Monday, May 4, 2015

Thinking About Pink...

I picked up this blouse at the thrifts the other day:


I am about to do a big batch of over-dyeing of clothes and thought this shirt would come out well with its print and textures. You see, I am not a fan of white, pink or pastel and hardly ever wear them, at least as outerwear.

But for some reason I stayed my hand on this blouse. Maybe because we are into spring now? I don't know exactly.

Stylistically, I come out of a long background of rebellious dressing tied to underground music scenes. Hardcore punk of the 80s, and grunge in the 90s.  I was wearing 50s dresses with converse sneakers and combat boots in the primary-colored, neon-drenched 80s and serious goth, all black clothing with dead white makeup (including white mascara), at the beginning of the 90s. Then there was a period of serious guy dressing---men's military pants (the old school tailored kind) with tank tops, guy's bowling shirts or ratty band T shirts. I was aiming for rebellious and tough, and pink just didn't figure into that equation. Pink symbolized traditional girlyness, which symbolized weakness and bowing to the status quo. Pink was the color worn by high school cheerleaders, sorority girls and young mothers, people whom I had no connection with.

But here I was a few days ago with a pink, floral blouse wondering why I wanted to wear it. I ended up wearing it all day yesterday. And I was...somewhat uncomfortable. Part of me liked it, and part of me wants to throw it into the dye bath as soon as I can. It does look good with the olive green skirts I have too many of. Which part of me will win out? We shall see...

What is your relationship to pink?

13 comments:

  1. I LOVE pink but definitely not in clothing for me. I don't branch out far from black...

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I do love 50s pink decor items. But black is my mainstay in clothing, as well :)

      Delete
  2. I never wear it or have it in my home, but I do have a fondness for pink clothing with flowers on them, just like that one. Reminds me of Laura Ashley or something I suppose. I can see why you hesitated throwing it in the dye pot - it is very pretty. However, if you're uncomfortable wearing it then maybe it needs to be dyed. Or maybe made into a pillow. ;)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Huh, a pillow is a good idea. But I'll probably end up over-dyeing it. Should come out pretty good with the various prints and the textured swiss dots.

      Delete
  3. I have the exact opposite relationship to pink, but for the same reason -- its social association with femininity. I was forbidden from wearing it during my boyhood and when I tried wearing it as a teenager, people incorrectly criticized me as gay. I know many women who flee pink as if it is radioactive but, to me, it's magnetic.

    I appreciate your honestly in this post and hope you'll evolve in your relationship to a simple color. Really, all the fuss we make is over its symbolism, not its actual hue.

    ReplyDelete
  4. Interesting...for you, Ally, pink is, in a bit of a way, rebellious because you were forbidden to wear it for so long. It is fascinating how we attach so much symbolism to the various colors. White, for example. A symbol of purity in this culture (hence white wedding dresses), but in other cultures white is the color of mourning and is worn at funerals.

    ReplyDelete
  5. I was your style twin the the 1980s, I lived in 1950s tea dresses bought at jumble sales which I hacked off at the hem with nail scissors and wore with 12 hole Doc Martens.
    I loathed ink for years but with natural blonde hair it did look a bit clichéd. With my bad ass black hair I adore it.
    Why not wear the blouse with black leather pants or something equally unconventional? x

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Those were the days---40s, 50s and 60s dresses clogged the thrifts at insanely cheap prices!

      Yes, I think I'll try it with an all-black ensemble before I do it in :)

      Delete
  6. I also dressed similarly in the 80s etc (while walking down the street one day back then, someone yelled at me "Go back to your own country!" hahaaa!) but once I became older, I started to love pink. I really like that blouse - though I would probably over-dye it a deeper pink/red or something - pastels in general I'm still getting used to!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Ha ha ha!! That is hilarious! I got all kinds of things yelled at me as well. I wonder what country they thought you were from?
      Yes, I think I might dye it down to a "dirty" pink---it's just too bright for me :)

      Delete
    2. Oh I dirty pink would be great!

      Hehee, I don't know where they thought I was from! I had another situation similar - went into a downtown Cle drugstore to buy pop or something, I didn't say anything, and the guy at the register said "Now don't tell me - I'll guess where you're from...France? Spain?...okay tell me!" And I said "Cleveland!" :)

      Delete
  7. I have some conflicting feelings about pink myself, but it is interesting to note that it has only been a "girly" color since post-WWII. Before that, blue was more of the quintessential girls color and pink was worn by boys.

    http://www.todayifoundout.com/index.php/2014/10/pink-used-common-color-boys-blue-girls/

    ReplyDelete
  8. I rarely wear pink, sometimes something we pink in it but pink is rare. And if I'm wearing it's a saturated neon hot pink (which works with my cool undertone, pastels do not). I have a batch of thrifted clothes set aside to dye, too ;D

    ReplyDelete