Pink or blue?

At a baby shower, the proud parents will display pink balloons if the baby’s a girl, and blue ballons if the baby’s a boy. Who decided that pink=feminine and blue=masculine? Does anyone have a clue about this?

“I’m not bad, I’m just drawn that way…”
–Jessica Rabbit,Who Framed Roger Rabbit

My grandmother told me once that originally it was pink for boys, because pink is basically a lighter shade of red, the power color, and blue for girls because it’s the subdued, meeker color. But she didn’t know when or why it was switched.

I don’t know if grandma was right or not, I just thought I’d pass it on :slight_smile:

“I hope life isn’t a big joke, because I don’t get it,” Jack Handy

The one source I’ve seen on this was that there was no choice or symbolism involved. Someone arbitrarily used blue to represent boys and pink for girls. I’d say that pink could have been chosen because it was thought of as a “feminine” color, but that association could easily have been after the color was assigned to girls.

I’m pretty sure Cecil covered this one. I’ll let you know if I happen on it. However, IIRC from his column, you’re all just WRONG! :wink:

“I wept because I had no shoes, then I met a man with no feet. So I took his shoes” - Dave Barry

My wife was reading a book about babies and traditions and such (i don’t have the title with me at the moment). The tale in the book goes as such:

Blue as well as Purple were royal colors and the Baby boys were to be placed in blue. Girls were placed in just about any other color, but pink was selected often because it was close to the skin color.

To deal with men by force is as impractical as to deal with nature by persuasion.

David Feldman, in his book Imponderables, addresses the question. Quoting:
"The association of colors with babies undoubtedly started as an attempt to identify the gender of that one group of humans to whom the cliche ‘they all look alike’ often applies.
"But why blue for boys? In ancient times, it was believed that evil spirits lingered over nurseries and that certain colors possessed the capability to combat evil. Blue was considered the most powerful color, possibly because of its association with the sky and thus, heavenly spirits. Since boys were then considered the most valuable natural resource to parents, blue clothing was a cheap form of insurance.
“Evil spirits apparently couldn’t bother with pestering baby girls. Not only were girls not dressed in blue, but they had no color to call their own until centuries later. Our association of pink with girls stems from European legend, which professed that baby girls were born inside of pink roses…[and] that baby boys were born in blue cabbage patches…”

Feldman isn’t always as concise as one would wish, and he’s nowhere as comprehensive or funny as Cecil, but he’s usually got high accuracy marks for what he does say.

OK, I was also WRONG. I was thinking of Feldman’s Imponderables; no wonder I couldn’t find it in the SD archives. In fact, I have the book open to the page discussing it (29) and was fixin’ to type it in when I noticed that CKDH had beaten me to it. Oh well, thanks for saving me from all that typing CK! :slight_smile:

“I wept because I had no shoes, then I met a man with no feet. So I took his shoes” - Dave Barry

Um…uh…ED? Buddy…why is it your asking this stuff about babies…you get someone pregnant? Your the last one I would think would do such a thing out of wedlock. Oh By The Way Ed…I’m waiting for your latest movie review…

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