Feb 28 2012

Shirt happens

If you are a lady whose heart’s desire is to buy a Boing-Boing T-shirt featuring a giant angry unicorn puking blood, the privilege will cost you $2 more than it will cost a dude. This is because, although the women’s shirts are smaller and use less fabric, women Boingers apparently must appease dudenation by spending more money and sporting a sex-identifying “deluxe baby doll fit.”

I guess the women’s “deluxe baby doll” shirt is actually a onesie, since as everyone knows, grown women identify with, model their lives on, and wish to resemble both babies and dolls.


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  1. Linden

    Women are also supposed to wear “boy shorts” as underthings. Which I don’t, because not being an actual boy, they tend to ride up my crotch.

  2. AlienNumber

    It is a woman’s duty to make 20% less than a man doing anything twice as well as he ever would, while paying at least 40%+ more on anything at any time.

    For example, I was passing a barber and saw an ad for, you’ve guest it, haircuts. It said: “men’s haircuts: $10 and up, women’s haircuts: $25 and up.
    As a very stylish short-haired female, I couldn’t help but rejoice at seeing that people will still cut women’s hair for under $50! Hallelujah.

  3. Stella

    Also: women’s haircuts.

  4. yttik

    Ha! You shouldn’t joke about boy shorts and baby dolls because now they actually do make a onesie with a boy cut bottom. I guess they were worried that the boy shorts wouldn’t ride up your crotch effectively enough, so they gave it shoulders.

  5. Kea

    Lifelong boycotting. After a while, even the thought of what happens to the money down the line begins to irk, and a bartering system may be the only effective protest. But when economic depression kicks in, as a direct result of the protest of the invisible, trapping spending power into choiceless poverty, what then? The last time this happened heads rolled. Literally.

  6. Stillwater

    Sorry to jump in here OT and too late, but I’m happy to see ‘Twisty’ is the moniker of choice once again. ‘Jill’ was fine, of course. But I always came here to read Twisty!

  7. yankee sumbitch

    Even the saintly patagucci. The retro snap t fleece sold around xmas: $99 for the men’s; $119 for the women’s. Possibly because women are privileged to order them in bougainvillea and the women’s fleece is (get this) plush? I tried to convince myself it’s only supply/demand but in my secret sad heart IBTP.

  8. someonered

    It’s like a tax on lady drag.

  9. stacey

    Totes a tax. I was looking at wholesale t-shirt prices and the American Apparel (I know, I know) “girly” shirt was more than its guy equivalent. Gahr. Also, I’m so glad I gave up Boing Boing long ago, if only to avoid the gratuitous Corey Doctorow self-promotion posts. I had a difficult time, actually, trying to find a non-sexist “best of the web” type site to replace it; however, I find i can get by with what my FB friends post, and what the art-blogs I subscribe to post. Everything goes around so fast now that I hear about it one way or another.

  10. Katy

    Ditto for TechGeek. I gave the XXL Ladies baby-doll-style “Rock, Paper, Scissors, Lizard, Spock” shirt to my 9 year old child, and bought the XXL male version, which is still too fucking small at the neck. Hellooo! We’re gamers, we’re geeks, we’re fat!

  11. Liz

    We have a handy guide to sexism and tshirts over on the geekfeminism wiki! Complete with advice on how to produce or obtain tshirts that might be slightly less horrible than the usual.


  12. Meaghan

    $2 if you are a lady, $2 if you are fat, so $4 if you are fat AND a lady. And it has nothing to do with size or cut if the fabric is mass-produced and the labour is sweated and foreign. I am both fat and a lady and I pay an extra $20 at least on clothes on a regular basis because of the limited number of stores which condescend to carry plus-size clothing. It sucks!

  13. Copperfield

    Tell me about it, it’s unbelievably sexist that there aren’t any baby doll versions of these beauties:


  14. Kwailin

    To Linden and anyone else who may be interested: the so-called boy shorts bear little if any relation to actual boys’ or men’s briefs. “Boy shorts” are designed for instant wedgie, as good as any thong. Boys’ briefs are comfy (another bonus: no scratchy inside seams!) and stay in place relatively better. The only downside I can think of is they may not accomodate everyone’s hip-to-waist ratio. Once trying them (and being extremely annoyed to discover the intentional chasm in comfort between women’s and men’s underwear, for which, IBTP!), I’ve never looked back.

  15. Lurker Lyn

    Sounds like “Deluxe baby doll shirts” are meant to be worn by Deluxe baby dolls – like the Tiny Tears with real nappy soiling.

    Also: F*ck paying for haircuts. The concept of being looked at with disdain, having my hair pulled then parting with all the cash in my wallet is all too much like playground bullying for my liking.

  16. yttik

    I shop a lot of menswear, in part because the higher prices for the same damn thing in a female version annoys me, but also for the comfort and fit. The kids are horrified, but often a pair of men’s jeans cling to me in the right places and look better. Maybe I am unfashionable and really don’t get it, but you put a gorgeous young girl in pair of today’s “girl jeans” and the waist is somewhere around her pubic bone, and she’s suddenly got muffin tops and a plumbers crack. I’m vain people, there’s no way I’m walking around like that.

  17. Ginjoint

    Gah!! Change is afoot!! *looking around in panic* I feel like I fell into a parallel dimension or something.

  18. Darragh Murphy

    But happily, there’s a lot of cheese and butter in this new place.

  19. Kaia

    This is the exact reason why I buy men’s clothes, cheaper and not irritatingly tight.

  20. Kali

    Your banner is making me hungry.

