I realize that the war is out on creating gender equality and preventing gender categorization, which is absolutely great! But looking around me, I still see a lot of gender stereotyping, especially when it comes to children, from children's clothing, toys and books.
Which is how Jammiespree started.
I was tired of seeing subliminal messages on my kids' clothes making my beautiful smart daughters think that they should only be interested in flowers and fairies, that only their younger brother should like learning about dinosaurs or dream to be an astronaut, that they should not like math or understand science.
I look around me and realize that we humans love to have our little mental boxes where we classify and label everything we see and then that's it - they stay in the same box unless something drastic happens to knock it out.
I know I am guilty of the same thing but maturity has taught me otherwise - we cannot label each other, it's just not that simple.
Unfortunately, that's exactly what we teach our children when we tell our sons to 'man up' or 'stop acting like a girl' or tell our daughters to 'stop being a tomboy' or 'be nice to everyone'. We are telling them, you belong in the boy box so you are supposed to play rough, like the colour blue and want a racing car for your birthday or you belong in the girl box where you're supposed to be clean, bright and sweet, love pink glitter and probably not be able to add up big numbers in your head.
As a kid of the late 70's and the 80's, I think back and remember that the shows I watched were not so overtly segregated into 'boy' cartoons and 'girl' cartoons. Now, boy cartoons are full of monster trucks that are loud and uncouth and girls cartoons are full of sexualized characters with their long lashes and pinched waists.
And it's the same thing for toys. Toys that I played with came in all the primary colours and that was it - no pink and purple for girls and blue and grey for boys.
Now, even my toddler's Megablocks come in different colour sets.
So it's no wonder that kids grow up thinking that they should be either one or the other. And if anyone happens to be different, then they are headed for disaster. Because not only will others keep reminding them of their inability to fit into those boxes, they will keep reminding themselves of it too. And thus comes depression, suicide and a whole lot of unhappiness.
But is that what the world needs? 7+ billion people all fit neatly into a handful of 'types' or do we need a whole spectrum without any specified types, no boundaries.... just being.
I know it's wishful thinking, but that is my hope for my kids and all the kids, grown-ups and everyone in between, around the world - they are they. And that's all.
My goal at Jammiespree is not to give but to take. Take away the labels, take away the boxes and in return, give choices.
I know that they are quite a bit of gender-neutral clothing out there. And I love that more and more people are demanding that. But one thing I noticed is that many of these clothing stores tend to avoid the pinks and blues.
With Jammiespree, we will be trying to cover the whole spectrum. We hope to have colours and prints geared towards all kids. But we can't do it alone. We need your help.
What would you like to see in terms of nightwear - what colours, what prints? We want to hear your opinons. Please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org, I look forward to hearing from you.