BLUF blog

Welcome to BLUF's blog. Here you'll find selection articles that we hope will be of interest to the wider community, not just BLUF members.

Latest articles

BLUF Minneapolis on Telegram, 04 June 2024

Norden Plus, 05 May 2024

The promise of a new year, 21 December 2023

Twin Cities Leather Weekend 2023, 01 November 2023

The Eagle Minneapolis new branding and new life, 06 July 2023

Working on a dream, 13 April 2023

Time to talk, 05 March 2023

BLUF statement regarding Touché, 17 November 2022

What's new in BLUF v4.5, 25 August 2022

On secession, 22 August 2022

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BLUF blog posts

Norden Plus

The Dutch Leather and fetish scene has seen a huge revival in recent years, evident from the many well-attended events throughout the country. On International Fetish Day (19 Jan 2024) leather and fetish men got together all over the world at numerous parties and also in Tilburg in The Netherlands … 05 May 2024

The Eagle Minneapolis new branding and new life

After a few years in limbo about its future, the Minneapolis Eagle comes back with a new attitude. Known until recently as the EagleBOLTbar, this bar in downtown Minneapolis has served as the unofficial home to the Minneapolis BLUF meet-and-greet and other leather and fetish clubs and events. Shortly before … 06 Jul 2023

Working on a dream

The BLUF website and apps are a work in progress. When I took over running the site, we were running what was effectively the second version, which allowed people to see who was online, to perform simple searches, and send an email to other members. That was extended with a … 13 Apr 2023

Time to talk

Content warning: this post contains references to depression, anxiety, substance abuse, domestic violence, suicide. On the fifth of March, 1991, my twin brother died. Some of you will already know this; it's not a secret, and indeed it was something I talked about in a Fireside Chat video recorded a … 05 Mar 2023

BLUF statement regarding Touché

The following statement has been issued by BLUF, following discussions between HQ in London, and our volunteer team in Chicago: We noted with concern the events that happened at Touché's recent anniversary earlier this month, and the initial response of the bar management. We had initially intended to make a … 17 Nov 2022

What's new in BLUF v4.5

BLUF 4.5 is this year's major update of the BLUF platform, due to go live on 1st September. Here's an overview of what you'll find. Updated menus I've tweaked some of the menus, removing most of the options that required a sub-menu, which will make navigation easier of many … 25 Aug 2022

On secession

Around the world, nations and borders change. Sometimes it happens dramatically, and cataclysmically, as in the former Yugoslavia, and sometimes it's more measured, the result of years of campaigning. When it does happen, though, it means change, and a certain amount of upheaval. There will be those who don't like … 22 Aug 2022

Pink Triangle Trainers

Before the Pride flag, there was the pink triangle. Often worn as a discreet lapel pin, it was a subtle way of indicating your sexuality, in a time when being out was more difficult. Before that, though - and the reason it was adopted - were the camps. Just as … 10 Jun 2022

Farewell to The Backstreet

After just over thirty seven years, The Backstreet is closing its doors on 17th July. It goes out on a high, having won the Best Bar award at this year's X-Awards in Antwerp. The world in which the club first opened has changed - our rights as gay men have … 30 May 2022

The cost of joining BLUF

I had an email recently from a prospective member, in which he mentioned that he estimated it would cost him around £1,000 to go to one of the London leather stores and buy himself all the gear he needed to join BLUF. Since this is not an uncommon perception … 18 May 2022

Cracking out the BLUFcoin

As every tech bro knows, crypto-currency is the future. A brave future where you can own a digital certificate that proves you've bought a digital certificate, and every embarassing thing you've ever done is stored on the blockchain, forever. There's money to be made in crypto, and so I'm delighted … 01 Apr 2022

BLUF Spring Newsletter, 2022

Dear member, Finally, after the last two years, it looks like things are slowly getting back towards something more normal. In many countries, pandemic restrictions have been relaxed or lifted entirely, and we're able to have lots more BLUF events once more. Keep an eye on the calendar for details … 18 Mar 2022

Art and photography in the BLUF store

For some years now, we've supported 'HD Photos' on BLUF, by which I mean photos that are of a fairly high resolution, and which we are able to display full screen, even allowing users to zoom in to see detail. We added this because I believe that for a site … 10 Feb 2022

Welcome to 2022

I'd like to wish all our members a happy new year for 2022 - and let's hope that we manage to achieve something a little closer to normality this year. Normally, around this time of year, I'd be remarking on the number of events we've had in the past year … 01 Jan 2022

A small change to the language in our dresscode

Following feedback from a couple of people, a small change has been made to the description of the BLUF dresscode, though the code itself remains the same. For many years, we have listed things that are explicitly not included the dresscode, and for a number of years, part of that … 06 Aug 2021

Staying safe online

We've probably all seen them. The Facebook post about a weird looking website from a friend, in which we and dozens of other people are tagged. Or curious messages saying things like "Is this you in the video?" They're all often preludes to getting your social media accounts attacked … 24 May 2021