    I get my hair cut only in places with unisex prices. I avoid dry-clean only clothes. I don’t buy T-shirts so blatantly advertised as being priced to discriminate against women. I’m still quite sure that I am being screwed in terms of what I’m paid and what I’m charged in ways that I’m unaware of, and for that IBTP.

  21. Mildred

    I always buy the men’s size small rather than the baby doll cut, its always way too tight around the chest and too short, the material is thinner too. If I want a t-shirt with a unicorn having a spew I want people to look at the fun illustration not my tits!
    Today I was wearing women’s jeans and a normal not very tight cardigan and t-shirt and no matter how I sat down my back/kidney region/lower stomach was exposed. So bloody frustrating when you’re already feeling a bit ill and want to be warm and comfortable. I was wearing the most generic, practical women’s clothing money can buy but they insist on making them pointlessly tight and too short.
    Holy SHIT, how uncomfortable are hipster jeans! And they are the only kind you can buy these days!

  22. yardshark

    Yeah but…although I have no idea where the stupid “baby doll” name came from, I CAN understand why there are different shirts for women and why they are a little more expensive.

    I have serious tittes and the curvier cut shirts fit me WAY better than the cheap, straight-cut men’s versions that are made of non-stretchy fabric. The men’s are too tight around my chest and hips while bagging at the waist, they are always too long, the sleeves are like floppy stovepipes or sails or summat, and the necks are too high. The women’s versions tend to be better quality, for reals, so $2 more is not a biggie for me to get something better.

    So I will dissent and say that I am really glad that not all T-shirt offerings demand that all bodies conform to flat-cardboard-cutout-man-style.

    However, I would never, ever PAY for a unicorn shirt of any cut. ICK.

  23. tinfoil hattie

    I’m used to paying the fattie tax for bigger clothes. I wonder if there’s a woman tax on top of the fattie tax?

    slightly OT – anyone else notice that in all the fitness and sports stores, none of the workout gear fits fat people? If we’re so freaking disgusting and we need to get off the couch and OMG OBESITY! EPIDEMIC! then why can’t we buy clothes in which to begin the de-larding process?

    Maybe it’s like pregnancy. Once you’ve gotten pregnant, tough shit for you! HAVE that baby! If you’re FAT, you deserve to be punished by having to STAY fat!

  24. Kaia

    Tinfoil hattie you’ve hit the nail on the head, its not about helping people out of an undesirable situation.
    Its about taking the moral high ground so they can act and feel superior, if they helped you they could no longer feel their much needed ego boost from knowing there is someone further down the ladder than they are.
    You must stay pregnant or fat so they can keep their boot on your neck.

  25. SUSANW

    Ah, maternity clothes. I remember them as pre-pubescent or post-menopausal in their dreary bubble-gumness, and nothing over a size 14. Of course one can’t possibly be pregnant at that size because no man wants a chunky chubette. One more bit of marginalization brought to you by the same firm that produces cops who say “Who’d want to rape YOU?”

  26. Frumious B.

    I never thought about why boyshorts are called boyshorts when a) they would not accommodate bio-boy stuff and b) they are marketed for girls. Funny, b/c the term “boyfriend jeans” or “boyfriend shirt” or “boyfriend any article of clothing” causes optical spasms from the eye rolling.

  27. gingerest

    I despise the term “baby doll” but I appreciate shirts that aren’t cut for dudes. Gigantic square shirts that hang down to my mid-thigh aren’t even useful as nightshirts, because I don’t like having the opening between the sleeve and the torso hanging half-way down my chest. A more tailored shirt puts a nice bit of cloth in my armpit, instead of having the lower side of my arm stuck to the side of my chest.

    Gigantic athlete events can get it right – I have seriously ugly shirts from various Winter Runs and bike rides and they fit fine, they’re just hideous because they’re covered in logos and generally the “art” is themed in monstrous color combinations. But I can cope with ugly, if it fits. So why can’t geek conferences and events make a T-shirt that fits? Mysterious.

  28. Twisty

    Yo, I’m not saying “man clothes” are better than “girl clothes.” I’m saying there ought to be options for women that don’t involve babyness, tightness, latex, lace, “feminine ruching,” extra money, or stupid colors.

  29. gingerest

    Oh, no, you’re perfectly clear. I was just having a bit of a moan about the armpit problem. It’s obvious that because women are second-class citizens – where they get to be citizens at all – they should be forced to pay more for stupider clothes that don’t fit.

  30. stacey

    I took a patternmaking class last fall and the instructor confirmed the utter arbitrary notion of “sizes” in the fashion industry. Everything (in north America) is based on a slim size 8, which is smaller than a 1960s size 8, and they size up or down from there. All I know is that two of the sz 8 dress forms could fit in me, and I’m not overly-large.

    The class was about making patterns for our own bodies; drafting basic top and bottom pieces from our measurements, there wasn’t a single one of us (we were a small class of 10) who didn’t need some major alteration to make the pattern fit. The entire fashion industry is such a crock.

  31. KittyWrangler

    @stacey, February 28, 2012 at 7:19 pm

    Hopefully I’m not too late but what art blogs do you frequent? I’m having serious trouble finding blogs that discuss actual art, versus art/fashion, art/DIY, art/interior design, art/market, art/people. Those things are all fine but if you can recommend a blog dedicated to actually discussing art itself I’d be thrilled! I recently landed on ArtFagCity and I think I like it.

  32. Anne

    If it’s not a “babydoll” with pink sparkle princess crap on it, it’s XXXXXXXXL. There’s no in-between anymore in t-shirt land. Seems like you used to be able to find t-shirts in crazy-obscure sizes like “medium.”

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