Skip to content

Princess dress




Strawberry Shortcake is truly vile. Violet is watching it so I can post this comic and it’s outrageously saccharine, over-feminised and filled with nauseating moralising. I have to quickly finish this blog entry so I can drag her away from it and deprogram her with a trip to the library!

Oh, and I have to say that my mother went to playcentre with an awesome group of women, some of whom who went on to be major figures in New Zealand’s arts and writing scene. See, hanging out on the steps watching kids hammer each other can lead to great things!

13 Comments leave one →
  1. 19/04/2013 10:19 am

    I loved this. Oh that’s the power of comics when it cuts through to the nitty gritty of life and you just have to go yes! Gosh you are good! I find it all a bit scarier with teenage girls. I have quite a debate provoked in my head now. Leapfrogging from ‘it’s ok to wear princess dresses’ and ‘it’s okay to cook in the kitchen and be a mother and write poems about that’ (I do, not the princess dress though); but there are ways in which what the strong women of the 1970s fought so hard for has dissolved in the carpet of living and we are immune to gender issues.

  2. 19/04/2013 10:59 am

    Great post. I think that book is still at Win’s I will bring it back. Rx

  3. 19/04/2013 11:32 am

    gumboots and fairy wings… oh yeah

  4. susan permalink
    19/04/2013 2:26 pm

    My favourites – in a great post – the fairy winged scooter – and of course the 70s mums,

  5. Emma Kelly permalink
    19/04/2013 5:53 pm

    I think Paula has a good point. To paraphrase, Feminism is like painting your house, you have to keep doing it every few years…I find it disturbing that people are (still) immune to gender issues. But maybe ’70s style feminism doesn’t suit young ones today and the messages that were relevant then need updating for a contemporary audience? I hated my red corduroy overalls and wanted a dress at 4. At 8 I went to Brownies on dress up day as a punk and all the other girls were fairies. Now I’m 35 if I mention feminism to most of my female friends they look at me like I’m still in that punk outfit at the Birkenhead Brownies in 1985. And as the western world votes for marriage equality, various states in the US move to further restrict women’s access to bitrth control and rights to abortion….I say Violet you wear that fairy dress and ride that scooter! Why can’t feminism be covered in glitter, waving a wand and wearing fairy wings? It’s time to make feminism as fun as a pride parade.

  6. 19/04/2013 8:08 pm

    Fantastic comic – my daughter is passionately addicted to what I call her My Big Fat Gypsy Wedding princess dress and while I DESPISE it (mainly because it was a gift from my mother-in-law, who is like a crack dealer when it comes to sodding Dora and other hideousness), I remember how much I loved stuff like that. It certainly doesn’t stop her from being a very strong personality…
    And I also agree with Paula – AND Emma. I hate to say it but perhaps feminism DOES need to be glittery and sparkly to attract the me, me, me generation. Heaven knows we still need it.

  7. Emma Kelly permalink
    20/04/2013 8:21 pm

    I’m still thinking about this one…well done Sarah, your work always stimulates my brain. Fairies are powerful. They can fly and they have wands…I used to want to be a witch because they too could fly etc. Princesses, not so much. They tend to sit around waiting for something to happen, except Ruby. Strawberry Shortcake is just odd, but hey The Kitchenmaid, at least Dora is an Explorer, right? I might not be so magnanimous if I had a Mum-in-law supplying Dora and other hideousness though!

  8. 21/04/2013 1:43 pm

    I’m a Mum from the late seventies and a Grandmother in the 21st century – we tried the no guns thing for my boys and then my gorgeous Greek neighbour came back from Greece with semi automatic repeat firing toy guns and my boys who had been fashioning guns from bread (yes!) were delighted and I was…. defeated… but hey my youngest lad is now an pacifist, human rights activist living in Seoul. My sons had Care Bears and hand-me-down clothes from Katie a friend’s daughter – very nice too, although they groan when they see photos of themselves wearing them ..and now I’m a granny with a granddaughter, and I love shopping for girly things – hubby bought a two dollar fairy princess dress at the school fair last year and our granddaughter promptly put it on, there and then. As for mothers-in-law….be kind to us… we’re bound to get it wrong – we’re pre-programmed to get it wrong – they make jokes about us – but we love our grandchildren and that’s all that matters.

    • Emma Kelly permalink
      21/04/2013 2:59 pm

      I want to press the ‘like’ button Maggie! Well put, all respect to ya!

  9. 21/04/2013 3:12 pm

    🙂 thanks Emma.

  10. 21/04/2013 8:14 pm

    Good point, Maggie. I know we should be kind to MILs – and as much as mine drives me mad, she is an exemplary grandmother and my daughter adores her, so that is something to cherish. And maybe I should be grateful that Strawberry S hasn’t entered the lexicon in our house. Yet. In fact, I’m surprised she’s still around. That fake strawberry smell must have eternal powers!

  11. 22/04/2013 1:13 pm

    My son gravitated towards a pair of heels in my wardrobe when he could first walk. Now he loves Strawberry Shortcake, Care freaking Bears, and has several Barbies … the number of people who eye that suspiciously as if there’s something wrong with it. It drives me bats.

  12. Emma Kelly permalink
    23/04/2013 5:01 pm

    Ah Kimberley, I know! I remember offering a really cool Superette (NZ band) t-shirt to a mother of a 4 year old boy who said ‘I can’t allow him to wear that, it’s pink!!!’ I saw a lovely family at the shops the other day – mother was pushing a pram with a baby in it, little girl was pushing a little pram with a (fake) baby in it, and little boy had a pram too. Hooray I say, let’s not mess them up with this gendered judgment stuff.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: