His own daughter was struggling to find bikini bottoms that would make her feel both comfortable and confident as a transgender girl. And Jamie Alexander (her father) decided to solve the problem himself.
For years, Alexander watched as his now-12-year-old daughter struggled to find swimsuits that she felt comfortable wearing. In one of the interviews, he mentioned that when Ruby transitioned, she often wore board shorts and sweatpants in place of traditional swimsuits. But at age 11, she expressed interest in wearing a bikini.
And that’s when the idea struck. “Everything I saw was heavily branded just to trans people and had a quilted pad in the front. They didn’t look like normal bikinis,” Jamie said in an interview with Today, pointing out the limited clothing market for transgender and gender creative children.
And Rubies was born. Alexander created a new clothing brand with a specific goal of producing form-fitting clothing for transgender children up to a size 20.
His first product: the Ruby Shaping Bikini Bottom.
“I wanted to create a garment that looks and feels like a regular bikini and a brand that resonates with kids, not just trans kids.”
He interviewed 50-60 different families he found on Facebook groups to see what they were looking for in swimwear. “The best businesses are ones that solve real problems,” Alexander said. “I knew we had a problem, but I didn’t know if everyone else did.”
“The outside is made of a shaping spandex, and in the inside, there are two layers of mesh that keep everything in place. No need for tucking or large padding in the front,” Ruby explains in the video above.
In addition to the bikini bottoms, the brand sells a one-piece swimsuit ($51) that includes the same compression fabric as the bikini bottoms.
His bikini bottoms were such a hit that many trans girls were wearing them as underwear. He found out that it made them feel confident and happy. And now, Alexander is expanding the company to include real underwear made with cotton fabric.
Alexander plans to keep working with his daughter to create more clothing solutions for transgender kids and teens
Ruby, plays an active role in the development of the brand. She models samples, gives feedback on samples, and approves all of the products before they’re listed for sale.
“To know these kids have been able to go back to their activities and feel comfortable wearing Rubies, with a lot of them wearing them under leggings, that’s what I’m most proud of,” he said.
“I would like to imagine a world where kids can wear whatever they want, irrespective of their anatomy. I am certain in another generation this will be the case, at least in the progressive cities of North America. In the meantime, we can find ways to help our kids express themselves safely.”
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