Durango street style: Gay pins and the Gingham Club

by Patty Templeton

There are people in this world that vibrate at a higher energy. When they smile at you, it feels like you’ve walked into a sunbeam. Elementary school art teacher Shannon Cruise is one of those people. Cruise is not only exquisitely amicable, she’s a helluva snazzy dresser. DGO chatted with Cruise at Studio &’s holiday party to ask her about her infinitely interesting fashion sense.

“I’m an art teacher so I feel like I can get away with a lot. If I’m in my bedroom and I’m thinking to myself, ‘Should I do that?’ it’s usually a yes because the kids think the more crazy looking you are, the more legitimate you appear to be as their art teacher.

Tonight, I’m trying to be warm – functionally fashionable. My mom gave me this pin. I remember seeing it when I was growing up. I was just visiting her in Florida and she’s like, ‘I can’t wear this pin anymore.’ I asked, ‘Why?’ and she was like, ‘People keep thinking I’m gay.’ (Laughs) I was like, ‘There’s nothing wrong with that!’ She was like, ‘Well, I don’t want people thinking I’m gay,’ and I was like, ‘I’ll take it!’ I live in a rainbow (colored) house. I don’t know what people think about me and I don’t care. Let’s add to the rainbow.

I remember as a little kid being made fun of by my family for changing outfits four times a day. They would say, ‘Shannon costume change again.’ My mom would get really mad and point out that clothes weren’t dirty yet, and I was like, ‘That’s fine. I still want to change my clothes.’

This outfit is from Outdoor Exchange, the thrift store, and this shirt I just bought here and put it on. Tim (Kapustka) told me that the Gingham Club was his grandparent’s polka club on the south side of Chicago, way back in the day. That’s super great. I love stuff like that.”

Interview edited and condensed for clarity.Got rad style or know someone who always looks fab? Send DGO a heads-up on who to interview next at [email protected].Patty Templeton


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