Thursday, April 14, 2011

Handsome In...Any Color

I figured it was perfect timing for this post, especially hot on the heels of the whole "Toemageddon." In addition to allowing my son to have his nails painted, I've also been known to allow him to wear barrettes in his hair, pink clothes and even the occasional twirly skirt. *Insert shock and horror here.*

It's true...I've been known to complain about the lack of diversity in boy's clothing. I admit to sometimes leafing through catalogues, a bit envious of the color and options afforded to little girls while boys clothes don't seem to go beyond the typical jeans, sweatpants, plaids, blues & greens. While I can sometimes find a gem hidden between the racks in most big name clothing stores, it's usually more frustrating than fun.

In addition to my own desire to diversify EZ's wardrobe, I had embarked on some research for an article I wrote on gender stereotyping. I began a search for retailers that took the leap and offered clothes that just might eschew those carefully created gender boxes.

I didn't have to look too far at first. It just so happens that my own sister in law designs a children's clothing line that truly embodies the essence of being a kid without further promoting antiquated gender stereotypes.  Created with eco-friendly materials and a whole lot of love and imagination, Handfull offers a wide variety of choice, making it easy for parents of both boys and girls. There are no limits on colors or appliques, and very rarely are specific items marketed towards one particular gender.

You can be certain EZ will be rocking this shirt and I might even put in a request for a "mama size" one
Rather than being labeled by gender, the clothes are geared towards any kid with a love of color and creativity. The clothes themselves are simple, with appliques ranging from animals, nature, music, and more. There is literally something for every interest.

One of EZ's favorite sweatshirts is his Handfull banjo hoodie

Going one step further beyond simply offering an alternative choice, online store Handsome In Pink was created by two mothers, specifically in reaction to the limiting clothing choices found in mainstream retailers. Their mission statement is simple, yet seemingly profound in a time when little boys are being targeted for painting their toe nails.

 We believe that colors (such as pink and purple) and active imagery (such as firetrucks, tool belts, and electric guitars) belong to everyone and should be mingling, not dividing up along gender lines. 

Handsome In Pink certainly lives up to its ideals, offering a variety of cute onesies and shirts for  both kids and adults.

Being able to find a pink shirt with a truck on it might just be the answer for a parent who's son is super into trucks, but also loves the color pink. It's hard enough to find clothes for kids that aren't part of some overly-branded line or basically a walking advertisement for Disney and the like. To be able to find gems like these companies that sell tolerance and acceptance along with their clothes...well, that's the sort of style I dig.

Do you have a favorite retailer (both online or otherwise) that offers a choice beyond blue for boys/pink for girls?

1 comment:

Nikki said...

I have been thinking about this as well. My sister really struggles trying to find great clothes for her two sons that aren't cars, sports, or dinosaurs with scary faces. "What about fruit?" Wouldn't that make a great shirt? Why does everything have to be so aggressive for boys? I love the handfull clothing and am working on creating some fun printed shirts for my nephews. I'll let you know how they turn out.