From November 9 through November 12, 303 Magazine put on a string of three fashion shows, in the seasonal social offering that is Denver Fashion Weekend. While the fashion on the runway was nothing short of amazing, there was great style off the runway as well. One standout ensemble came courtesy of local performer, model and creative Stephen Garcia, who loves pink and made it work during night one of the fashion shows. We spoke with him to learn what inspires him and how he concocted this eye-grabbing look.
Westword: Who or what inspires your style?
Stephen: I draw my style from many places. My Mexican/Samoan culture, my queerness, the call to challenge my own masculinity and limits, people I respect and more. The need to put those things at the front of my identity in plain sight really pushes me to dress the way I do. Especially in today’s violent, racist and homophobic climate. I guess it’s a small form of resistance. Also my boyfriend. He has the best eye for fashion, and styles my outfits all the time. He really pushes me to be the best me in fashion and in life.
What is your profession?
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I have a corporate job. Not what I want to be doing forever, but it works for now.
Are you from Colorado?
I was born and raised right here in Denver. It’s being hit with a lot of gentrification, but it’s still home.
What is your favorite color?
I think my favorite color is pink. It just looks good against brown skin I think.
What is your favorite accessory?
I have a few. I love wearing earrings that hang and chunky jewelry, but there are too many to choose from, really. The possibilities are endless.
What is your style mantra, or something you say to yourself while getting dressed?
Honestly, when I wear something different or challenging, I become overwhelmed with nerves, so I have to remind myself how important it is to just be me. Also a sprinkle of “bish, you godly” and “damn, I’m cute as hell” help a bit, too.
Where do you shop for fashion?
Anywhere. If it’s cute and I like it I’ll get it. My boyfriend just bought me an Oscar Utierre piece online. There are gems everywhere.
What is your favorite film?
I have so many favorites. I am a huge Star Wars fan. So I would say the Star Wars films, not including the prequels, or Kill Bill or Alien or Pan's Labyrinth.
What is your jam of the moment, or favorite song right now?
My favorite song at the moment is tied between "Told You So," by Miguel, "Ridin’ Round," by Kali Uchis, and "Lemon," by N.E.R.D. featuring Rhianna. All of them make me feel like a badass.
What three words best describe your style?
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Gay, brown and mine.
What did you think of the event and the fashion on the runway?
I love being able to come to a place with people who share the same love for something. It was great. Wambui Mckesson, a local model, did an amazing job!
Always show your true colors, Denver.