Rainbow capitalism (n.) 1. Pandering to the LGBTQ community, often with rainbow merchandise and LinkedIn avatars—and typically exclusively during Pride Month—in order to make a profit or advance a business interest. 2. Not these local businesses.
Looking for a way to directly support Seattle’s queer community (and maybe even get some rainbow cupcakes out of the deal)? We’ve compiled a list of some LGBTQ-owned businesses in town that stay gay even when July 1 rolls around.
This list is not exhaustive, and we’re happy to keep updating it throughout Pride Month and beyond. Please reach out to [email protected] with any suggestions for businesses we should feature.
A gender-affirming salon with locations around the city and stylists who get that you want a turquoise mullet, not an aqua shag.
Shelves stocked with indie magazines, a fridge stocked with indie beer—print is living in this new-this-year Capitol Hill newsstand co-owned by Queer/Bar’s Joey Burgess.
Seattle’s LGBTQ-owned cupcakery serves The Gay (a cute confetti cupcake) each year in June—because an aversion to Pride Month displays in big box stores shouldn’t preclude anyone from tasting the rainbow.
Cofounder Alyssa Kaliszewski’s passion for sourcing gender- and size-inclusive vintage clothing colors the selection at this West Seattle shop: “I'm plus-size, and also bisexual, and wanted to find a way to offer vintage clothing for folks that are like me,” Kaliszewski says. “Folks who don't necessarily follow the normal gender prescription of what people should wear.”
Seattle vegans have lost their collective mind for this new food truck, which parks outside the Ballard outpost of Cycle Dogs to sling photogenic doughnuts in flavors like french toast and rose petal. Owners Christopher Ballard and Sean Willis, also the couple behind plant-based magazine Outbound Herbivore, are equally sweet.
Seattle has no shortage of proudly queer-owned bars and restaurants (and they're just the place to celebrate Pride). Here are a few we love:
- The Flora Bakehouse, Beacon Hill
- The Lumber Yard, White Center
- Marination, various locations
- Queer/Bar, Capitol Hill
- Stoup Brewing, Ballard
- Two Doors Down, Madison Valley & Pioneer Square
- The Velvet Elk, Mount Baker
Though Indian Summer’s jewelry box of a Capitol Hill shop is temporarily closed, owner Adria Garcia stays busy posting an immaculate selection for sale on Instagram. Look here for a fat-friendly lineup of mind-bogglingly glam vintage finds.
This isn’t your typical auto shop. With a mostly queer, trans, or female staff, Repair Revolution and founder Eli Allison are combatting the boys club of auto repair. The car maintenance shop offers diagnosis, service, and repair on all makes and models, and holds workshops on car-owning basics.
Seattle’s legendary queer-owned barbershop, founded in 1993 by David Petersen and Wade Weigel, now boasts 19 locations—including one in Manhattan!—where you can get a beer with your buzz cut (in normal times, anyway).
A ceramics studio works double duty as a shop of striking-but-useful planters, mugs, and glassware from artists in Seattle and beyond.
Owner Karyn Schwartz told Capitol Hill Seattle Blog in 2013 that the AIDS crisis, and the death of a friend, sparked her interest in holistic healing. A trip to Sugarpill, with its selection of natural remedies and organic treats, feels restorative.
Founded by married couple Fran Dunaway and Naomi Gonzalez to address a lack of gender-neutral underthings, TomboyX has since morphed into a worldwide outfit with cute, comfortable cuts for every body.