During a recent trip to Boot's, I glanced over and noticed the above offending item. It annoyed me and I thought I write a blog post to work through why I was upset.
Said pink item upset me because I really don't see why an item like reins needs to be gendered. It's an evil marketing idea which means you need to buy separate reins for boys and girls. Obviously as a thrift mistress, I find this idea insane. This led me to reflect on items Frieda has such as toys and clothes. Toy's wise Frieda's toys are gender neutral. Her toy box contains toys of all different colours shapes and sizes. Frieda has recently become interested in trains and dolls. She has a train set and I intend to buy her a doll in the future. In our house dolls and trains are promoted as children’s toys rather than toys for either boys or girls, as is quite common these days
The cup cake image for girls idea enrages me. Firstly cake is for boys and girls it's not only girls that eat cake. Secondly I hate the connotation around the idea that cupcakes are more suited to a girls dainty appetite. I figure this *ahhhh eat cup cakes* imagery is surely feeding into food and body issues girls are at risk of as they get older. So there we have have it, simple huh? And then I think about how clothes are viewed in our house. I think the Pinkstinks campaign articulates this point more eloquently than my good self.....go check it out.
Clothes wise I realise my standards are different. Frieda has parents who LOVE bright colours. Alan and I respect all colours and this attitude is reflected in our whole family's wardrobe. Frieda wears some pink items (a) because I am a thrift mistress and it's hard to avoid the colour in hand me down bundles, and (b) because we see beauty all colours and don't want to limit our colour consumption. Frieda doesn't wear too much pink because (a) it's not one of my favourites, and (b) because of the overly girly stereotypes it's associated with. Sometimes Frieda wears clothes that are contemporary and gender neutral ie dungarees, tee shirts leggings. Sometimes she wears more classic feminine clothes ie floral's, and beautiful dresses. And I lOVE the dresses, and don't intend to change my attitude here. I realise therefore that my ideas are skewed. I dress Frieda in clothes that society clearly deems as being only for girls but encourage her that all toys and activities are for boys and girls. Frieda is nearly getting to the age when she can choose her own clothes i'm interested to see what she chooses. I'm writing this post on a very hot day and Frieda is wearing a very practical, cool, cotton sun dress and i'm thinking isn't it a shame baby boys don't wear dresses any more. I leave you with this delightful image.