On each Tuesday in June, 10% of our sales will go to the Q Center, the wonderful LGBTQ community center just around the corner from us in North Portland. The Q Center is an absolute gem of an organization; here’s their description of what they do:
Q Center is a 501c3 non-profit organization with a mission to increase the visibility of and foster connection within metropolitan Portland’s Lesbian Gay Bisexual Transgender Questioning (LGBTQ) community. The center builds public awareness and support, and celebrates LGBTQ diversity through art, culture, and collaborative community programming.
There are dozens of events and groups that meet here, some focused on specific topics (like coming out or gender identity) and others aimed at fun social interactions (like sing-along piano cabarets or craft nights). Entry to most of these is sliding-scale and run by dedicated volunteers, keeping Q Center truly community-driven and accessible.
In addition to our programmatic offerings, our 5,000 sq/ft facility is also a safe and friendly place to spend an afternoon. With our monthly art exhibits, extensive library collection, Resource Wall, and free WiFi access, there’s always something to see and learn here at Q Center.
Come visit us and find a new toy on any Tuesday in June, and 10% of your purchase will go to the Q Center!
Amy Dentata is a writer, game designer, and performer who touches on topics including trauma recovery, mental illness, sexuality, and transgender issues on her website and elsewhere. Recently she wrote something amazing on PinkLabel.tv: “Fumbling Towards Humanity: How Trans Grrrls Helped Me Open Up to My Partner.”
We knew Courtney Trouble’s Trans Grrrls was a very special porn film, but Dentata’s piece illuminates just how transformative it can be to see someone like yourself in erotic imagery.
As a trans woman, Dentata encounters many difficulties when it comes to not just dating, but simply existing in the world. When dating, she has to worry about a lack of chemistry, the challenges of physical intimacy, and her personal safety. Sex, even masturbation, is a minefield — Dentata can feel uncomfortable, anxious, detached from her body. It doesn’t help that in both mainstream media and mainstream porn, trans people are made to be punchlines, victims of violence, or taboo sex objects. Genuine, compassionate representation is almost impossible to find.
When Dentata started dating a cisgender woman named Kate, she found a partner who was willing to take the time to learn how to pleasure her. Still, during their first couple of sexual encounters, Dentata couldn’t orgasm. One night ended in tears when Dentata was overcome by body dysphoria and upsetting anti-trans thoughts.
But the third time was different. That night, they popped in Trans Grrrls and began touching each other while watching the first scene, featuring Chelsea Poe and Maxine Holloway. Dentata writes:
. . . the scene cut to an apartment, and Chelsea and Maxine tore off each other’s clothes. There on the screen was someone like me, having sex with someone like Kate. They were both happy, enthusiastic, and into each other. No “surprise reveal”, no horrified reaction shots, no cis gaze ruminating on how a trans partner might affect a cis person’s feelings about their sexual orientation. Just two women fucking.
It made me feel human. And naked, even though my clothes were already off. A layer of psychic armor hardened by slurs, stereotypes, and violence melted off my body. It felt like the universe said to me, “We have a place for you. You belong here.”
I said to Kate, “In a little bit you’re going to find out something I love about Maxine.” Maxine laughs when she comes, and it is so adorable. Kate agreed. Sometime after the second scene of the film, I had an amazing orgasm, all thanks to Kate. The isolation I felt during our previous encounters washed away. That orgasm was a revelation, a moment of healing, and I laughed like Maxine through the intense torrent of emotions. That was the first time I’ve ever laughed while coming instead of crying.
That was the night Amy Dentata felt like she belonged. Like there was a place in the world for her body, her identity, her sexuality. Her partner confirmed it — along with the performers in Trans Grrrls — and she was able to experience the pleasure everyone deserves.
Read the whole piece at PinkLabel.tv.
Wednesday, August 20th — 7:30 p.m. — $20
Are you interested in anal pleasure but not sure where to get started? Already tried anal play but wanting to learn some fun tricks and techniques? Whether you’re brand new to the wonderful world of anal or already have some backdoor experience, this class is sure to teach you something new!
