds.”
“Then the colors are her brand’s colors and galaxy inspired stuff. Since it’s not directly pulled from a property like Marvel or Star Wars, it’s just sort of vibe-y. The title Fangirl Galaxy Collection feels like it ties into everything, but it isn’t a Fangirl’s Guide to the Galaxy collection or Wonder Women collection. It’s all Sam Maggs things together which is cool,” she said.
In a statement about the Fangirl Galaxy Collection, Maggs said it “comes from a place near and dear to my heart.”
“Jordandené's commitment to clothing for ‘fangirls’ of all genders and body types is inspiring, and I'm thrilled to be working with them to bring this line to life. I hope you find something here that speaks to you or to the best Complex Female Characters in your life,” she said. “Also, if anyone knows Jeff Goldblum, make sure he gets one of the Clever Girl shirts, okay? Thanks.”
BookCon takes place in New York City Saturday and Sunday, and worked out as the perfect place to launch the line since the two women would both be attending the convention. To Ellis, BookCon is different from larger conventions. It’s more accessible and personal, which makes it a special place for a release.
“I don’t know if there are many other fashion releases happening at BookCon, which I think is pretty cool. Jordandené is also hoping to do more book related and inspired products moving forward,” Ellis explained. “This seemed like a good way to have an announcement of a collection that made sense, but also sort of at the same time announce that this is a direction we might be going in the future, doing more comic and book related stuff. Those two things overlapped really well.”
While nothing is official yet, Ellis said they are speaking with authors and books as they hope to move more into that world soon.
The book fashion area is one Ellis has seen change over the years, moving more into subtle fashion which is something she enjoys in the brands she likes and enjoys including in her own work. It’s important to Ellis to feature subtle book fashion since it isn’t offered as much as lines inspired by the biggest blockbuster and other areas of media.
“We’ve always tried to listen to the fans. I think Etsy does a really good job of this, whether it’s fully legal or not, but listening to fans about the specific stuff they want even if it’s not what bigger companies or brands are paying attention to,” she said. “Even from the little bit we’ve done so far, even big books don’t really have a ton of merch. Most books have a tote bag or something like that, but we’ve done a shirt with Geekerella through Quirk Books and then we’re doing this. We want to do other authors and everyone we talk to, the idea of them doing merch for their books was a thing they would love to happen but it isn’t obviously going to happen.”
According to Ellis, the things they care about as a company and their size work well when it comes to working with authors.
“We’re not going to have a minimum of one million units of something we have to sell to make it work for us, because I don’t know if that would happen, or all of these things,” she said. “Sometimes with bigger companies you have to be able to hit huge numbers like that, so it’s kind of nice that I feel like we are the right size and the right audience and the right kind of business to move into the industry in an area like this.”
Adding more authors and books isn’t the only way Jordandené is expanding. They recently expanded into The Sartorial Geek which focuses on community. It releases a podcast and a quarterly magazine while also holding events and panels. Ellis said they want to do more community building and create more content. The second issue of the magazine will be out for BookCon and Ellis said The Sartorial Geek’s own website is coming soon. In fact, if you’ll be in New York City for BookCon, The Sartorial Geek is co-hosting an event with GeekFold to celebrate books and fashion Saturday.
If you’ll be at BookCon, you can find Jordandené at booth 1139 and Maggs at the Quirk Books booth 2038 Saturday from 11am to 12pm. If you can't make it to BookCon, you can still join in the fun by entering The GeekFold Book Fashion Giveaway!
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