Thursday, January 31, 2013

It is hard work being a woman every day

Sept_2004I continue addressing the questions and suggestions readers sent me in response to my call for topics that they would like me to write about or expand upon.

Diane Leonard of TG Captions fame wrote, "You always talk about how often you go out, that you don't like men, that you are married, but you never mention how your wife deals/handles your girl side, does she participate, etc."

You may have misinterpreted something I wrote or I did not write something clearly. In either case, I don't dislike men. Some of my best friends are men. I am not a big fan of machismo and don't like men who act macho, but in general, I get along with guys. And without guys, there would be no such thing as femulation!

My wife is a saint.

She has little interest in my "girl side" except for my excellent fashion sense. Years ago, she attended one support group meeting and one support group banquet with me en femme and that has been the extent of her participation with Stana.

She realizes that Stana is real and she does not interfere with my need to be Stana. I appreciate that and as a result, I don't live 24/7 as a woman and only femulate once or twice per month.

Shelle asked, "I would like to know how you feel your experiences out en femme differ from someone like me who is transgendered and lives 24/7 as a woman."

I have lived 24/7 as a woman for short extended periods of time.

One difference between those extended 24/7 experiences versus "a day out en femme" is that during a 24/7 experiences, a lot that is special about being a woman during a day out en femme becomes routine over an extended period of time.

It is hard work being a woman every day and I am not sure most guys are up to it, but I would love to try it for a long extended period of time... like maybe the next 40 years.

Happy Backwards Day


The Cut

Model Andrej Pejić (center) femulating in Paris last week.




Wearing Versace.

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Why are you looking at me?


Today, I continue addressing the questions and suggestions readers sent me in response to my call for topics that they would like me to write about or expand upon.

Joan Elizabeth Barette suggested, "I think something that would be welcomed would be if you editorialized on what your perceptions were of a particular femulated day and the interactions with others in greater detail. What do you perceive they perceive of that moment? Speculation can be so much fun!"

In past days out en femme, I tried to read the minds of everyone I encountered. I'd think, "Why did she smile at me?" or "Why is he staring at me?" or "Why did she glance at me?"

On those occasions in which I had to speak with a civilian, I often outed myself. I'd say, "You know I'm trans" or "I do drag" or "Normally, I don't dress like this."

And if I could manage it, I would avoid encounters with people altogether.

I stopped trying to read everyone's mind because I was bad at it. More than once, when I had to speak with someone (like a salesperson) and I assumed they had read me, I would out myself only to discover that they had no clue and were surprised at my revelation.

And I stopped outing myself. What the heck was I thinking when I was outing myself? 

I still wonder what the people I speak with think about me. But I seldom wonder about the people that just pass by. It would just slow me down trying to figure out what everyone was thinking.

For example, walking through the mall last week, I probably passed a couple of hundred people, but most of them were just a blur to me. I paid little or no attention to them and as a result, I am not aware if they paid any attention to me.

I did notice a few women who smiled and/or said "Hello" as they passed by, as well as a couple of guys who were checking me out the way guys check out women. In both cases, it was an affirmation of my presentation as a woman and it made me feel wonderful.

When I entered DressBarn, one of the saleswomen greeted me, but they greet everyone who enters the store, so that indicated nothing. Later, I had to ask that same saleswoman to open a dressing room for me so I could try on the dresses I found and she did so without blinking an eye.

When I paid for the dresses, the same saleswoman handled the transaction. When they ring you up at DressBarn, they ask for your phone number and it reveals who you are. My wife and I both have accounts at DressBarn, so in the past, I have been asked if I was my wife or me when I gave them my phone number.

Last week, the saleswoman, did not ask and proceeded to ring up my order. Either she perceived me to be a woman and rang me up using my wife's account or she did not care. She was pleasant throughout the transaction and we even small-talked about the weather. So, who knows how she perceived me.

And that is typical for my days out en femme.

Happy Birthday, Popeye Doyle



Actor Gene Hackman femulating in the 1996 film The Birdcage.




Wearing Zimmermann.

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Killing Two Birds With One Dress


Today, I continue addressing the questions and suggestions you readers sent me in response to my call for topics that you would like me to write about or expand upon.

Peter Lappin of Male Pattern Boldness fame wrote, "Stana, you often describe your clothes shopping excursions and I'm wondering two things:

"1) Is the shopping more about being out and about in public en femme than it is about buying new clothes (since you could have dresses made and would have not of the challenges of finding dresses or coats with long enough sleeves)?

"2) Where would you most like to be able to go en femme other than shopping: e.g., work on a daily basis, on vacation (other than P-town), no place in particular?"

I seldom shop unless I am dressed en femme to do something else. For example, last week, my main reason for dressing en femme was to meet my editor for lunch and tour the facilities. Other times, I may be doing outreach or dining with friends.

Since I get out en femme less often than I 'd like, I try to kill two birds with one stone and take advantage of being able to try on clothes en femme rather than in boy mode or the often less than satisfactory shopping online.