In this educational and humorous workshop, AJ will confront taboos, go over anal anatomy, prostate, and the G-spot, discuss anal penetration for beginners, and show great positions for anal sex. She’ll also cover safety and hygiene and give you the inside scoop on all the best lubes and anal toys! This class is open to all genders and sexual appetites.
AJ (aka Amory Jane) is one of She Bop’s in-house sex educators. She graduated with a master’s degree from Lewis & Clark College, where she studied Sex Therapy and Marriage, Couple, & Family Counseling. She has facilitated multiple discussion groups and taught dozens of sex education workshops around Portland and the Midwest. She also moonlights as a sex-positive relationship coach.
Limited space available — sign up online!
What do you do when your partner lacks blowjob skills? Where do you go for training when you wish to improve your own? Here!
M. Makael Newby is a relationship coach and dance instructor with a particular skill for breaking physical action into components and teaching them with enthusiasm… and blowjobs are one of her favorite things. This class will educate both the givers and receivers. Come learn about creating anticipation, communication, preparing for success, hand skills, tongue tricks, prostate massage, deep throating, sloppy BJs, choking and forced gagging for both bio and strap-on penises. Live demo (on dildo) included.
Many of these techniques are included in My Erotic Adventure, her choose-your-own styled erotic novel. Get empowered to give and receive extraordinary head!
Limited space available — sign up online!
Sunday, July 27th — 7:30 p.m. — $20
Are you intrigued by the idea of tying someone up and having your way with them, or perhaps being restrained while someone does delightfully kinky things to you? Well, this class is designed to be a friendly first step towards that goal!
This class will cover the many hot ways bondage can be used (it’s not just about dominance, folks!), address safety concerns, and teach three simple and functional ties. We will then experiment with creative ways of applying these basic techniques to put people in a variety of compromising positions. Handouts and online video links will be distributed to help remind you of key skills when you get home.
Please come wearing comfortable clothes that you can move around in. If you have rope or a soft mat, please bring them (otherwise we will have some extras that can be shared). You may want to come with a practice partner, but it isn’t necessary (please note that the $20 registration is per person). People of all genders and orientations are very welcome.
Chris is a happy, sex-positive perv who has been grinning his way through the kink scene for about eight years. He helps organize CockCircus, Seattle’s only public BDSM party for men, and enjoys evangelizing about the many virtues of bondage.
Limited space available — sign up online!
Thursday, July 17th — 7:30 p.m. — $20
A growing number of people are exploring alternatives to monogamy, through swinging, polyamory, and other types of open relationships. If you or someone you know are one of those people, this might be the workshop for you!
Whether you are curious about opening up, already enjoying polyamory and wanting to do it even better, or facing obstacles in your non-monogamous relationship, AJ will help walk you through the challenges and benefits of ethical non-monogamy. She will discuss different styles of open relationships, talk about how to deal with common issues such as jealousy, resentment, time management, miscommunication, and New Relationship Energy (NRE), and will offer tips on dating/meeting new people, navigating different relationship structures and hierarchies, and coming out poly.
In this interactive workshop, AJ will guide participants through exercises that help them negotiate agreements/boundaries, design their own ideal open relationships, and practice nonviolent communication for deeper, more fulfilling connections. There will also be the option to hear about real-life triumphs and tribulations of other non-mono people in addition to learning how to find and build community. This is a 2-hour class.
AJ (aka Amory Jane) is one of She Bop’s in-house sex educators. She graduated with a master’s degree from Lewis & Clark College, where she studied Sex Therapy and Marriage, Couple, & Family Counseling. She has facilitated multiple discussion groups and taught dozens of sex education workshops around Portland and the Midwest. She also moonlights as a relationship coach, working with polyamorous individuals and couples in open relationships. AJ is an active member of the Portland poly community.
Limited space available — sign up online!
It’s been just over a year since Portland artist Erika Moen launched Oh Joy Sex Toy, and to say it has been a roaring success would be putting it lightly. This playful, hilarious, and informative sex-themed comic has become very popular, and the work that it has done as a sex education resource is probably immeasurable.
Bite-sized sex education is exactly what Moen hoped to achieve with the comic, she explains in this great article at The Daily Beast. Her own sex education was minimal at best, and the scare tactics it utilized left her “super, super terrified of sex and naked bodies.” For a long time, Moen dreamed of addressing the huge holes in American sex education. After 15 years of making webcomics, and after participating in a comic strip reality show called Strip Search, she decided to take the plunge and turn that idea into a reality.
Moen explains to The Daily Beast:
While I don’t think every artist everywhere has a responsibility to educate their audience, it’s a role that works for me. People online spend so much time criticizing the things they don’t like about the world, about the media, about our society. That’s valuable. Now I want to see people creating the media they want to exist. My sex education was horrific and scarring, so now I’m trying to make a resource that I personally needed back then and it just so happens that it’s still needed today.
The comic format is appealing, Moen says, because pictures make readers more receptive to new information. Especially when it comes to sex, visual material is easier to understand. Drawings have always been used as sex education — to warn against venereal disease during war, in pamphlets at Planned Parenthood — but Moen’s take is much more progressive.
Moen spends a week developing each strip, and she is the cog in each step of the process — a single person acting as writer, penciler, inker, colorist, and letterist. Guest illustrators step in from time to time, to provide variety and discuss topics outside Moen’s areas of expertise. For example, Emi Gennis contributed a strip about the history of the vibrator, while Amanda Lafrenais recounted “Dildo Misadventures” and Lucy Knisley shared her experience with the birth control implant.
Since the inception of the site, Moen has published tons of comics, from reviews of some of our favorite things (like the Ina 2, Bandit, Pure Plugs, Moon Cup, Sliquid H2O, and Delight) to guides on anal sex, cock rings, cunnilingus, and introducing sex toys into relationships, and even illustrated interviews with porn stars Jiz Lee and Stoya.
No matter the topic, Oh Joy Sex Toy is always a treat. New strips are published each Tuesday, and the comic is serialized at Bitch. You can follow Erika Moen on Twitter, Facebook, Tumblr, and her main site.
QDoc, Portland’s queer documentary film festival, is coming up next weekend (May 15-18), and we have a couple pairs of tickets to one of the screenings to give away! Since 2007, QDoc has shown award-winning historical films, personal stories, artist biographies, experimental work and topical films fresh from top-tier festivals.
One of our picks from this year’s line-up? Derby Crazy Love, which takes viewers into the heart of the emerging roller derby phenomenon, a vibrant DIY community of third wave feminist empowerment where athletics and spectacle combine for an adrenaline-inducing experience. Go behind the scenes of one of the most anticipated rematches in derby history as Montreal’s New Skids on the Block, a team of tattooed misfits, take on UK powerhouse London Rollergirls, while reigning world champions New York’s Gotham Girls defend their title.
Do you want to see Derby Crazy Love on Friday, May 16th at 9 p.m. at McMenamins Kennedy School Theater? Enter our giveaway for a pair of tickets using the widget below!
Deadline for entries is Sunday, May 11th at 11:59 p.m. PST. Winners will be notified via email.
April showers bring May… books? 50 Shades of Kink, Tristan Taormino’s latest guidebook, is here and it’s everything you’d expect from her: snappy, smart, and accessible. We also added Smut Peddler, a collection of 24 dirty comics featuring Portland’s own Erika Moen (of Oh Joy Sex Toy fame), and The Jealousy Workbook: Exercises and Insights for Managing Open Relationships.
For our Gender / Politics section, we picked up the classic Gender Outlaw by Kate Bornstein, Nobody Passes: Rejecting the Rules of Gender and Conformity, and a book with the most adorable child we’ve ever seen on the cover, Gender Born, Gender Made: Raising Healthy Gender Non-Conforming Children.
We added two more of whirlwind porn performer Madison Young‘s creations to our shelves: Tail of a Bondage Model and Bondage Boob Tube. Both feature an array of hot bondage activities, such as rope suspensions, medical play, cupping, face smacking, female domination, spankings, and much more.
