You may know Rance from the hit USA TV soap, produced by Oprah Winfrey’s Network, Kings of Napa. Or star as the lead character Nabo Sensugali in Las Meninas, feature film Trapeze USA or for his role as cohost of Love is Quarantine, a viral dating show on Instagram based on the Netflix hit Love is Blind. Evidently, he’s a busy boy!
We know Rance for his impeccable fashion sense, as documented on Instagram. I was so excited to finally get in touch with Rance to learn more about his style inspirations, favourite places to shop, and his acting career!
Chamiah: Now, I’ve been loving your content for a while now, but for those who don't know you, please introduce yourself, in whatever way feels authentic…
My name is Rance Nix. I'm an actor, host, model and comedian originally from Atlanta, Georgia but currently holding it down in New York City.
You recently featured on an American TV show called The Kings of Napa, what was that like?!
As an actor, one always dreams of booking a lead role in a television show or film. For me, The Kings of Napa was that dream come true. I booked a role, the cast and crew were wonderful, the script was well written, my character Dana King was written for me to play the part, Dana had his own story arc within the season of the show, and it was a challenging experience that stretched me as an actor but didn't break me. Truly, the dream was better than anything I could have ever imagined. And speaking of clothes, all of my character's clothes were specifically tailored to me!
A 31 year old, straight African American man with short hair and dark brown eyes, standing 4'6" tall. He wears a deep purple suit, with a white shirt and black shoes, he’s stood in a dining room.
That sounds amazing! There’s nothing better realising your dream, I know that from showing at London Fashion Week last year!
How important is it that we feature short stature people in ‘every-day’ roles in the media?
I believe it's super important. People of short stature exist and thrive every day in the real world and that should be represented in the media.
Exactly, I couldn’t agree more! So, what kind of feedback have you received since the show?
The feedback has been really positive. Fans of the show, friends, and family, all hated my character Dana King, but in the best way. Their reactions to my character were a sign for me that I did my acting job well. My personality is nothing like my character's on the show so people that know me really struggled with how to feel about Dana King. Even fans that meet me for the first time can tell I'm nothing like my character and always make a point to say, "I can't STAND your character! But you were really killin it!"
📷Kelsey Cherry. A 31 year old, straight African American man with short hair and dark brown eyes, standing 4'6" tall. He wears black trousers, a black hoodie, blue and black trainers, and a grey blazer. He sits on a black leather stool in a coat room with a deep red carpet.
At least they can decipher you from your character!
Going into the fashion segment (my favourite), how would you describe your personal style?
I would describe my style as "J Crew with a dash of Hypebeast." I love classic staple pieces and essential garments that never go out of style with splashes of streetwear like my Jordan 1s or Supreme Camp Cap.
Who are your style icons and inspirations?
I get a lot of my style inspiration from my dad. He taught me the importance of dressing well, always looking professional, and making a strong first impression in any room. I also love Aziz Ansari's style, especially his character Dev's style from the show Master of None. Any time I need outfit inspiration, I Google search his fits. Aziz Ansari/Dev are classy and put together, but also comfortable.
A collage of Aziz’ style, wearing checked suits, brown trousers and an overall preppy look. Aziz is an Asian man with brown skin and dark wavy short hair.
I’ve never looked at Aziz as style inspo, but now you say it, his simple, preppy style is very contemporary. Now, I have never come across a petite clothing brand for men, do they even exist?! If so, can you recommend some places that shorter men can shop (other than ourselves😏)…
To my knowledge I don't know of a petite clothing brand specifically for men besides CDF. I shop across many different stores to complete my wardrobe and have a tailor who helps me with the rest. For the most part I wear boys clothes or extra small mens basics. Most of my everyday garments are from the boys section of J Crew: oxford shirts, chino pants, shorts, blazers, sweaters, even suits. Their boys section really has a solid selection of options that an adult man with dwarfism can wear.
I love Uniqlo's U Crew Neck Short-Sleeve T-Shirt. That t-shirt with a pair of J Crew chinos and my white Nike Blazers is my uniform. For more fashion forward items I shop at Zara/H&M. I knooooow, they're fast fashion brands but anything I buy from those stores I keep forever. Those stores are also the best bet for finding items that are on trend that fit me. For formal wear, I have a couple custom suits. I also have a few boy's suits that I bought extra large (for my broad shoulders and wide hips) and tailor to my body with my tailor. I love that cheat code! Buying a boys suit and taking it to the tailor saves me so much money. For shoes, I wear boys shoes and sometimes women's shoes. Finding formal shoes in my size is still pretty tough. I'm actually on the hunt for some chocolate suede men's Italian loafers in my size. If you know anyone in Europe that can help, LET ME KNOW!
