LES REBELLES #003: Roman Sipe

June marks the beginning of Pride Month, a time to celebrate the rich tapestry of the LGBTQ+ community and its countless contributions to culture, fashion, and innovation. This year, we're spotlighting a groundbreaking designer who's making waves in the fashion world with his bold and inclusive creations. Meet the visionary behind MENAGERIÉ, Roman Sipe, the revolutionary brand paving the way for men in lingerie. Join us as we dive into the inspiring journey of this trailblazing designer and explore how MENAGERIÉ is not just a brand, but a movement celebrating love, pride, and individuality in every stitch.

MENAGERIÉ has made some incredible strides - being the premiere producer of luxe undergarments for men, developing a custom in house lace, dabbling in swim, RTW and now a highly curated online boutique. What has been your biggest achievement to date? What made you the most proud as a designer?

Reflecting on nearly a decade of building MENAGERIÉ, it's challenging to pinpoint just one achievement amidst the many milestones that once seemed beyond reach. But there are a few that stand out more profoundly. 

Firstly, in 2016, being featured on Inside Edition was surreal. Growing up, I watched the program on my grandmother's kitchen TV, never imagining my face and my brand gracing its screens. I had only launched the brand about a year or so prior. This was a moment of validation and realization that something very special was happening.

Secondly, I always associated luxury with being 'Made in Italy.’ Therefore my goal from the beginning was to be producing there. Making this dream a reality and now calling Italy my part-time home has been nothing short of a dream come true, aligning with my vision of crafting an even more luxurious experience for our customers. 

Being in Italy brought me thousands of miles closer to another dream of mine. For years, images by photographer Michael Oliver Love filled my mood boards, and I dreamt of one day having him shoot a campaign for MENAGERIÉ. However, given the distance between Los Angeles, where I resided, and South Africa, it just seemed impossible. Yet, while in Italy, I decided to reach out. Just a few weeks later, I found myself in Cape Town, shooting my very first campaign with the photographer of my dreams. 

More recently creating pieces for Lenny Kravitz. I've been reaching out to his stylist persistently through direct messages and random emails over the years. When I first started MENAGERIÉ, I compiled a list of celebrities whom I believed epitomized the "MENAGERIÉ MAN" and Lenny was actually #1. However, I noticed that Lenny rarely wore lace, except for that one occasion at the Met Gala, so I figured it just might not happen. Then, unexpectedly on January 8th, I received a direct message from Rodney Burns, Lenny’s Stylist, asking if I was in LA. Coincidentally, I was heading there the next day. Less than a month later, Lenny appeared in public wearing a custom MENAGERIÉ lace and leather trench coat.

As a designer, I am constantly exposed to extraordinary experiences that often feel surreal. However, what fills me with the greatest sense of pride is being able to share these moments with my family and friends. Their unwavering support and belief in my journey over the years serve as my driving force. Whether it's recounting the collaboration with Lenny Kravitz to my aunts back home in Pennsylvania or witnessing the excitement in my younger cousin's eyes as she discovers our lace adorned with "MENAGERIÉ," and watches a video of the intricate lace-making process. These moments of connection, inspiration, and realization of dreams are what truly define success for me. They remind me how important it is for me to continue to create, believe in myself and my vision.


MENAGERIÉ has been worn by countless celebrities by the likes of Lizzo, Lil Nas X, Sam Smith, Wendy Williams and so many more. Who is your dream celebrity, someone you would kill to see MENAGERIÉ in?

My ultimate dream would have been to witness Prince adorned in something glorious from MENAGERIÉ. I just did a quick search on the most influential male celebrities of 2024, none of them particularly resonate with me. However, there are a couple of exceptional Italian artists like Mahmood and Blanco whom I would love to see in something special from MENAGERIÉ. Lately, my fascination has been drawn towards the elegance of ballroom dancing and male ballet performers, leaving me yearning to witness individuals from these realms adorned in MENAGERIÉ but no one specific yet.

Right now I’m really just basking in this Lenny Kravitz moment.

You have a very expensive background in styling and casting. How do you think that's impacted the success of Menagerié?

I’ve been working well over a decade in various facets of the fashion industry, including marketing, creative direction, styling, and casting. This experience has definitely played a major role in the success of MENAGERIÉ. Moreover, my academic foundation in finance has provided me with a unique perspective on managing the business side of the brand. As a brand owner, wearing multiple hats is inevitable, and I am grateful for the diverse skill set I've cultivated over the years. Without it, navigating the complexities of the industry and building the brand from the ground up would have been far more challenging.

 Our signature question at Les Belles - when do you feel most beautiful?

I find beauty in various moments of my life, but if I were to pinpoint when I feel most beautiful, it's when I'm getting glam and dressing up for dinner or a night out. There's something empowering about taking the time to enhance my appearance with hair, makeup, and fashion, knowing that I'm stepping out feeling confident and ready to embrace the occasion. While I appreciate being home “satin pants, hair tied, chilling with no makeup on” there's a special allure in the process of transforming into a version of myself that radiates confidence and elegance.

I’d love to hear what’s next for MENAGERIÉ. The brand has already done so much, each milestone bigger and better than the last. Do you have any upcoming exciting new product launches or events you’d like to talk about? Plug away.

Recently, we have expanded MENAGERIÉ from a single-brand entity to a multi-brand online boutique. After nearly a decade of crafting men's lingerie, I am excited to see the sector flourishing and to introduce not only my own brand but also other luxurious mens lingerie brands to our audience. As MENAGERIÉ takes a leading role in the men's lingerie movement, I am committed to exploring avenues beyond traditional offerings, including researching the needs of the transmasculine community and developing shapewear solutions for all men. This journey represents not just growth but also a deeper commitment to inclusivity and innovation within the industry.