South Florida gets new women’s magazine Skirt

by Joe Siegel

Skirt South Florida, a new lifestyle and culture magazine aimed at the lesbian community, recently launched a print edition with its February 2024 issue. The women-owned and operated publication is based in Fort Lauderdale.

Lali Safavi, publisher of Skirt

“When I moved to South Florida in 2020, I was always hearing about how socially scattered the women’s community is here, that it wasn’t as active and organized as the men’s community,” said Publisher Lali Safavi. “Diane (Pappafotis, the publication’s marketing director) and I had kicked around the idea of starting something, a magazine, a resource, to try and bring women together socially and give them a stronger sense of community. At that time, the pandemic had shut everything down, so we shelved the idea. In March 2023, we started the magazine online, always with the intention of expanding into print.”

The March issue featured a profile of Guadalupe Garcia, founder of The ANT Project, an arts collaborative based in Mexico City, and photographer Mitzi Falcon. There is also an essay about Women’s History Month.

“We focus on arts and lifestyle, both very broad topics,” Safavi continued. “We don’t cover politics. There are plenty of publications here in South Florida that provide a fine amount of political coverage, so women already have those resources if they want them.”

The readers have welcomed Skirt with open arms, Safavi said. “So far, it’s been nothing but positive. The LGBTQ women who have read it are so happy to have a community publication of their own, which makes us feel incredible. And the men in our community have also been incredibly supportive and complimentary. It’s been wonderful.”

Safavi said she is “optimistic” about the future of media in general, including LGBTQ media. “The reason is simply that with all of the easily accessible technology at our fingertips, anyone with a passion for reporting can go out, get the story, and share it with the public. We don’t have to sit around and wait to see what CNN decides to tell us. Accessibility to technology has really kicked that door down.”

However, Safavi said there is room for improvement. “I would like to see more diverse viewpoints represented in our media. We have people of all political persuasions in our community, and I personally would like to hear from people who don’t share my opinions.”

Safavi continued, ”We always have our eye on stories that inspire, and that can be anything. We publish profile pieces, short stories, creative writing, you name it. Some of it is written by us, and some are contributor pieces from readers. At the end of the day, people love good stories and we are the storytellers.”

Safavi, a native of the Washington, D.C., area, said she has always had “a deep love for community papers,” including magazines and newspapers like Metro Weekly, The City Paper and the Washington Blade.

“Growing up, those publications were part of our community and played an integral role in informing and entertaining us,” Safavi said. “I’ve always felt that community publications are a social glue that bring us closer. Our vision and mission is for Skirt to be that in the South Florida LGBTQ+ women’s community. It is very much a labor of love.”

Volume 26
Issue 1

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