As the holidays approach, I’m doing a series of reviews and giveaways for brands I believe in—all from indie companies that have girls’ best interests at heart. Today, I would like to introduce you Princess Free Zone.
Princess Free Zone was founded by Michele Yulo, the mom of a young girl named Gaby, in response to the limited clothing she saw available for her young daughter. When Gaby was young, she refused to use girly things, and she wouldn’t wear dresses at all. She preferred boyish clothes and characters, and as a result, she even wore boy underwear for a while. “She liked Spiderman,” Yulo recalls, “but they don’t make Spiderman underwear for girls.”
Yulo felt bad. “As a parent, I wanted my girl to feel like a girl. I would say, ‘Gaby, there’s nothing wrong with being a girl. It’s okay to wear dresses sometimes. There’s nothing wrong with that.’”
But soon, Yulo began noticing that there were quite a few other girls who were just like Gaby. “We met other girls who also preferred boy stuff,” Yulo says. “Then I read a study that Harvard put out, that says that one out of every ten kids is gender-nonconforming.”
So, Yulo launched Princess Free Zone to advocate for more choices for girls. There, she sells tee-shirts that break out of the princess trope, as well as a children’s book–Super Tool Lula–that she wrote about a little girl who likes to build things—just like Gaby. The story also has an anti-bullying theme, and Princess Free Zone is a national partner of the Pacer Organization’s Bully Prevention Center.
As Yulo writes on the Princess Free Zone web site:
Have you ever walked through a girls toy or clothing department and wondered, “Is this all there is?” What if the little girl you are shopping for doesn’t like pink and pastel colors? What if she won’t wear a tiara or a tutu? What if she doesn’t play with baby dolls or Barbies? What if she likes super heroes and race cars? Or what if you are simply a parent who doesn’t want her daughter pigeon-holed simply because large corporations have decided that pink is for girls and blue is for boys?
With over 40,000 princess items on the market, what’s a girl to do? Shopping in boys departments shouldn’t be the answer. Instead, let’s offer little girls a Princess Free Zone: A place where being a girl doesn’t mean donning a tiara. But more than that, PFZ embraces difference by removing the stereotypes typical in children’s merchandise conveying that each little girl is an individual with her own personal style.
Princess Free Zone will send one lucky reader of this blog a copy of Super Tool Lula and a “Kind=Cool” (anti-bullying) tee-shirt. The tee-shirt is available in the following sizes: 12 month onesie, 2T and 3T, kid’s XS-XL, and women’s XS-XL.
Enter below to win by 11:59 p.m. EST, Wednesday, December 18! One winner will be selected. This raffle is open to residents of the continental U.S.A., and the prizes will be sent to the winner by Princess-Free Zone.
Enter the Princess Free Zone giveaway here!
Rebecca Hains is a media studies professor at Salem State University. Follow her on Facebook and Twitter.
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I love this book series! I have one of those daughters. She loves to build things, and does not like PINK! She often is labeled a “tomboy” because she’d rather play cars and build things with her brother then become immersed in the “pepto” colored world of princesses!
Sure! I’ll enter this for my Niece-to-be…very soon! 🙂
It’s an interesting adventure navigating this overly commercialized, gender-ridged rules world and raising independent, strong kids! I’ve got a boy and a girl, and there is always something new to tackle (This week it is my son wanting to have a Tinkerbelle costume. My only objections are that she’s so sexualized, and it’s too cold for that little amount of clothes! But how other people will react to him when we figure out a version he can wear is a whole new ball of wax…). Love role models like Lula, and the message of Kind = Cool is valuable for everyone!
Cool, we’re very interested in seeing that book!
My daughter, Birdie, is a PFZ kind of girl. Not only is she non gender conformist, but she is very interested in tools and building. She loves to create. We have turned our dining room in to a woodworking station for her and she spends all afternoon in their working away. I know she would LOVE these Tool Lula books!
Love that tee shirt. I’m one of the girls that doesn’t like dresses either, but I will occasionally wear a skirt. I find most dresses are too frilly and pink for my liking. There needs to be more black ‘n skulls and plaid dresses. c:
Reblogged this on Lost in The World Map.