Classic Meets Fetish Berlin 2021 – Musicians Wanted

Are you a professional musician? Would you like to perform in your fetish gear to a large audience whilst also supporting other gay men in the process? Then we’d like to hear from you! CLASSIC MEETS FETISH is a classical music fetish event that takes place every year at Folsom … 03 Apr 2021

It's HIV Test Week in the UK

The week beginning 1st February 2020 is National HIV Testing Week in the UK, and many organisations will be promoting HIV testing. BLUF is proud to be one of them, through our partnership with the charity Saving Lives. Through this partnership, people in the UK can order a free home … 01 Feb 2021

A creative start to 2021

After the year we've just had, how about something a little more creative? I thought I'd flag up two creative contests for people, both with deadlines at the end of January 2021. First, the regular MOREPIXX? fetish photo competion takes a slightly different format this year, because there won't be … 03 Jan 2021

BLUF merchandise: a note on Brexit

At the end of 2020, the United Kingdom - where BLUF Ltd is based - will no longer benefit from the transitional arrangements following its exit from the European Union. This blog is an attempt to explain what we believe will happen with regard to the various BLUF merchandise that … 15 Dec 2020

Diversity and representation in BLUF

BLUF turns 23 this week. We’re doing so in a year that has been unlike any other, for a number of reasons. The pandemic is one, obviously, but besides that and the US election, one of the things that 2020 will surely be remembered for is protests about racial justice … 16 Nov 2020

Community cards - a new service from BLUF

Although most of the things we provide on the BLUF website are for members only, I've long been of the belief that we should also use our resources to provide things that benefit everyone, whether they're a member or not. That's why the BLUF events calendar has been publicly accessible … 18 Oct 2020

Black & White: an update on BLUF cards

Since 2013, the BLUF Card has been our reward for members who donate to the club. In return for donating, members can either download a card to print at home, or display it on-screen in our app. A range of vendors, to whom we are extremely grateful, offer discounts to … 26 Sep 2020

Introducing the Greek Leather Community

From the UK to Italy, from Belgium to Spain, from Finland to France and beyond, several leather groups, communities and networks have already been established, many of them with a long history, and the launch of a similar group for leathermen from Greece and Cyprus has been long overdue. The … 03 Sep 2020

The boys in the backroom

Thirty years ago, on the 27th June 1990, I sent the Welcome message to uk-motss, which was (probably) the UK's first internet email list specifically for LGBT people. It was also the first online community I created, and perhaps the one of which I'm still most proud - there are … 27 Jun 2020

Thoughts on privacy and online meetings

Lots of us are taking part in online meetings at the moment. They're a great way of keeping in touch with other members of the community around the world, when it's not possible to meet in person. We thought it would be helpful to post a reminder about privacy, however … 24 May 2020

Virtual Meetings on BLUF

Some basic support for virtual meetings has been added to BLUF, since it looks like this will be the main way for many of us to get together, at least in the short term. There are various levels of support for virtual meetings on BLUF. Firstly, virtual meetings now have … 10 May 2020

Happy Birthday Tom

On 8th May, 1920, Touko Laaksonen was born. In many countries, homosexuality was frowned upon. In his native Finland, as in so many others places, gay men faced violence and intimidation from the police, often having to live double lives. One hundred years later, the world is a very different … 08 May 2020

BLUF Backstage: How we handle photos (2020)

In this backstage blog, I'm going to explain more about our current process for photo approvals. Photos, and whether or not they're accepted, is probably that thing that people query most once they're a BLUF member, and I'll admit that it is something that, from time to time, causes problems … 20 Apr 2020

BLUF in the time of Corona

Dear member, I wanted to write to you to keep you up to date with what's happening at BLUF during the current pandemic. Around the world, many of us are being urged - or even required - to stay at home and not go out unless for essential reasons. For … 20 Mar 2020

BLUF event cancellations

••Update: 15th April 2020** In light of the drastic action being taken in many countries around the world fight the corona virus pandemic, especially in Europe, I have decided that all our official events between now and the end of May will be cancelled. BLUF events are organised by volunteers … 15 Mar 2020

COVID19 - Event updates

Following my post about BLUF events and coronavirus/COVID19 I have been keeping an eye on information about other clubs and events, and it occurred to me that it may be useful to gather in one place. While our calendar is normally focussed on leather events, for this blog, we will … 12 Mar 2020

BLUF events and coronavirus/COVID-19

This blog post is based on information circulated today (10th March) to BLUF event organisers, all of whom work on a voluntary basis Obviously, different governments around the world are responding in their own ways to the new coronavirus. I thought I'd best update everyone with what I think is … 10 Mar 2020

BLUF and Saving Lives UK

We're delighted to parter with the charity Saving Lives UK, to help promote postal HIV testing in the UK. Saving Lives, through their website Take A Test UK, makes home testing kits available, including straightforward HIV testing and full STI checkups. The tests use a simple dried blood spot, which … 28 Feb 2020

BLUF's 2020 Vision

We've been making plans. BLUF will turn 25 this decade, and I'm sure all members would love to see it carry on for as long as possible. And that means that it needs to generate enough money to cover its costs in the long term. I hope that 2020 will … 19 Jan 2020

A look back at the 2010s

I took over running BLUF in the summer of 2009, with the BLUF3 site launching in December of that year. Here's a look at some of the club's achievements since then 2010 We launched a dedicated BLUF mobile site The current logo was chosen, after an open competition Many tweaks … 01 Jan 2020

London Fetish Men

By Buster, Mr Leather UK 2019 Given that I regularly hear the old complaint "London gets all the good stuff, why doesn’t anyone run events where I live?" (The answer to which, of course, is "start one yourself") I’d almost started to believe that London was some kind of … 01 Dec 2019

BLUF Backstage: Deadlines for the event calendar

At BLUF we're always happy to list relevant community events in our calendar, and to promote them on our various social media channels, as we believe it's a great way to use our name to help promote some of the wonderful events organised by other people. In another blog post … 29 Jul 2019

More London Pride photos

These photos were taken by Nigel, aka SubDirectory (3) before the march, as members of BLUF and London Leathermen gathered at One Marylebone. … 08 Jul 2019

BLUF & LLM in the London Pride Parade 2019

These photos, showing the BLUF & London Leathermen group in the London Pride Parade 2019 were taken by member Longshot (2710) … 07 Jul 2019

Ten years and counting

Today, 16th June, marks ten years since BLUF's founder Leon entrusted me with the running of the organisation. And what a decade it's been - we've had not just one, but two completely new web sites, and we've launched apps for iPhone and Android. BLUF isn't just about the technology … 16 Jun 2019

Funding the future

Last year, in response to some legal issues, we ran a number of fundraisers, and I’m tremendously thankful to all who supported them and helped ensure that we could keep the club running. Now that is behind us, I’d like to talk openly about the costs involved in keeping the … 05 Apr 2019

What is U2F

This one's going to get a bit technical - but I believe it's important that we all protect our online accounts, not just for ourselves, but because of the information about other people that could be exposed if someone else gets into our own account. On sites like BLUF or … 20 Jan 2019

A Fireside Chat with BLUF's Director

As part of the Leather History series of Fireside Chats, Doug O'Keefe visited London in late 2018, and interviewed a number of people from the local leather scene, including BLUF's Directory, Nigel Whitfield. … 13 Dec 2018

Masculidade calendars

It's the time of year when many of us think about buying a calendar, and there are plenty out there that might appeal to the fetish community, including Australian Firemen with kittens. We'd also like to highlight the Masculidade calendars from Brazil. These are produced by a pair of photographers … 25 Nov 2018


The annual MOREPIXX? competition is back. Although this is first and foremost a prize competition for the best gay fetish photographs of the year, it is also a unique opportunity to exchange ideas, learn tricks, as well as to offer inspiration and encouragement to photographers, whether professional or amateur. More … 02 Nov 2018

What makes a man?

"What makes a man?" asked the late Charles Aznavour in his 1972 song. If you're not familiar with his work, you might perhaps think he's "just a French crooner," but to sing about a gay transvestite back then was certainly challenging taboos, and at a time when the … 02 Nov 2018

BLUF in Berlin: an amicable agreement has been reached.

We are delighted to announce that an agreement has been reached regarding the “BLUF Berlin” brand. Stig Berntsen (LthrMannBln 1261), our former member of many years standing, has transferred his brand to BLUF Ltd as a peacemaking gesture and to protect the scene. This means that BLUF Ltd will … 29 Aug 2018

BLUF in Berlin - update 2

Last week, we reported that the holder of the BLUF Berlin trademark had applied for an injunction to prevent one of our volunteers in Berlin from organising events using the BLUF name. Rather than immediately grant the injunction, the court gave each side a week to respond to the submissions … 02 Aug 2018

BLUF in Berlin - an update

In April, we issued a statement regarding a dispute about the use of the name BLUF Berlin. We are now in a position to give an update. On 22nd June Olaf Hartmannsgruber, our volunteer organiser in Berlin, received a legal letter requesting that he cease organising events in Berlin using … 27 Jul 2018

No more sick filth!

Just in time for Pride, over twenty years of hard work by BLUF member Tormentor (formerly #641) have paid off, with the World Health Organisation revising its classification of diseases, removing fetishism and BDSM. "This is good news for leather and rubber pride and can make it easier for young … 20 Jun 2018

BLUF in Berlin - an official statement

BLUF events around the world have been organised by volunteers ever since the club was founded in 1997. In Berlin many different members have organised events over the years - since at least 2003 - including social meet-ups, dinners, and gatherings during large events such as Folsom Europe and BLF's … 04 Apr 2018

About privacy and BLUF

Privacy and the use of data is very much in the news at the moment, following stories about Facebook and Cambridge Analytica, so I thought I'd take a moment to explain a little more about our privacy policy, and the principles that guide what we do at BLUF. You can … 25 Mar 2018

Real Clear Fetish

BLUF has always stood in my heart and leather has always been my main fetish, but this has become a thing I have to step away from for some time now. Which has been a hard choice but a necessary one. But a month ago I started a group on … 19 Mar 2018

