December 5, 2014

We Were Promised Unisex Unitards

Parents Magazine, July 1970, via alexandra lange for saturatedspace

As part of her tireless mission to lead our culture out of the Pink & Purple Is For Girls wilderness, Alexandra Lange has written an essay on the historical shifts in kids' color coding for Saturated Space, the color & design blog for the Architecture Association School of Architecture. It is titled, "Blue is for Blondes," which it apparently was at one point.

In other eras, Lange writes, kids were color coded by age, not gender. When industrially produced cotton and bleach and washing machines happened, white became the color of sanitary, hygienic nurseries.

She provides more context to the situation that's always baffled me: how and when bright primary McDonaldland colors took over in the 60s or 70s or 80s or whenever. That said, we could probably use some sharp thinking about the desaturated, greige Restoration Hardware hellscape we're teetering on the edge of right now, too, before we end up raising the next generation of extras for The Hunger Games.

Blue is for Blondes [, warning issuu alert]

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