Jun 4, 2024 - Business

Black-, transgender-led Brave Space Alliance designs collection for The Tie Bar

Photo of a blanket with the words "Brave Space Alliance" written on it

Pocket squares in the collection. Photo: Carrie Shepherd/Axios

The Tie Bar in Lincoln Park has teamed up with South Side LGBTQ+ center Brave Space Alliance (BSA) to create a collection of ties, pins, pocket squares and more for Pride month.

Why it matters: All proceeds from sales of the collection go to the Black-led center, which was the first to provide housing, health care and employment resources for LGBTQ+ individuals on the South and West sides.

Catch up quick: The Tie Bar started in 2008 as a place to get affordable ties, starting at about $25, but has expanded to offer shirts, full suits and tailoring.

  • "Menswear" is no longer just for men; ties are worn more casually by everyone, and tailored suits are genderless as well, president Michelle Kohanzo tells Axios.
Photos of a man wearing a nice watch with cuff links
Jae Rice models some of the items from the collection. Photos: Courtesy of The Tie Bar

State of play: The collection was designed by BSA's Jae Rice, and The Tie Bar will provide free tailoring for BSA clients and donate items to the organization's Dignity Suite, which offers gender affirming clothes for free.

Zoom in: Items for sale include a pocket square in pinks and blues with the skyline and BSA's mission statement, a tie with rainbow stars, and socks that read "A braver Chicago."

What they're saying: "Some of the enamel pins, you'll see just the word brave on there. We want folks to be an easy identifier for brave and safe spaces," Rice says.

  • "Whether you're an ally, whether you're part of the LGBTQIA community, when you wear one of the pieces from this collection, we want folks to know that, 'Hey, that's the person we can feel safe with.'"

If you go: You can buy the collection at the store on Armitage Avenue or online.


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