Welcome to BLUF's new Calendar Editor

The BLUF Calendar is one of the most important parts of the website, helping members and non-members alike to find events near them, and helping other groups to publicise the events that they organise. Keeping it up to date is a big job - as well as events to add … 27 Feb 2018

The #GEAR365 resolution to make a gear revolution

#Gear365 is an initiative to help men worldwide get their gear out of their closets, get it on to their bodies and out into the streets in everyday life. This is done by resolving to wear some form of gear every single day for one year. At first, that … 16 Jan 2018

An End to Silence: SurvivorsUK

Who are SurvivorsUK? SurvivorsUK helps men who’ve been raped, sexually abused or assaulted. Every year in the UK, around 12,000 men are raped and 76,000 sexually abused or assaulted. It isn’t easy for men to talk about what’s happened to them: only 4% will speak about it. Of … 09 Jan 2018

Launch of LFN at BLUF New years Drink - Start LFN bij BLUF Nieuwjaarborrel 7-1-2018

Launching LFN at BLUF New Year Drink - Start LFN bij BLUF Nieuwjaarborrel Sunday January 7 17:00 at The Web - Zondag 7 januari in de Web om 17:00 uur Dear leatherguys, LFN is a new overall leather organisation which will be launched at the BLUF Amsterdam New Year Drink … 29 Dec 2017

Merry Christmas!

BLUF Amsterdam wenst alle leden fijne kerstdagen! BLUF Amsterdam wishes you a Merry Christmas! … 24 Dec 2017

Help wanted

In the eight and a half years since I took over running BLUF, the size of the club has grown, and with it the scope of what we're doing. Our calendar, for example, now lists events from many other organisations around the world, rather than just BLUF events, with a … 01 Dec 2017

Support Rainbow Railroad with the new Wilderdrop EP

Earlier this year, we heard awful news from Chechnya where a hardline government was cracking down on gay men. Some were rounded up and tortured; there have been reports of others being killed, and of men detained for weeks in concentration camps. Many of us take it for granted that … 30 Nov 2017

On sex, leather and visibility

In a piece recently published on GayStarNews, I make the argument for allowing people in fetish gear to be in Pride parades. I think it's an important one - and increasingly we're seeing people from within the gay community saying "it shouldn't be allowed', "it gives us a bad name" … 16 Aug 2017

London Pride Photos, 2017 - gallery 4

The photos in this gallery were taken by Nigel, aka SubDirectory (3) during the London Pride Parade 2017. Principally of BLUF and London Leathermen, it also includes a few other general shots of Pride. Click the photo to launch the gallery, and click the link below a photo to view it on Flickr … 14 Jul 2017

Tom of Finland - UK screenings

The Tom of Finland biopic had its London premiere a few weeks ago. For many people, of course, the word "biopic" can conjure up the phrase "dull but worthy," however in this case, nothing could be further from the truth. The film's witty, engaging, and at times heart-breaking too … 12 Jul 2017

London Pride Photos, 2017 - gallery 2

Thanks to Longshot (2710) for this collection of photos of the BLUF/LLM group in the London Pride Parade … 10 Jul 2017

London Pride Photos, 2017 - gallery 3

The photos in the gallery on this page were taken by a variety of people during the 2017 London Pride Parade, and show the BLUF / London Leathermen group. To view full details of each photo on Flickr, click the link below each picture. … 10 Jul 2017

B Proud - and help LGBT people in danger

Pride season is upon us, and in many cities around the world, BLUF members and other leather people will be marching, showing that we're not afraid to live our lives the way we want. In some countries, that's not the case - and in particular, events in Chechnya have been … 06 Jun 2017

Looking East

It's very easy, in western Europe and the US, to become complacent about the freedoms that we have as gay men, and as leathermen. As I've written before, in some countries - and often those only a short distance away - things are much less secure. Our concerns, whether they … 12 Apr 2017

BLUF Backstage: On the passing of members

One of the inevitable aspects of running a club, or a site like BLUF, is that sooner or later one or more of your members will pass away. Over the years I've been running the club, we've had this happen numerous times, and we now have a fairly structured way … 17 Mar 2017

The battle for Backstreet

Last night, at a meeting of the Tower Hamlets Strategic Development Committee, the future of London's only leather bar was secured - for the time being at least. The proposal Backstreet is the only part of a large building that's still in use. It occupies the back of a larger … 17 Feb 2017

Tom of Finland emoji

Emoji - the smiling faces and other icons that pepper so much online speech - are constantly evolving. The nation of Finland has already contributed some - such as a sauna - that will appear on many devices later this year. Not content with that, the home of Tom of … 06 Feb 2017

Changes in BLUF Amsterdam board - Nieuw bestuur BLUF Amsterdam

BLUF Amsterdam wants to thank Charles, Ard and Dave for all the energy, time and effort they put in leading BLUF Amsterdam to what it is now. More than 10 years you guys led BLUF Amsterdam and organised parties & meetings for leatherguys from the Netherlands and visitors from abroad … 01 Jan 2017

