The Problem with Gender Neutral Clothing...

Posted by Hanna Symis on

Belter of a first title for a unisex clothing store, no?

But here's the thing. I think this needs to be talked about - more and more often, we're reading/hearing about really extreme reactions to what is, to me, something so innocent. And while the reactions put me on edge and make me a bit purple in the face, I feel it's important to look at the other side, at what is making some folks go bat-shit mental the second they hear the words "gender-neutral clothing" in a sentence.

So, what is gender neutral clothing? In my mind, gender neutral clothing is clothing. The end! Last I checked, none of my clothes had a sex organ of any kind, making it unisex by default. And the pink and blue thing (still?)? Nah mate. It's a colour. You know this. Stop being daft.

Maybe much of the confusion comes from the phrase "gender neutral"? I admit to not really liking the phrase when it comes to cool kit for your kids, as it can seem to suggest that it is trying to remove gender and make all kids the same - or, in a more telling twist, make boys more "feminine". This certainly seems to be the worry when you have charisma vacuum and all-round chops Piers Morgan essentially shoving his fingers in his ears while yelling "lalalala, you will not a put my son in a dress, nossirr" as happened last year.

The truth could not be further away from this - the whole point of gender-neutral clothing (in the case of your favourite hand-made kids clothes emporium, anyway) is that it provides more choice, not less. You want a dress with a massive (non-pink, non eyelashed) T-Rex on? You got it. You want some shorts with unicorn pockets and the periodic table? You betcha! And if your son wants a dress that's covered in planets then WHY THE HECK NOT? They're clothes. And they do not make kids more or less of anything, they just make them them. And them is freaking awesome. 

We're not trying to bully all the boys into dresses, just as we're not trying to get all the girls to burn pink, it's just about choice. If a kid doesn't want to wear a frock, no amount of describing things as "gender-neutral" will make them. And here's a cheeky extra thought. If your kids don't fancy wearing everything but are raised to accept that some kids do, what's the worst that'll happen? Let me tell you. You'll be the parent of some really decent, tolerant and accepting kids. And that sounds pretty bloody good to me. 

 

 


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3 comments

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    Aleah on
  • Wish this started years ago…..would have loved to have had a skirt or dress when I was younger! :-D

    Seriously though, this is a good blog entry, and it’s something we really need to discuss. Seems too often, many stores ‘Gender neutral’ tends to mean “boys’ clothing in a limited colour selection.” Doesn’t seem that “neutral”, really.

    We need more choices!

    Also, those skirts and dresses that have pockets? DEFINITELY a good idea!

    Sebastian on
  • Yes!!!!! Great work on the first blog post Sewing Circus. 🤗

    Rachel on

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