"Like nonbinary fashion, music transcends genre boundaries — blending bops and unexpected beats," MI Leggett, founder of the successful anti-waste, gender-free fashion label Official Rebrand says. "Music and nightlife culture is central to my art practice."
Sorrelle McGill, known to most as DJ x3butterfly, and Leggett draw their inspiration from the electric city of Berlin, where both artists lived in the mid-2010s. Although they didn’t live there at the same time, Leggett and McGill were both deeply moved by Berlin’s queer nightlife scene, leading to their latest collaboration all these years later in New York City.
Official Rebrand originated in Berlin, where Leggett "upcycled artwear" to last "all weekend on Berlin’s infamous party circuit." This creative outlet and passion for anti-waste fashion led Leggett to create a business dedicated to altering unwanted clothes, creating a gender-free space and label in the process.
The same parties impacted McGill’s artistic path as well. During their time in Berlin, they transitioned from performance artist to DJ, capturing the raw and ominous atmosphere of Berlin's underground nightlife scene into their sets with a club twist.
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McGill and Leggett became acquainted during the pandemic when both felt trapped inside, missing the freedom, expression and connection of nightlife. X3butterfly’s HÖR sets helped Leggett "live vicariously" through music "when the dancefloors were shuttered globally and [they] ached for the shared movement and ecstatic community of the club."
While clubs have reopened and the queer nightlife community booms in NYC, Legget still works to forge a nonbinary space in the city’s fashion landscape that still very much functions in two categories: men’s and women’s clothing. "Sorrelle’s sound fits perfectly with this concept," Legget tells PAPER, explaining how x3butterfly's sets are known for "prioritizing the eclectic, combining jungle, drum and bass, R&B, dubstep, techno and other world sounds, taking listeners on a story-telling journey while simultaneously keeping them locked on the dance floor."
Check out x3butterfly’s gender-fluid mixes for their collaboration with Official Rebrand, below.
Photography: Karl-hens Pompilus
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