A new look for BLUF

Welcome to the new look BLUF website. We've completely rebuilt the site from the ground up, to make it more suitable for the modern world, and we've also make a lot of the information much easier to find, in new clearer sections devoted to leather bars, clubs and groups, photographers … 29 Dec 2016

MOREPIXX? A new fetish photo competition

Calling all gay fetish photographers A brand new worldwide photo competition is about to get off the ground in December 2016 and we’d like to invite you to be a part of it. Join in and submit your best gay fetish photos. If your photographs are successful in the competition … 10 Dec 2016

BLUF Montreal Pride photos

The Montreal chapter’s second event was participation in Montreal’s Sunday August 14th, 2016 Pride Parade that drew 300,000 spectators. The BLUF Montreal contingent won over the crowds and was warmly embraced by the cheering onlookers all along the route. … 23 Aug 2016

BLUF Montreal launch photos

BLUF (Breeches and Leather Uniform Fanclub) returns to its 1997 birthplace, Montréal. Founder, Dutch Leon Jacobs desire was to create a virtual meeting place to alleviate isolation, foster communication, and promote sharing for those in the breeches and leather uniform fetish community. is the result his desire and … 23 Aug 2016

BLUF Montreal launch video

Launch video for BLUF Montreal / Video pour la lancement de BLUF Montréal … 03 Aug 2016

BLUF posters, 2014

Continuing our collections of BLUF posters, this gallery includes those featuring the BLUF logo for events held in 2014. … 30 Jul 2016

BLUF posters, 2013

This gallery showcases posters with the BLUF logo for events in 2013. … 30 Jul 2016

BLUF posters, 2015

Since its introduction in 2011, BLUF's logo has appeared on many posters, both for our own events and for events that we're supporting in some way. This gallery includes almost sixty such posters, from 2015, in no particular order. … 29 Jul 2016

More London Pride Photos

Longshot (2710) has kindly submitted more photos of the BLUF / London Leathermen group from this year's Pride Parade. Click on a photo to view it on Flickr. … 29 Jun 2016

BLUF and London Leathermen at London Pride

Once again this year, BLUF took part in the London Pride Parade, and we formed a joint group with London Leathermen (formerly MSC London). With around 80 people taking part, we think this is the biggest ever leather turnout for the parade. Thanks very much to Paul Turner of LLM … 27 Jun 2016

BLUF Backstage: Introducing HD Photos

Over the past few weeks, some of you may have noticed our new HD Photos feature rolling out on the site. It represents a major update to the way we handle photos on BLUF, and it's now almost complete, so here's a full explanation of what it is, and what … 17 Feb 2016

BLUF LTD is born

Since it was created in 1997, BLUF has existed in a relatively informal way, organised first by Leon and now by myself. Over recent years, the club has grown in size and scope, with a better website and apps, more active local groups, and more events around the world. We … 26 Jan 2016

Calling occupants

"In your mind, you have capacities you know, to telepath messages through the vast unknown." Of course, these day rather than telepathy, we tend to use Twitter and other internet services to reach out, and in 2016 BLUF is reaching out even more than before, with our first official … 31 Dec 2015

Back to the Backstreet, renewing a pledge

You don't know what you've got till it's gone, sang Joni Mitchell and sadly that's all too often been the case with leather bars, which is one of the reasons we started the BLUF 12x12 pledge back at the beginning of 2012. It's not just leather bars, of course - … 20 Dec 2015

BLUF, PrEP and World AIDS Day 2015

For this year's World AIDS Day, BLUF is adding some features to our website that will help members learn about PrEP - Pre Exposure Prophylaxis. It's a drug regime that, taken by HIV negative people, can help to ensure that they stay that way. It's one of the biggest recent … 23 Nov 2015

A profile of politeness

In common with many other sites, BLUF provides profiles for members to write a bit about themselves, alongside their photos. And, just like on other sites, sometimes you see things that make you think "What's going on here?" Often, people use words and phrases without really thinking too much … 30 Oct 2015

Interview with the webmaster

Online magazine Sadosam has just published an interview with the BLUF webmaster: In English Auf Deutsch … 08 Jul 2015

BLUF in the London Pride Parade

On Saturday 27th June, London had its biggest ever Pride parade, and as in recent years, we had an official BLUF walking group. It was our biggest turnout for the march so far, with thirty people making up our group, please the BLUF and leather flags. We enjoyed a great … 30 Jun 2015

Photos from London Pride 2015

View image | The images in the photo gallery below are public photos from Flickr that show the BLUF group on the London Pride Parade. If you find more photos of us, please send an email to pride @ Click on a photo to view it … 29 Jun 2015

BLUF Backstage: The BLUF events calendar, and how to get listed

A few years ago, the BLUF calendar was something that was only available to members, and was principally a listing of BLUF events and very few other things. Over recent years it's grown, and now contains over 400 events, of which BLUF organises, supports or sponsors around around two thirds … 22 Jun 2015

BLUF Backstage: Message blocking and harassment

Unlike many other sites, BLUF doesn't have a button on profiles that you can use to block other members from sending you messages. It's something that, from time to time, people ask about, and so in this Backstage blog, I thought I'd set out why we don't have one, and … 15 May 2015

