Is Carhartt Being Sexist (and other clothing manufacturers)

Hi All

I don’t think I am worked up enough to make this a pitting.

I have some really nice Carhartt gear, and I love it. They have a hoodie, the J149 that I can’t get enough of. I have several.

My wife is always stealing them, and when I complain she points out I could buy her one. OK, Christmas hint received.

Well, most of the really good stuff (like my preferred hoodie) isn’t available in womens colors. What I find is almost always imported (maybe matters, maybe doesn’t) and lighter weight. And yes, I can buy her a mens version, but I know her and she does like her girly colors (she’s great- all girl on the outside, but with a tough inside). Is it really too much to ask for some of the “good stuff” to be available in girly colors? That’s what she wants.

Women’s… colors? I guess I don’t think colors have genders. Or, rather, I don’t think a clothing manufacturer has to come out with special colors just-for-women to be not sexist. I can wear Carhartt Orange just as well as a guy can. You and your wife might not like the colors that Carhartt chooses to make their women’s line in, but that doesn’t make them sexist. In fact, I almost think it’s the other way around - if everything “women’s” comes in only pink or pastels or whatever, that to me seems more sexist than just saying “hey, we make stuff in colors x, y, and z, regardless of if it’s men’s or women’s, take your pick.”

That said, I do have a bone to pick with Carhartt; none of their women’s stuff fits me. I really like the brand, but heck if I can figure out what women they make their stuff for. It’s all either too tight or too loose or both at once.

My answer to the OP’s big question is that, while I’m not familiar with Carhartt clothing, the garment industry in general is happy to sell women clothes of poorer quality than comparable items they make for men – and often at a higher price. Since the men’s versions are (shockingly) designed to fit men, it’s not always practical for women to just get the men’s version.

That said, since Mrs. OldOlds is happy to borrow your hoodies, the men’s hoodies presumably fit her okay. So I’d suggest getting her a men’s hoodie in whatever you think is the least objectionable color. I’m assuming they come in neutrals like black and navy, which may not be “girly” but are probably inoffensive to your wife.

I think you’ve misunderstood the OP’s complaint. The colors available in the women’s line aren’t the problem; Carhartt apparently already makes women’s clothing in colors Mrs. OldOlds would like. The problem is that the clothing from the women’s line apparently isn’t as heavy-duty as the men’s line and doesn’t include some items such as the desired hoodie.

You hit the nail on the head. I referenced the the hoodie I wear by catalog number because it is a really nice item- US made, 12oz cotton, a brass zipper that could tow a horse trailer, insulated, and that mesh interior lining that lets it all breathe. These things are $75+ and worth every penny. They wear like iron. And look like a potato sack, but so what- it’s functional clothing not fashion wear.

If you go to the website, the closest you can get in female form is a pale imitator. While I am sure Mrs. Oldolds would like the fitted midsection, and a little looser around the breasts, the weight is lower. The item is not insulated. The zipper is not heavy duty. And it is imported (we could argue over whether it matters, but a US made garment commands a premium).

Ideally they would have a female version of the J149 (in girly colors). Barring that, they could make the J149 in girly colors. They do neither. They make a shittier (though fitted) hoodie in girly colors.

And if one wishes to debate whether colors have gender, that could be an interesting one. However, there are colors that are generally seen as feminine and Mrs. Olds will make no apologies for being a stereotypical feminine woman. She is however tough as nails and will kick the asses of any who have a problem with that :wink:

Looks like the J149 is discontinued so no one is getting one.

And the replacement is 50/50 poly cotton so definitely inferior. Bad move, Carhartt. I’m pissed off that Costco has been slipping down the garbage hole too–used to be able to get a lot of nice 100% cotton or wool items, now they’re all garbage polyester blends. Price hasn’t changed though. flips double bird

i’ve been very happy with Duluth in terms of both their women’s offerings and men’s stuff. Hard-wearing, and as far as i can tell, equally good quality for both.

Duluth is good quality but they do not stock petite (garment industry-speak for Women’s Short) so I don’t buy much there, being 5’2".

L.L.Bean has a lot of sturdy women’s clothing.