I need answers!! I’ve found these links that could be helpful in your search for Dwarfism-friendly shoes for boys/men:
- Womens brown suede Italian loafers
- Womens suede brown loafers
- Russel and Bromley Suede loafers
- Oliver Sweeney tassel loafers
- River Island tassel loafers
- Mango Lace-up leather shoes
- Schuh tan leather loafers
- Next boys tassel loafers
- Next wide fit tassel loafers
- Romano suede boy loafers
In terms of fast fashion, yes we know places like Zara and H&M are awful, but if you invest in pieces that’ll last you through years of wear, AND you already find it more difficult to find clothing that fits, then don’t beat yourself up about it.
📷Kelsey Cherry. A 31 year old, straight African American man with short hair and dark brown eyes, standing 4'6" tall. He wears a checked suit in deep, muted blue and green, with black formal boots. He is stood on a garden with flourishing shrubbery behind him.
Are there any specific fashion tips or styling tricks that you can share for shorter men to enhance their overall appearance?
Tailoring, tailoring, tailoring, TAILORING!!!!! Wearing clothes that fit make any person look better and more confident. Also, designer means nothing if it doesn't fit. There have been plenty of times where I've worn a tailored boys suit to a function and looked sharper than anyone in the room.
Couldn’t agree more, when you feel confident and comfortable in your clothing, you hold yourself better! So, what future trends do you see in the world of short stature clothing for men?
To be honest, I'm not sure. Maybe I'm missing something but besides CDF, I have yet to see the fashion industry trend towards options for men of short stature. However, I hope this changes.
What advice would you give to other petite individuals who struggle to find clothing that fits their proportions well?
It takes time to find and tailor clothing that fits your personal style and body proportions well. Building out my wardrobe, finding a tailor, feeling comfortable with that tailor, and developing my own style has taken years. But it's possible! And even now, the process for me is still ongoing and still takes a little extra effort. A week or so ago I ordered a boys suit jacket three times in three different sizes because I couldn't figure out which boys size would fit me after tailoring. I ended up having to pass on it because none of the sizes worked. It was a bummer, but then a week or so later I found another boys suit that would work well instead. It's currently at the tailor as we speak.
A 31 year old, straight African American man with short hair and dark brown eyes, standing 4'6" tall. He wears blue denim jeans, white trainers, a white tshirt and a bright pink cardigan. He poses for a mirror selfie in a colourful bedroom.
That’s a really important part, it takes time to develop a personal style and tailoring system that works for you. With CDF developing currently, hopefully it won’t be long before you’re able to buy clothing that fits you ‘off the rack’; making it faster, more affordable, and easier than your current system!
What are some of the main challenges you commonly encounter when shopping for clothing?
XS options aren't always carried or made for shorter men. I love shopping in the boys section, but sometimes I want a garment without phrases like "NO BAD DAYS" etched across the back. Love the sentiment but I also just want a garment for the style not the motto.
Your fashion content on Instagram is honestly top tier, what inspires you to create and capture such original looks?
I love fashion, I love looking good, I love feeling confident, and I love putting people on notice that I can participate in the fashion space as well!
Yes, yes, yes! I love that mentality!! How have you found the world of content creation online, do you find it an overall positive place to be?
I believe so, yes. I try to ignore the haters and people who say negative things. I've found that if I only create to please everyone or avoid negative feedback, I'll never really put anything out. I try to focus on creating what I believe in for myself and the people who enjoy my work.
A 31 year old, straight African American man with short hair and dark brown eyes, standing 4'6" tall. He wears beige colour trousers, brown suede shoes with white and blue socks (with a number 1 on), and a navy knitted jumper. He poses with one leg perched on a bench, arm resting on his knee, holding his knuckle on his cheek. He is in an autumnal park with yellow leaves along the floor.
That’s got to be the best way to be. There are so little amount of male role models in this space, what message do you hope to send to other short stature men through your platform?
Fashion aside, have confidence in yourself period. Anyone that doesn't fully appreciate you for you and ALL of you, ignore them and keep it pushing. Concerning fashion, aye! "Look good, feel good, perform and be great!" That's my motto. There's no reason to be wearing clothes that don't fit you. It takes a little extra effort but over time, you can do the damn thing and looking fly is an amazing addition to the confidence you already have in you.
Yes 👏 And lastly, what would you like to see next in the fashion industry?
More people that happen to have dwarfism, including myself, being the face of big fashion brands.
Yes x100!! ‘People that happen to have Dwarfism’ is a quote to remember, we’ll definitely keep in touch as our brand grows in the short stature fashion space.
To catch up on everything Rance gets up to fashion, personal life, or career wise, make sure to follow his Instagram @rancenix. And keep your eyes peeled as our business continues to grow in the short stature fashion market!