Sunday, March 24, 2019

Positively Pink

Pink maybe the only color that arouses strong feelings in people.  You either love it or hate it.  Originally coming from a South American dye, it was extremely expensive to have clothing in pink and  at first was considered a very masculine color in the French court and then throughout the rest of Europe during the 18th century.  But, somehow it's masculinity was lost in translation as pink made its way back across the pond to America. 
There is one mention in Louisa May Alcott's 1880 novel Little Women about how Meg tied ribbons on her twins to tell them apart—pink for the girl and blue for the boy.  Eventually department stores began doing the same, and pink has ever since been considered a color for girls. 
Though in the last decade I've seen a host of Easter egg colors, including pink, make their way into men's wear, they always seem to be a passing fad.  I hear things like, "It takes a secure man to wear pink,"  and then the color fades from the spotlight in men's wear.  Pink simply can't go the distance in men's clothing.  And perhaps due to the feminist movement, and women wanting to be taken seriously, pink even fell into disrepute with women.  It was the color worn by ditsy bimbos with no aspirations beyond the kitchen.  An intelligent woman, simply didn't wear pink. 
I went through my anti-pink phase to be sure.  I wasn't a little girl anymore, and wanted to be taken seriously as an adult.  I had an intelligent mind (still do) and I wanted that to show, so for many years I stayed away from anything pink like it would instantly lower my IQ if I even got too near it.  Black was my preferred color.  Then something wonderful happened—I know what you're thinking, and No, it wasn't that Legally Blonde came out and showed us all that a woman can be smart and successful while still being beautiful and wearing a crap-ton of pink, although let's face it, that movie did a lot to change our minds about pink.  No, the thing that happened was that I began to feel confident enough in myself—looks and intelligence-- to wear pink. 
I still remember the day I came to the office wearing color.  Not pink, but a pale blue sweater and khaki slacks, not the most adventurous outfit in the world, I'll admit, but my coworkers heads all turned.  One even hopped up from her chair and said, “Leandra!  You're...wearing color!”  I'll never forget the way her whole face lit up when she looked at me.  A dark cloud was lifting for me mentally and it was beginning to show in my appearance.
It was a year later, and starting at a new job that I really updated my wardrobe to include even more color such as a beautiful hot pink sweater with frilled collar and buttons down the neck and only one black thing—a classic blouse with tiny white polka dots and a pink ribbon at the waist—and I felt more confident, standing in front of a room full of eyes in that wardrobe than I ever had playing it safe with black. 
We all get stuck in these silly rules about how to dress, how to think, how the world will perceive us, and pink has taken the brunt of silly fashion rules fallout.  I can't even count how often I've heard women say things like, “I can't wear dresses,” “Pink doesn't look good on me,”  “Ugh, too girly.”  I promise that there is a shade of pink that's right for everyone, it just takes time to find it.  There's no shame in being a woman, which means, there's no shame in being girly.  Be proud of your femininity. Embrace it!  You're just as competent in dusty rose as you are in olive drab, but if wearing something beautiful makes you feel better about yourself, then your ability to express that competence soars even higher.  If you've been holding back on your inner girly-girl, let her out.  Let her shine.  Let her wear pink!

Shopping Info:  Love Me More Layered Tulle Skirt from ChicWishStriped Y Back Cami Top - $6.00 from: SHEIN, Marie Antoinette Cameo necklace made by me :)

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