If I could, I would dress en femme 24/7, that is, I would live as a woman the rest of my life. Since I cannot do that, I dress en femme whenever I can; almost anything I do that does not involve my family, I try to do en femme.

About the Photo

This is a trick that I learned from a genetic girl friend named Jodie: Take a photo of yourself trying on clothes to get a better idea of how the clothes look on you. Sometimes you might miss something if you just depend on how you see yourself in the mirror. In this case, I did not buy the tunic at Macy’s because when I looked at the photo, I realized it was not short enough!

Happy Birthday, Heather Graham



Honolulu’s Blue Note, “where boys will be girls,” circa 1950.


New York magazine

Miroslava Duma, editor at Buro 24/7.

Monday, January 28, 2013

Your Wish Is My Command


I received a great response to my call for topics that you readers would like me to write about or expand upon. Thank-you!

There are so many things to cover that I will be busy for days addressing your questions and suggestions. So without further adieu, let me begin.

Got My Back

Jan Brown wrote, "...a while ago, you alluded to a tool (razor) to shave your back without help. Could you please explain more with pictures."

The tool is the Mangroomer and instead of reinventing the wheel, I direct you to the Mangroomer webpage that does a very good job of describing the device with numerous photos and a video.

By the way, the current Mangroomer is not your father's Mangroomer. It is an improved model that has features that the older model I own lacks like a longer reach and a rechargeable battery. 

Got My Voice

Belinda wrote, "I would be interested whether you have done anything about your voice, and if so what. I know that my voice generally gives me away, but generally women are more social especially with other women. I feel inhibited though, but I don’t feel natural trying to speak girlishly. I would be interested in your experiences."

Many years ago, I bought Melanie Anne Phillips VHS video course "Melanie Speaks," which was intended to teach you how to speak like a woman. I watched the video and was duly impressed, but finding free time to practice with the video at home was a problem. So I copied the audio portion of the course to a cassette tape and practiced during my 35-minute commute to and from work every weekday.

In no time, I got the hang of the course and the voice that came out of my mouth was scary... in a good way! I sounded like a natural born woman!

The only problem was that I felt "silly" using my new voice when I was en femme. Isn't that ridiculous? Here I am, a 6-foot-2 femulator dressed to the nines, but speaking like a woman made me feel silly!

To avoid feeling silly, I convinced myself that I could get away using my natural male voice when I was en femme. Since my male voice is not decidedly masculine and I am soft-spoken, I usually got away with it. So I took the easy way out even though I knew I could do better.

All that was before I realized I was really a trans-woman and not a "plain vanilla crossdresser" as I used to refer to myself. As a trans-woman, I felt that it was time to get more serious about my voice and I now use the female voice I found using the "Melanie Speaks" course.

I am getting better all the time, but occasionally I forget myself and lapse into my old ways. So I must continually make a conscious effort to speak all the time the way Melanie taught me.

Monday, Monday, Can’t Stand That Day



Femulating French soldiers putting on a show during World War II.




Wearing L’wren Scott.

Saturday, January 26, 2013

Take For Granted

IMG_3742_cropped_web When I write about my experiences out en femme, I take some things for granted because I have gone out en femme so often and am very comfortable doing it.

However, I may be letting you readers down because I am leaving out those things I take for granted. I don't want to do that, so if there is anything you would like me to expand upon, please let me know and I will gladly write about it. Also, if there are any topics you would like me to address, I am very willing to consider your suggestions.

Please leave your wish list as a comment below or e-mail it to me directly via stana-stana @ I look forward to hearing from you.

Meanwhile, I leave you with a photo of me wearing the other dress I purchased at DressBarn on Wednesday.

Happy Birthday, Anne Jeffreys



Circa 1930 male and female dressed as female and male, respectively.



New York & Company

Wearing New York & Company.

Friday, January 25, 2013

Wednesday Woman Continues

IMG_3737_cropped_web (Continued from yesterday's post.)

Leaving the mall, I had a ten minute drive to the offices of the organization for whom I freelance.

I worked full-time in those offices over 30 years ago before I began freelancing. Most of the people I worked with then are long gone, but the receptionist is the same friendly woman who I first met back in 1978 when I started work there --- my first professional job after graduation.

She greeted me like an old friend despite the changes on my side of our relationship. We chatted about old times, how things had changed and retirement (hers is imminent, mine not so much).

My editor arrived in the lobby and we went to lunch at a nearby pub. We both ordered chicken pot pies and they were delicious. Over lunch, we talked about business and the hobby we write about. Time passed quickly.

(By the way, my editor has been fully aware of my trans life for a few years now and Wednesday is not the first time she has seen me en femme. In fact, we have had a couple of girls' nights out together in the past.)

Passing in a restaurant is easy as compared to passing while walking through the mall. Once you are seated, you blend in with the other diners. Height is my giveaway, but when I am seated, I look as tall or short as any other woman. Our waitress referred to us as "ladies" and so it went.

After lunch, we drove back to the offices and my editor gave me the nickel tour. Things had changed since I worked there three decades ago and I was anxious to see what was new.

