I never wanted to be a princess. I hated the color pink. And heaven help you if you ever tried to get me in a dress. I was a tomboy. Still am. And barring any weird telenovela style bouts of concussed personalty changing amnesia, always will be.

The term “tomboy” was a comfort for me growing up, because it served as a diagnosis of sorts for why I was different. A reason for why my eyes would glaze over in boredom at princess birthday parties, and why my wardrobe of choice was loose cotton t-shirts and skate shoes when the other girls were beginning to use their milkshakes to bring all the boys to the yard. So I thought this article about how the term tomboy is becoming antiquated to younger generations was pretty interesting. It turns out when kids are allowed to just “do you” without all the weird gender expectations, there’s no such thing as a tomboy. There’s just little Kelly with the awesome Ninja Turtle collection.

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Blazer J.Crew
Shirt Wildfang (also love the coffee mug)
Jeans Rag & Bone
Shoes Giuseppe Zanotti (higher heel height) (similar)
Handbag Givenchy (similar)
Watch Larsson & Jennings (similar)
Bracelet Frye
Sunglasses Kate Spade (also here)
Jewelry Downtown LA, vintage, Catbird, and Vrai & Oro

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Join the Conversation


  1. says: Ashley LaMar

    I was the same way when I was little. I despised pink. I wanted nothing to do with dresses. All I wanted was to spend time with my boyish toys and be a tomboy. It all changed somewhere around the age of 20 or 22 though and now I’m all about pink, dresses, and other girly things.

  2. says: Caroline

    I always found the term agonizing because of the implication that the non-tomboys were weaker, with their feminine hobbies and love of pink. As if playing with action figures is vastly superior to playing with Barbies. Despite growing up to be a lesbian and an engineer, there was always this nagging feeling that I wasn’t a true feminist (or lesbian for that matter) unless I stopped wearing dresses and started playing sports. I’m glad we’re moving away from that and teaching children that traditionally girly interests have just as much value as boyish ones.

  3. says: Anu Salow

    Very good topic, Kelly, and a very good article you linked. I just read it properly. I’ve never been “a tomboy”, but I like mathematics and computers and little robots. I’m teaching these topics.

    To evaluate a girl for not being “girlish” by grownups? Amazing. (Children are rude when somebody is different, I understand that. )”Does Alexandra ever wear a dress?” He he, I can see a little finger rising :) Kelly, be always yourself, you have found your style and you are highly educated. :) Use high heels when you want and mens shirts when you feel like that and tell it to everybody. And for other side, just like Caroline wrote, your strength doesn’t correlate to the color of your clothes.

    Maybe dressing to the boys clothes is a shelter for a young girl against all kind of teasing for being a girl growing up to be a woman. As women we’re still as unsure about ourselves in this confusing world giving so many demands. Let’s go on conversation and let the children grow to equal, understanding, caring people, who pay regard to other people and the environment. This is how we’ve put it in our new Curriculum2016 here in Finland.

    Summer has started here in the north – have a nice week end xo –Anu

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