BLUF passwords and security update

As part of our commitment to keeping BLUF secure, we have today made some important changes to the way passwords are handled on the BLUF web site. We're posting this publicly for two reasons - first, so that people who have forgotten their password can understand the new system and … 23 Feb 2015

Building a community: Hard work pays off in Dublin

In January of this year, I was invited by the organisers of the GEARED Ireland night to present one of the prizes at their 'Three Kings" title holder event, which I was delighted to attend. I was one of the judges at the event last year, when Brett was chosen … 03 Feb 2015

This year, gear up and make a difference

At the start of 2012, I launched the BLUF 12x12 pledge. It's a simple idea - at BLUF, we just want people to try and make the effort to get out and support their local leather bars, at least once a month. It's important - and especially important I … 03 Jan 2015

World AIDS Day: Don't exclude, embrace

As World AIDS Day comes around once again, I'd like to reflect on the way that we talk about those in our community who are living with HIV/AIDS. And, in some ways, that also reflects on the ways we talk about people in general, especially when it comes to online … 29 Nov 2014

On Facebook, fetish and names

Like it or not, Facebook is the site that many, many people turn to for a lot of their online socialising. It's captured the market to a huge degree - you even see adverts where, instead of a web site, companies urge you to find them on Facebook. And, as … 21 Nov 2014

BLUF Backstage: All about membership applications

BLUF membership to some is something to be coveted, and to aspire to. To others, it's a self selecting clique, or a bunch of guys who think they're better than everyone else. Or something that's virtually impossible to join. So, in this BLUF Backstage blog, I'm going to explain a … 12 Nov 2014

BLUF Backstage: How we handle inactive profiles

This is the first in a series of BLUF Backstage articles that explains how we deal with various aspects of running the club. Today, I'm explaining how we handle inactive profiles; in theory, of course, we could just leave them all there. But, we don't need to impress advertisers with … 06 Oct 2014

Photo highlights from London Pride 2014

The photos below are the highlights from over 100 that I shot on the London Pride march in 2014, and show members of BLUF and MSC London in our joint walking group. Click on a photo to view it on Flickr, where you'll also find all the other photos I … 13 Aug 2014

Bestandsaufnahme und Zukunftspläne

Der 16. Juni 2009 war für mich ein wichtiges Datum. Es war der Tag, an dem Leon, der Gründer von BLUF, mich gebeten hatte, BLUF zu übernehmen, damit er nach zwölf Jahren zurücktreten konnte. Ich hoffe, es ist nicht zu unbescheiden zu sagen, dass ich ziemlich stolz auf das bin … 10 Jul 2014

BLUF in Chicago Pride 2014

BLUFChicago marched in Chicago's 45th annual Pride Parade. More than one million spectators attended. BLUFChicago marchó en 45o desfile anual del orgullo de Chicago. Más de un millón de espectadores asistieron. BLUFChicago marchait en 45e annuel défilé de la fierté de Chicago. Plus d'un million de spectateurs ont assisté. BLUFChicago … 04 Jul 2014

London Pride March photos - set 2

More photos from the London Pride Parade, taken by leather bln (1879) … 02 Jul 2014

London Pride March photos - set 1

Thanks to Longshot (2710) for this set of photos showing the BLUF and MSC group in the London Pride Parade. … 01 Jul 2014

Flickr photos from London Pride

This Flickr gallery shows photos from the BLUF and MSC marching group in the London Pride parade; click on a photo to view it on Flickr. … 01 Jul 2014

More Flickr photos from London Pride

This Flickr gallery shows photos from the BLUF and MSC marching group in the London Pride parade; click on a photo to view it on Flickr. … 01 Jul 2014

Taking stock, making plans

June 16th 2009 was a fairly significant date for me. It was the day on which Leon, BLUF's founder, asked me to take over running the club so that he could step back after twelve years. I hope it's not too immodest to say that I'm quite proud of what's … 16 Jun 2014

Harnessing technology

Bijou World, a vendor of vintage gay porn, wrote an interesting blog about the recent IML, in which they lamented the lack of people in full leather, compared to the number in, say, harnesses. It's an interesting read, and while I can't say whether or not it's indicative of the … 04 Jun 2014

London Leather Social

Although not a BLUF event, the London Leather Social is well attended by BLUF guys, along with a good selection of men into all the different sorts of leather. It's a friendly event which takes place in the upstairs bar at Comptons on the first Sunday of every month - … 06 May 2014

BLUF's first ever advert

If you're heading to CLAW this year, check out the Yearbook, for two firsts from BLUF. The first of those is the uniform party, which is an official BLUF event for the first time at CLAW. The second is our very first advert, which you can also see below. BLUF … 02 Apr 2014

Get the BLUF Calendar

The BLUF Calendar has grown over recent years, and as well as containing details of BLUF's own events - now 60-70 a year, around the world - it has information about around 150 others, and that number seems to be growing. We've already made our calendar feed available publicly at … 21 Mar 2014