During the tour, we encountered only one other person I knew from the good old days. I am in e-mail contact with this woman a couple of times each month and we have an excellent working relationship. She was happy to see the new me and I was happy to see her.

I enjoyed the tour, thanked my "guide," and exited.

The afternoon was still young and I decided to go shopping again. I drove to the strip mall across the street from West Farms Mall and visited DressBarn.

I found two dresses that I liked and took the two dresses in two sizes to the fitting room. One dress fit in the smaller size (see photo) and the other dress fit in the larger size --- go figure!

I bought both dresses and went home relishing another great day out en femme.

National Opposite Day is Today!



Jimmy Fallon femulates Taylor Swift on his Super Bowl post-game television special, 2012.




Wearing Prabal Gurung for Target Collection.

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Wednesday’s Real Life Experience

2013-01-23_out It was so cold on Wednesday! The temperature never reached 20 and the wind chill made it worse. (The wind chill on Mt. Washington was 
-85 degrees. Can you imagine?)

I dressed for the weather. I wore my purple knee-length, long-sleeved sweater dress, diamond-patterned tights, booties and white fake fur jacket.

I arrived at West Farms Mall shortly after it opened and went straight to Macy's to look for the "perfect dress" that I saw there a couple of weeks ago. I quickly found it in my size and took it to the fitting room along with two other dresses that looked lovely.

The perfect dress fit, but did not look perfect. The other two dresses were even less so. I decided to abandon Macy's and walked to JCPenney at the other end of the mall.

I found four dresses in the JCPenney racks that I took to the fitting room. One dress looked fabulous on me, but I could not zip it up all the way and sadly it was not available in a larger size.

Two of the other dresses were so small that I could not get them on at all. The fourth dress fit and I kind of liked the way it looked on me. But after considering it, I decided not to settle; I could do better. So I exited JCPenney and walked back to the Macy's end of the mall where my car awaited me.

Although I was dressed for the weather outdoors, I was way overdressed for the "weather" inside Macy's and JCPenney. It was uncomfortably warm in the stores. Shedding my fake fur jacket helped a little, but not enough and I was anxious to get out into the fresh air again. And as it was, time was of the essence --- it was time to meet my editor for lunch.

But before I get into that, you may wonder about my real life experience in the mall. I am so used to being out en femme that I don't even think about it, but the e-mails I receive indicate that some of you wonder about it.

Even though the mall had just opened, it was busy --- not Christmas season busy, but there was a lot of foot traffic, all adults because school was in session.

I usually avoid eye contact with males --- don't want to encourage them --- but I did eye catch a half dozen or so checking me out as I walked through the mall.

On the other hand, I watch females more closely to see how they react. Three or four smiled and said "Hello" as we passed each other in the mall. I noticed a few other females looking me over --- trying to figure me out I suppose.

No one, male or female, acted negatively to my presence. No one was outraged and no one laughed. I think most people just perceived me as another middle-aged woman in the mall, which works for me.

(To be continued)

Happy Birthday, Andrew Ellicott



Femulating fashion model Andrej Pejić wearing a cross-dress.



Nieman Marcus

Wearing Emilio Pucci.

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Out Wednesday

macys-red-dress I should be seated with my editor at a restaurant ordering lunch when this is posted.

Before lunch, I planned to shop for a red dress to wear to an upcoming Valentine's Day dance.

I saw the perfect dress in Macy's a couple of weeks ago, but did not have the time to try it on. So I planned to return today and see if it is "me." If not, there are other red dresses and other stores in the mall that sell red dresses. 

After lunch, my editor will give me a tour of the facilities and I will meet some of my virtual co-workers.

It should be a full day en femme. And I will submit all its details to you real soon now.

Happy Birthday, Gail O'Grady

Femulator Vincent McDoom, French model and television presenter.

Wearing Rachel Zoe.

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Fanny and Stella are Fellas

fanny-&-stella Gwen alerted me to a new book about the crossdressing scandal that rocked Victorian Great Britain. Fanny and Stella: The Young Men Who Shocked Victorian England is the title of the book and here is's description:

"The flamboyantly dressed Miss Fanny Park and Miss Stella Boulton are causing a stir in the Strand Theatre. All eyes are riveted upon their lascivious oglings of the gentlemen in the stalls. Moments later they are led away by the police. What followed was a scandal that shocked and titillated Victorian England in equal measure.

"It turned out that the alluring Miss Fanny Park and Miss Stella Boulton were no ordinary young women. Far from it. In fact, they were young men who liked to dress as women. When the Metropolitan Police launched a secret campaign to bring about their downfall, they were arrested and subjected to a sensational show trial in Westminster Hall.

"As the trial of 'the Young Men in Women's Clothes' unfolded, Fanny and Stella's extraordinary lives as wives and daughters, actresses and whores were revealed to an incredulous public."

It sounds like a very interesting read. February 7 is the book's publication date.

Happy Birthday, Christopher Masterson



Actor Christopher Masterson femulating in television’s Malcolm in the Middle, 2003.




Wearing L’Agence.