Beyond the Rainbow: Our Favorite Pride Design Projects and Indie Brands
Celebrate LGBTQ+ pride month with flowers, home textiles, excellent coffee, and more.
The rainbow flag has been a symbol of LGBTQ+ pride since 1978, when the artist Gilbert Baker first designed it. It was loud and joyful and hard to ignore by design, and it celebrated acceptance and living out loud. Baker could never have predicted that corporate brands would adopt this symbol and slap it on everything from candy to sneakers in an attempt to identify with a growing and influential population of LGBTQ+ consumers and their allies. No offense, Skittles, but we’re going to show our pride by supporting small, local businesses that have grown in the spirit of Pride’s provenance—with creativity, color, heart, and equity in mind.
Say It with Flowers
A Pride arrangement from Portland’s sustainable and queer-owned flower shop, Coy & Co is like a deconstructed rainbow. Owner Lynsea Coy uses locally grown flowers year-round, so each Rainbowquet is unique and reflects flowers that are grown seasonally in Oregon. Order from Coy for delivery or pickup and 25% of the proceeds go to support queer rights and organizations that you can choose at check-out. If you’re outside of Portland, try your hand at making one yourself with a mix of tulips, anemones, butterfly ranunculus, forget-me-nots, lilacs, irises, garden roses, yarrow, peonies, billy balls, and bells of Ireland.
Support Queer Artists
Another Portland local, Lisa Congdon, is an artist and illustrator who’s been an outspoken supporter of queer rights throughout her career, using her eye for electric color and hand-lettering to create prints, stickers, magnets, tote bags, DIY embroidery kits, and nearly anything else you can think of with uplifting messages and punchy graphics. (Side note: Congdon designed Madewell’s Pride t-shirts this year). Order a print on archival paper and show your support year round.
Put a Stamp on It
Ladyfingers Letterpress, a queer-owned letterpress and stationery store in Colorado Springs, got its start when the owner’s own “Mrs. & Mrs.” wedding invitation went viral. Now, it’s a go-to spot for LGBTQ+ themed cards and a cute selection of subtle rainbow-themed gifts. Buy a pack of these cards by Iron Curtain Press from the Ladyfingers site and send a note of support to anyone you love that’s celebrating this month.
Food for Thought
Goldbelly has teamed up with small bakeries and restaurants across the country to offer a Pride-themed holiday collection of layer cakes, cookies, and treats to ship nationwide. Our favorite is the six pack of rainbow-hued ice cream sandwiches from MILK in Los Angeles—macaroons with a thick layer of ice cream, dipped in Fruity Pebbles or Froot Loops. Pick them up if you’re a local or send them to a friend.
Stock up on Gifts…and Coffee
Bloom & Plume floral designer, coffee shop owner and force of nature Maurice Harris has created a small empire in Los Angeles focused on celebrating BIPOC LGBTQ+ life and creativity. In addition to designing florals for some of the city’s highest profile events, he sells vibrant hand-tied bouquets in every imaginable color at his Temple Street coffee bar—and home goods like tote bags and coffee mugs, available in store or online.
Suay Shop is a sustainable, queer-owned and operated home textiles line in Los Angeles that creates pillows, napkins, and quilts from deadstock fabric like linen and corduroy and post-consumer waste. To celebrate Pride ’21, they’ll donate a portion of the proceeds from the sale of every pillow (available in a full spectrum of colors) to Seeding Sovereignty Ancestral Acres Farm and Garden, which addresses food scarcity and farm initiatives for LGBTQ+ and BIPOC communities. Their linen “quiltlets” made in array of softened linen scraps work at the foot of a bed, hung on the wall, or as a throw, and serve as a great daily reminder to show support year round—not just in June.