Because your butt deserves the best, take a look at Vixen Creations’ Gemstones, 100% silicone anal beads in a variety of sizes for any experience level. They’re perfect for fans of traditional anal beads, with enough space between each bulb to produce a glorious popping sensation as you pull them out. And because they’re made of medical grade silicone, they can be boiled or tossed in the dishwasher for cleaning.
We also have two new items for penises that we’re pretty excited about. The Tenga 3D sleeve is a sleek, less expensive alternative to Tenga’s popular Flip Hole series. It’s soft and flexible, with a couple internal texture options, and a display case that also serves as a drying rack. The CB-6000 is a well-loved, sturdy polycarbonate chastity device that comes with a brass padlock and five different rings and spacers for optimum fit.
Last but not least, sometimes it’s good when things suck. Case in point: our new See-Thru Nipple Boosters, Max Twist Nipple Suckers, and Max Twist Clit & Nipple Triple Sucker Set. Each set offers pleasurable suction in a compact package. So get to sucking!
Throughout the month of May, 10% of all purchases made at She Bop on Tuesdays will go to TransActive’s In A Bind program! TransActive is a Portland-based non-profit that provides a wide range of services to transgender and gender nonconforming children, youth, and their families. Their In A Bind program provides chest binders to trans-masculine youth in need. It is the first national chest binder donation/distribution program, with over 1,300 people on the waiting list for a binder.
All proceeds from this fundraiser will be used to purchase binders from our distributor and donate them to TransActive. You are also welcome to visit the shop to donate binders.
So come on down to the shop on any Tuesday in May to support this amazing program. Be sure to follow TransActive on Facebook and Twitter, and check out this interview with the Program Coordinator for In A Bind, conducted by our very own sales associate and educator, Wyatt Riot!
Welcome to She Bop’s blog!
She Bop is a women-owned sex toy boutique specializing in body safe products and education. Our mission is to promote healthy and safe sexuality by offering quality products and educational workshops in a fun and comfortable environment. She Bop welcomes people of all genders and sexual orientations.
- March 1, 2015 – Let's Play with Rope Tonight!: A Friendly Introduction to Bondage
- March 11, 2015 – Tease a Peel: Classic Burlesque Peeling Techniques
- March 18, 2015 – Bon Appetit!: The Fine Art of Cunnilingus
- April 1, 2015 – Foolin' Around with Emily Nagoski & Erika Moen
- April 12, 2015 – Full-Bodied Fellatio
- April 23, 2015 – Renaming Desire: Trans/Non-Trans Sex Revisited
- Thx @SossityWrites for such kind words about us in @PQmonthly!! We were happy to help you pick a toy for your needs. http://t.co/gwIgPhB0wj
- Yup, we're open regular hours today! 11 am - 7 pm. Need a late V-Day gift? Have a gift certificate burning a hole in yr pocket? Come see us!
- Have you caught @tripo's Becoming Dr. Ruth yet? There are still showings through the end of the month! http://t.co/tKYCHGmGrG
- Last day of Small Shops, Big Hearts on Mississippi! Stop by for chocolates and V-Day shopping; visit our neighbors! http://t.co/jPjKCLhipb
- Happy happy Valentine's Day!! We'll be staying open until 9 pm tonight at both our locations in case you need us! http://t.co/9nGBHvTMXw
- It's the day before Valentine's Day, so we're staying open an hour later at both locations, tonight & tomorrow night! http://t.co/b3zuIwjkcw
- Mississippi Ave is the place to be for the next 2 days! Gift specials, wine, art, etc! Pssst, we have chocolates! http://t.co/jPjKCLhipb
- Basic Rights Oregon
- Bitch Magazine
- Bradley Angle
- BUST Magazine
- Dirty Playground
- In Other Words
- Mississippi Studios
- Orchestre L'Pow!
- Pants-Off Productions
- Portland Oregon Women's Film Festival
- Portland Women's Crisis Line
- Progressive Pleasure Club
- Pucker Up
- Q Center
- Queer Resource Center
- Quest Center for Integrative Health
- Raphael House
- Sex Worker Outreach Coalition
- The Portland Mercury