clothing

Why Pink?

Monday, July 21, 2014


The lives of little girls are saturated with pink-- pink toys, pink clothes, toiletries, school supplies, candy.... so much pink that the cheery hue has spilled over into lady hood. 
While perusing the aisles of my favorite hardware store, I ran into a selection of pink hand tools, tool belts, gloves and hardhats, no doubt intended for grown women. I've seen pink firearms, pink boxing gloves, pink camouflage, pink fishing rods (okay, I have one of these, but for the record mine is primarily teal)-- pink anything that is traditionally considered masculine, likely to make us "dainty" ladies feel at home with these "manly" objects (because a black hammer is so intimidating!).


I look forward to the mimosa bloom each year, some of the most unique flowers!


Pink has never been my favorite color. Sometime after I started dressing myself, and had banished my Barbie dream house to the garage, I decided that the color pink was reserved for the frivolous girly girl and the empty-headed Barbie want-to-be-- strong opinions for a third grader. Eventually, all color would be banished from my wardrobe, save for red and purple (always paired with black), and would not return for the better half of a decade.




I still hesitate with pink (sometimes for fear it clashes with my hair) and refrain from buying most of those very pink products marketed for women, but Mrs. Bolton must have liked pink, as did many other vintage ladies, so a fair bit of pink has found its way into my wardrobe





 With all this pink comes the question of why? What is so special about this color that it has become synonymous with being a girl or being a woman?

While there is some evidence of a deep seated, and biological, preference for warmer hues in women (relating to ripe fruit and the health of children), most of the preference for pink comes down to marketing.






We are told girls like pink, dressed in pink as babies, immersed in pink as children and sold pink products as young consumers... and it's been this way for a while, long enough that pink has become part of the female identity.


July in the south means crape myrtle-- such beautiful blooms.


Chances are, however, if you were born and raised before the second World War, you were excluded from this childhood "pinkwashing," in fact during the teens and twenties of the last century, pink was encouraged for boys and blue for girls. And before that, both young boys and girls were dressed in white dresses!




The post-war consumer culture that brought about so many beloved fashions, such as the frock I'm wearing here, also spawned the idea of pink for girls and blue for boys, however it wasn't until the mid-late 80s that the colors defined the genders. 


Smithsonian.com has a fascinating article concerning pink-- read more here.


Lingering blooms on my neighbors' hydrangea.
I finally have a spot picked out to plant one of my own.





Shoes-- Miz Mooz

I've also purchased a tube of pink lipstick whose shade I actually find pleasing (a first for me)! While an eventual purchase of a pink Besame lippy is in the works, I played it safe with a tube of Milani's Hot Pink Rage (matte), which is what I'm wearing here.
I'm also wearing my hair in a center part, which I should remember to refrain from in the future!

And I cannot forget to mention my magnificent moon! This moon was part of our wedding and last month we hauled it from storage in New York to a shabby corner of the yard here in North Carolina.. I've still got lots of work to do on the garden I placed it in (my wildflower seeds are struggling terribly in this shady spot), and I can't wait to fill the space with some of my favorite shade-loving plants! 


It's taken three years, but my lily has finally bloomed!



So, Pink, love it? Hate it? What's your motivation for wearing it or avoiding it?
Tell me all about it.



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