The UK's internet censorship

With the UK's internet censorship scheme rolling out, enforcing a 'nanny knows best' view of what we should be allowed to see online, and at the same time blocking access to important sites, like LGBT health information, or support for abuse survivors, I've collected together some of the writing that … 20 Dec 2013

World AIDS Day 2013

It's the 25th World AIDS Day today. From all at BLUF, whether you're remembering those we've lost, caring for someone with HIV, living with it yourself, or being grateful for information that's kept you safe, our very best wishes. Since the first World AIDS Day, we've come a long way … 01 Dec 2013

BLUF on Social Media

You'll find BLUF members and volunteers active on social media platforms, including Twitter and Facebook. Many members use the word BLUF and sometimes their BLUF membership number as part of their profile names online. So, it's not always obvious whether something you read online is a statement from someone who's … 23 Oct 2013

Community Matters

Last weekend in Bristol, we had another great BLUF party. The same weekend there were also BLUF events in Chicago and San Francisco, and the weekend before saw events in London, LA, and Chicago (again! It must be something in the water). This coming weekend, BLUF events are being held … 22 Oct 2013

BLUF at Manchester Pride

The photos in the gallery below are from BLUF Northwest during Manchester Pride 2013. Click a photo to view on Flickr. … 10 Sep 2013

BLUF's new membership card

The BLUF site now includes a new option, "BLUF Card", for members who are logged in to their accounts. This allows you to download a BLUF membership card, in PDF format. We've done this so that, for the first time, BLUF members have a way to prove that they are … 01 Aug 2013

More Pride Parade Photos

These photos were taken during the Pride Parade by Steve, aka Licence2Thrill (2663) Click an image to view it on Flickr … 13 Jul 2013

BLUF photos from London Pride 2013

2013 marked the second year that BLUF was registered as an official participant on the London Pride Parade. We were joined in our walking group by members of MSC London as well, and had a total of around thirty people present on the day. The photos here were taken by … 09 Jul 2013

Photos from London Pride

Around 30 people took part in the Pride March for BLUF and MSC London. The photos on this page were submitted to us by FllLthr (1386) … 05 Jul 2013

Keep Your Timber Limber (Works on Paper)

Keep Your Timber Limber (Works on Paper) is at London's Institute of Contempary Arts, from 19th Jun to 8th September 2013. Keep Your Timber Limber (Works on Paper) explores how artists since the 1940s to the present day have used drawing to address ideas critical and current to their time … 31 May 2013

BLUF in the London Pride Parade

BLUF is once again taking place in the London Pride parade, which this year is on Saturday 29th of June 2013. We'll be marching towards the front of the parade, hopefully with a fair few people in full leather gear. If you're into leather, and you'd like to join us … 29 May 2013

BLUF logo posters, 2012

BLUF's current logo was introduced at the start of 2011, and has slowly been being adopted by the organisers of offical BLUF events since then. This gallery features the sixteen posters for BLUF events during 2012 that featured the logo. … 23 Jan 2013

BLUF wins an X Award

On Sunday 20th January, during Belgium's Leather Pride, BLUF won the X Award for "Fetish Organisation 2013" This is the first time that the X Awards have been held, and we were nominated in our category against stiff competition from LC Roma, Berlin Leder & Fetish, and ECMC, with the … 22 Jan 2013

BLUF nominated in the X-Awards

I'm both flattered and delighted to announce the BLUF has been nominated in the X-Awards, a new event at Belgian Leatherpride to recognise organisations that have made a valuable contribution to the fetish scene. It's a testament to the work of all our volunteers around the world, and the many … 02 Jan 2013

Staying safe in 2013

“Safe” is a word that’s used an awful lot by the gay community, but overwhelmingly in one particular context, that of preventing or reducing the risk of transmitting HIV or other STIs. That’s a very important thing to do, as I wrote on World AIDS Day. But I also think … 30 Dec 2012

The 12x12 pledge - how did you do?

Back at the start of the year, I launched the BLUF 12x12 pledge, to try and encourage people to get out to their leather bars, for more than just the special party nights. We had a great response, especially at the start of the year, but I've also been delighted … 29 Dec 2012

A question of numbers

“Are you clean?” “Disease free and expect the same!” All phrases that have become depressingly familiar to many on the gay scene, and especially in the world of online hook-ups. And phrases that it’s worth taking a good hard look at, on World AIDS Day. The numbers that … 01 Dec 2012

Folsom Europe photos

A small selection of black and white photos from the Folsom Europe streetfair, taken by the BLUF webmaster … 13 Sep 2012

Folsom Europe photos (2)

More photos from Folsom Europe 2012, taken by Nigel, aka SubDirectory (3) on Saturday 8th September. These were shot on colour slide film, then scanned. … 13 Sep 2012

It's time for UK's CPS to stop its war on sex

In the UK, a fairly important trial has just concluded; discussed on twitter using the #PornTrial hashtag, it centred around a man named Simon Walsh, who was prosecuted for ‘Extreme Pornography,’ after a search of his email account found images that the police and Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) believed … 08 Aug 2012

