Meet Gabrielle Alexa Noel, Bi Girls Club founder & bisexual+ visibility advocate
Gabrielle Alexa Noel, digital creative and owner of Bi Girls Club (she / her / hers)
Something you need to about Gabrielle Alexa Noel: She is not just one thing. For starters, she’s a self-identified “digital creative” in every sense of the word. She’s written for Tinder and Playboy, among other publications. She’s co-authored a sexuality workbook with sex educator Cameron Glover. Her Instagram feed is a lush, colorful spread of sex and sexuality content, funny tweets, and as well as looks for days (see: metallic pieces, O-ring harnesses, and sex-worker-positive, cropped slogan tees). But more than that, Noel identifies within the LGBTQ+ community as bisexual, pansexual, and queer. “And before anyone says anything, yes, those three labels can overlap,” Noel tells Cherry Magazine.
And so it follows that Noel is also the founder and owner of Bi Girls Club, which doesn’t just stop at people attracted to two genders or a rigid definition of “girls,” Noel emphasizes. In her own words, it is “a lifestyle brand for bi, pan, queer, and fluid women/femmes.” In honor of Bisexual+ Visibility Day and Bisexual+ Visibility Month, get to know Noel, her journey with Bi Girls Club, and her work as a bisexuality+ advocate.
This interview has been edited and condensed for clarity.
CC: What experiences led you to start the Bi Girls Club brand?
GN: As a bisexual person, I'm often stuck convincing people that bi+ [folks] deal with any substantive forms of oppression. I wanted to increase bi+ visibility. I also learned that bi+ people receive less funding from LGBTQ+ organizations, so I decided to raise money for those organizations during Pride month by starting Bi Girls Club. [Currently, 10% of Bi Girls Club’s proceeds go to Bi Net USA.] People asked me to continue beyond just that month, so I've kept it going.
CC: What are your roles and responsibilities for Bi Girls Club? And do you have a team?
GN: I am the creator, mastermind, and the only person responsible for doing everything. It's a lot more work than I imagined! People keep asking me if I have interns but I can't even afford myself.
CC: How do you go from idea to concrete garment / accessory?
GN: A lot of what I seek to do is empower others so a lot of times, I'll run into a particular feeling about my own identity and I'll create items from that.
CC: What has the reception to Bi Girls Club been like?
GN: Mostly positive now! At first, I ran into a lot of criticism about the size ranges of my clothes, but I use a print-on-demand service that doesn't carry certain sizes. I can do only so much right now. I think people picture this as a way more structured operation than just me, one person, in her basement office.
I also hear criticism because this line is for bi+ (so: bisexual, pansexual, queer, fluid, and label-free are included) women/femmes specifically, but not for lesbians. Bi+ people get a lot of stigma and are perceived as straight people trying to break into queer spaces. We're intruders until we prove otherwise.
So this line was about visibility to combat that stigma, for bi+ identities who are marginalized within the LGBTQ+ community. I still offer items that can be worn by other identities though. And I understand that stigma comes from many directions.
CC: Can you talk about the decision to brand Bi Girls Club as an “apparel brand for bi, pan, and queer womyn/femmes?” Why was it important for you to be inclusive in your language?
GN: It's really difficult to be inclusive when you're also trying to create a safe space. I feel like I'm creating for past versions of myself who exist presently. So I wanted BGC to be a lifestyle brand for people who experience the marginalization I have, to hopefully empower them in being their true selves.
CC: How do you juggle pouring creative efforts into Bi Girls Club along with your other hustles, like being a writer, a photographer, and an all-around creative?
GN: Bold of you to assume I have balance. I'm actually so burnt out right now — my doctor told me to chill out. So I'm trying to slow down! When I figure out what balance is, I'll let you know.
CC: What’s your favorite thing about being bisexual?
GN: Everything. I love people so much. I love dating. I'm having a blast meeting every size, texture, gender, and personality of human. Also: blue, pink, and purple are top-tier colors.
CC: What’s your least favorite thing about being bisexual?
GN: Biphobia! It's difficult enough to explain “gay” to my family, but “bisexual” is even harder. People genuinely expect you to just pick and I have no desire to do that. And I particularly deal with biphobia coming from other LGBTQ+ folks, so it's a system you have to first convince people is real. And bisexual is an identity you constantly have to prove.
CC: What’s one thing you wish monosexuals, both gays and straight, knew about being bisexual / pansexual / sexually fluid?
GN: I wish they understood that a bi+ person being uncertain or confused isn't because bisexuality isn't real: It's because society refuses to accept that it is.
CC: What’s next for Bi Girls Club?
GN: FALL IS COMING! I can't wait to drop comfy sweat suits with all new designs. I'm gonna be super warm and comfy in my designs until spring.