Tomboy Style

Tis the season to embrace casual, menswear-inspired designs.

By Eden Dawn July 1, 2013 Published in the July 2013 issue of Portland Monthly

Alternative Apparel Racer Tanks ($28 each), Stripe the Right Note Chino ($158), and All Black Peekaboo Oxfords ($158) at Wildfang; Natalie Joy Half Moon Necklace, $120 at

Finders Keepers On Your Vest Behavior ($158), Blank NYC Not Your Boyfriend’s Boyfriend Jean ($88), and Dolce Vita Leather Lattice Oxfords ($168) at Wild- fang; Grayling Hawk Necklace, $89 at gray

This summer, Annie Hall hip-checks Carrie Bradshaw right off the runway. Collections by Stella McCartney, Rebecca Taylor, and Helmut Lang showcase utilitarian, tailored silhouettes that eschew girly-girl features in favor of tomboy duds—think jumpsuits, button-down shirts, and jackets. 

“There is an easy sense of unfussiness to tomboy style, no need to primp or feel constricted,” says Daisy Grattan, co-owner of NE Alberta Street’s Abrahams & Duffy boutique. In other words: ideal for summer.

Blazing the trail locally, Nike alums Emma Mcilroy and Julia Parsley debuted online retailer Wildfang (German for tomboy) in April to a storm of attention from Vice, Refinery 29, and Cool Hunting. The anti-frills e-shop features boxy tanks, loose long jackets, and stylish jeans without a trace of fluff. This month, Wildfang opens a tiny storefront in Southeast.

They’re not alone in absorbing the Y chromosome into women’s fashion: the shelves at Bridge & Burn overflow with short-sleeve polos and striped tanks (the shop bulked up in anticipation of a run on masculine styles). And Abrahams & Duffy have sold through stacks of ISM Mode’s unisex tailored pants in just days. Here’s how you, too, can play with the boys. 

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