More photos from London's World Pride March

Here are some more photos from the BLUF group marching in London's World Pride Parade, July 7th 2012. These photos have been kindly contributed from a number of sources. The first four were kindly sent to us by Polari Magazine, followed by three from Recon user 'Evilgrin' The next six … 01 Aug 2012

Rose Zaterdag 2012

These pics are from Roze Zaterdag (Pink Saturday) on July 7th. It's like the Dutch version of national Pride. Every year since 1978 another town is gay capital ('roze stad') of the Netherlands for the whole year ( and unfortunately only in Dutch). … 01 Aug 2012

BLUF in the World Pride March - photos

For World Pride 2012 in London, and since BLUF will be fifteen this year, we arranged a marching group in the parade. These photos, taken by Nigel, aka SubDirectory (3), show the group - which numbered around 25 by the time we finished - plus some of the other sights from the march … 11 Jul 2012

BLUF in the World Pride March - public photos

This collection of photos is from various users on Flickr who took photos of BLUF members as we passed by in the parade on 7th July. In spite of the weather and the change to the start time, we had around 25 people marching with us by the end of … 09 Jul 2012

Marching in gear

Pride is upon as and, for the first time, BLUF is registered as a group to march in the parade in London. Amongst all the outpourings of emotion and anger that have been caused by the poor organisation and near collapse of the event, there are also some familiar themes … 06 Jul 2012

BLUF in the World Pride march, 2012

BLUF is a registered group in the World Pride march on 7th July 2012, and we welcome those who want to come and join us with the BLUF and leather flags, whether you're in gear or not. The start time for the march has been rescheduled, and it now moves … 03 Jul 2012

A brief guide to online dating

There are lots of online dating sites these days, both for fetish and non-fetish people, and if you're not used to them, it can be tricky getting to grips with the etiquette - after all, you don't want to upset people when you're chatting online, do you? So, here are … 11 Jun 2012


This year sees two significant milestones for BLUF. First, BLUF was founded in 1997 by Leon, and so this year we'll be celebrating our fifteenth birthday - making us one of the longest running internet-based clubs for leather guys around the world. Our second milestone was passed on 23rd April … 23 Apr 2012

An old man's game?

There’s little doubt that the fetish scene has changed a lot in the last decade or so. As people have flocked to the web as a place to meet, so tastes and attitudes have changed. Where once those into leather would find like minded souls in a bar, and very … 11 Apr 2012

Easter 2012 in Bristol

As an alternative to Berlin for Easter, new kid on the block Bristol (England) sees a weekend of Easter events for BLUF and leathermen alike. BLUF's local group in Bristol will be out in force to welcome newcomers and regulars alike. Two new venues open this Easter weekend. On Good … 03 Apr 2012

A leather rising

It’s all too easy to forget, while we lament the declining turnout in our leather bars, that things are very different for people in some parts of the world, and indeed to take what we have in our own countries for granted. In the UK, we often forget that, while … 13 Mar 2012

BLUF events calendar now available to everyone

I wrote in December about our 12x12 Pledge, to encourage people to go out and visit their leather bars more, and I'm pleased that that's been taken up by many people, including some venues who've been using the logo we created on their publicity. We've now also made a small … 27 Feb 2012

Keep the leather scene alive - sign up to our 12x12 pledge

One of the most important things that BLUF does every year is to organise meetings around the world; these are arranged by volunteers, and take place in the UK, Germany, Belgium, The Netherlands, Italy, the United States, and many other countries. At many of these, attendance is excellent – at … 26 Dec 2011

The importance of asking questions

Leather and BDSM don’t have to go together, but for many people – including of course a substantial proportion BLUF members – they’re natural bedfellows. But for those who are new to one or the other, it can sometimes be a bewildering arena in which to take your first steps … 18 Nov 2011

A gallery of leather event posters

This collection of posters and flyers from events that we've advertised on the BLUF website is by no means complete - the bulk of the collection is from 2011, with a few from 2010. However, we do think it's worth keeping a record of these, so that people can look … 10 Nov 2011

Joining BLUF doesn’t have to break the bank

Often, when I’m out and about in bars, the subject of leather comes up. When it does, I don’t leap in and say “I’m the BLUF webmaster.” Instead, it’s interesting to listen to what people say, especially if matters do turn to BLUF. And when they do, very often … 09 Nov 2011

Welcome to the BLUF blog

I'm pleased to announce the new BLUF blog section of the site. Why does BLUF need a blog when we already have a magazine section on the site? Well, the main reason is that it allows us to share some of that material, if we want, with a wider public … 08 Nov 2011

Announcing BLUF Bristol

We're pleased to announce the new BLUF Bristol nights. BLUF will be members meeting for the launch of BLUF@Bristol on the 21st of October in the capital of England's West Country. The event will be held at GEAR, one of Bristol's regular monthly leather & fetish nights. Please note that … 21 Aug 2011

Where to buy your kink or LGBTQ friendly face mask

In an increasing number of places around the world, people are being asked or required to wear face masks when out in public, as part of the efforts to stop the spread of the coronavirus. A number of kink and LGBT-friendly vendors are making masks from a variety of fabrics …


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