This is a new place that sells women’s coveralls and overalls. Have not purchased anything there yet but they are on my list. Rosie’s Workwear

I treasure my heavy lined duck Carhartt hooded jacket. It is purple and kicks ass. They don’t sell it any more but it is everything the men’s jackets are.

  • added note: Patagonia has a workwear for women line now.

I have a purple Carhartt barn coat too–it’s almost TOO warm to wear unless there’s actual snow all over the place. That’s a good problem to have.

Speaking of Duluth-

How the hell can they make the claim on their underwear, “No Pinch, No Sweat, No Stink” ?

Clearly, two of three of those conditions are beyond their control.

My wife bought me a bunch of pairs of their underwear; it didn’t live up to the claims.

This is America. It’s not about “being ****ist”. Saying “oprime el dos” not about being Hispanist.

It is about Carhartts maximizing their market share by identifying and directing sales to expanding market sectors.

I would have more likely expected an accusation like this against Dickies.

Get some patches to spruce up those drab work clothes. You can find some giant flowers or whatever on Etsy or something. They might say they are iron on but it’s always best if you can get them sewn on.

Put me down with those slightly confused at the color thing. In the case of Carhartt, Winchester, and others I think the colors are more in terms of work/use than they are gender. Although Carhartt is branching out it is still basically “work clothes” and that is not something you want in say a powder blue or lime green. Just like a nice Winchester hunting coat in say a lovely chartreuse may not be a big seller. I could be wrong but that is the thought that pops into my brain.

I’d offer to babysit your children/cats/dogs/other pets but the commute would be killer.

Or, what Athena said.
And re. “fitted clothing”: so long as it doesn’t come with multiple measurements, it’s not necessarily fitted. I’ve tried on many women’s tops which didn’t fit me any better than the men’s counterparts; women’s hoodies are apparently designed by people who think cups are what you drink wine from. The guys’ versions may look like potato sacks but I can get in and out of them without deserving a gymnastics medal.

Is this the product? While not specifically girly, I, as a girl, would not find the cedar or blue overly male or objectionable.

I need to spend some actual money on a jacket such as this. I hate the two or three that I have.

Frankly I would LOVE tough Carhartt type clothes that fit my frame, was the same weight as men’s, with real goddamned pockets, and was NOT in “girly” colors. I don’t like pastels, I hate pink. Give me a good robust dark green or blue, a rich burgundy, even a royal purple.

I may be female but I do a lot of outdoor grunge work, and I think I can look pretty damned good doing it in rich colors.

So there :stuck_out_tongue:

I hear this a lot and I don’t buy it. Men’s clothes come in many different sizes off the rack. Unless you are purchasing underwear or expensive, custom tailored outer garments, I find that all “men’s” clothes are designed to fit generic humans. They’re just marketed towards men.

I mean, my wife is smaller than me but she wears my t-shirts no problem. Her shirts have shorter sleeves and a tapered waist, but that’s marketing and fashion, not function. Every time a woman complains to me about how her pants don’t have pockets I have this same conversation. “I have no problem finding pants with pockets. Perhaps you’re looking in the wrong part of the store?” “Well, have you shopped for clothes in the women’s section of the store?” “No, because I prefer pants with pockets. Maybe you should come check out the pocketed pants section of the store?”

Just because they try to sell you garbage doesn’t mean you have to buy it. I mean, make no mistake, clothing companies are sexist. They market uncomfortable, flimsy clothes to women that are less functional and far more expensive than the clothes marketed towards men. But unlike the Jim Crow days, nobody is stopping you from riding at the front of the bus.

The functional, durable and cheaper clothes are merely a few steps away in the same store! Go buy them if that’s what you want! Stop buying the pink glittery garbage offered to you, and the clothing manufacturers will respond. Until then, I’m sick of hearing about how men have it so great because we have pockets, when the person complaining admittedly walked right past the pants with pockets in the store and voluntarily paid for pants without pockets.

Female here. Unless I wear tents (AKA really large men’s sizes), yes, I really find women’s clothes fit me better.

I have also noticed at many vendors that the quality of what is sold as women’s wear for similar items is very inferior. Oddly, women’s clothing tends to cost more. I end up taking my business elsewhere when I find these vendors.