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pink for girls, blue for boys

Babies, babies, babies are everywhere. There are so many people around me having babies lately. They’re little and cute and completely underestimated by the majority of the adult population. With the knowledge that the first five years of a child’s life are the most influential, it seems crucial that everything that surrounds these early learning experiences enhance their ability to understand the world. Sadly, however, one of the first impressions that young children see, whether they’re one week or one year old, is the enforcement of society’s stereotypes about our appearances.

Baby girls have frilly outfits with lace and flowers and boys have something more mechanical; airplanes, cars and boats in a light blue, green or maybe tan colour. And there is of course the middle ground, of gorgeous little animal outfits with ears and feet in yellow and green…supposed gender neutral colours. So, I’m not sure how they feel, but all this baby action is completely and adorably overwhelming.

As some of you might know, I run an online shop selling handmade accessories and baby items are my top seller. I make hats and headbands,  in pink for girls and blue for boys. Of course. Despite my inner most yearnings to stop them in their tracks and remind them of all the other beautiful colours in the world – purple, orange, green, yellow and more – it seems that only pink and blue is what my customers want, so it’s what I make.

Recently I’ve found out a little bit of information that backs my claim that pink shouldn’t be for girls and blue shouldn’t be for boys (although there is a growing popularity for blue for girls). That fact is that, traditionally, blue, a calm, soft colour was originally intended for girls and pink, a watered down red and bold colour, was for boys.  And somewhere along the line, the colours switched and this has been what people have flocked towards for as long as I can remember. Baby shower decorations are blue for baby boys, pink  for baby girls and a splash of white for both.

However this original, traditional guide to colours for children was originally intended to be adhered to by followers of conventionalism. Which in fact means that my current pursuit of trying to encourage parents and people of the world that pink isn’t for girls and blue isn’t for boys is actually pushing ideals of the past.

So it becomes clear that perhaps the current trend of blue for boys and pink for girls, is sticking it to past stereotypes, and saying that the soft, calm colour of blue can be very appropriate for boys and the strong, bold colour of pink is perfect for girls.

At least, that’s the way I’d like to think of it.

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3 thoughts on “pink for girls, blue for boys

  1. maybe they’re wrong, 208 is a pretty small sample size. but i like how, instead of just assuming that girls liking pink and boys liking blue reflects the “enforcement of society’s stereotypes about our appearances,” they actually try and find ways to prove or disprove the notion.

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