These two vertical lines are the same length, but their different termination shapes would have you believe otherwise. (Incredible Optical Illusions)

These two vertical lines are the same length, but their different termination shapes would have you believe otherwise. (Incredible Optical Illusions)

In my teens I used to draw all the time, and I was fascinated by optical illusions. Escher and Salvador Dali's works were my favorite to study, and I still have a large Escher-inspired poster in my house, a birthday gift from my parents when I was 15. My parents also gave me the book you see above, which explained the science behind the visual effects.

Would you believe that the two center circles are identical in size? (Incredible Optical Illusions)

Would you believe that the two center circles are identical in size? (Incredible Optical Illusions)

What does any of this have to do with designing a clothing line? Pretty much everything. When it comes to clothing, our bodies are a canvas. The lines, shapes, colors, and patterns that clothing paints on them can yield some powerful results. Once you have tipped your hat to function, fashion is basically the visual impact that an outfit has on the observer (who can also be the wearer themselves). And that impact often depends a great deal on a multitude of optical effects coded into the construction of the clothing - no matter what the person's gender or gender expression.

We all make use of these effects when we choose an outfit or when we go shopping for clothes. "This shirt/dress/pair of pants/etc. makes me look fat/skinny/like a girl/like a guy/like a kid/HOT/NOPE/what-have-you." Sound familiar? As trans people, we make use of clothing to help us express our femininity, masculinity, or combination or absence of the two. Where the difficulty comes in for us is finding readily-available clothing that not only functions (fits our size range and our proportions), but also flatters us by incorporating the visual effects that clothing has the potential to offer. If this frustrates you, stay tuned: Leo Roux Clothing will soon be showcasing a line of trans-friendly clothing that will change all of that.

Horizontal stripes on a building can make it appear taller, while on people they usually emphasize breadth. (Incredible Optical Illusions)

Horizontal stripes on a building can make it appear taller, while on people they usually emphasize breadth. (Incredible Optical Illusions)