The Pink Renaissance

Pink is everywhere as of recently in the past year. It's on social media, restaurants, cars, houses, clothing and delicious donuts. My pink dreams have finally come true! Now what is the history of the color pink?

Pour a glass of rosé and let's take a journey through the history of the color pink.

Pink wasn't always "girly".

 Gainsborough's 18th century portrait of The Pink Boy.

Gainsborough's 18th century portrait of The Pink Boy.

"In the 18th century, it was perfectly masculine for a man to wear a pink silk suit with floral embroidery. Pink was considered slightly masculine as a diminutive of red, which was thought to be a warlike color", says Fashion scholar Valerie Steele, director of The Museum at the Fashion Institute Technology and author of several books on fashion. The pink-is-for-men trend continued through 1925. The Great Gatsby showed the pink suit was worn by men as stylish symbols of wealth. 

 "Like hell he is! He wears a pink suit." - The Great Gatsby

"Like hell he is! He wears a pink suit." - The Great Gatsby

Pink and blue were used as nursery colors for either boys or girls by our great-great-great relatives. Even recently as of the 20th century, a catalog of children's clothing would recommend pink for boys' clothing, because of its stronger and more passionate color. It didn't reach it's "femininity" connotation until the mid-century. In 1947 when Christian Dior introduced the ultra-feminine new look in pink, it changed the game.

 Dior New Look - 1948

Dior New Look - 1948

 

The 1950's turned pink into the gender code for girls. Fashion magazines then made it clear that the ideology of pink is gender specific. 

Watch the clip below and it all makes sense. Think Pink!

 "Think Pink" Funny Face 1957

"Think Pink" Funny Face 1957

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"It was this very sort of feminist critique of mid-century gender roles that helped solidify the feminization of pink for girls and women."  - Jo Paoletti

Pink is experiencing a renaissance.

The 1970's second-wave feminists pushed away these "feminine ideologies" and wanted to break free from these forced upon gender norms. Women started wearing pantsuits as a fashion statement in the late 1960's and really became a wardrobe favorite in the 1970's. The feminist protests would then expand the roles and life choices available for women today. However, we still got a lot of work to do.

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Contemporary feminists are embracing femininity now. For instance, the pussy hats with their bright pink in your face color embodies the challenging traditional assumptions about what it means to be feminine.

 Business Insider

Business Insider

 Gucci 2017 Runway

Gucci 2017 Runway

 Rihanna - Fenty x Puma 2017

Rihanna - Fenty x Puma 2017

Now pink is still pretty, but a little political. It's the color of a new kind of woman that can still wear it while defying expectations.

- NM

Nicole TsikounasComment