Young girls are told more and more that they can do and be anything. Still, girl’s clothing does not reflect the full breadth of possibilities available, especially in the world of science. Enter buddingSTEM, a new science-themed clothing line created by two Washington mothers who asked the question, “Why is it so hard to find clothes for young girls who aspire to explore the universe or dig for dinosaurs?”
Co-founders, Jennifer Muhm and Malorie Catchpole wanted to expand what is available for girls. With their clothing line, girls 18 months to 8 years old can dress in clothes reflecting their interests without solely being a pretty pretty princess. Muhm related to ABC News, March 31, that “We’re not anti-princess. We’re not anti-pink. We’re not anti-girly. We just think there needs to be more than just that offered for our girls.“
The clothing line, which celebrates science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) features leggings, t-shirts, dresses and onesies with images of dinosaurs (some of the pieces are even pink!), outer space (rocket ships, included), and other science-themed items. Muhm told GeekWire that the idea came from trying to find clothes and costumes for the two cofounders’ young girls. While looking for Halloween costumes, for example, they noticed all the costumes for girls were princess and cat themed, while the boy costumes included things like firefighters and astronauts. Muhm’s daughter wanted to be an astronaut but was disappointed when she realized that those costumes were just for the boys.
Out of their frustrations and wanting to be sure that their daughters weren’t imprinted with the idea that possibilities such as becoming an astronaut weren’t for girls, Muhm and Catchpole went to work, picking the brains of friends, family and professionals about fashion and logistics and then started their business and brand. Now the two have launched a Kickstarter campaign to make the clothing line a reality. The Kickstarter campaign, which has just over a week to go, has already surpassed its goal and will most likely include a train-themed collection of shirts, leggings, dresses and undies if it reaches the next stretch goal.
Can rocket ship leggings and dinosaur dresses really empower young girls? “The images matter,” write the women on their official webpage for the clothing line, “They tell young girls that things like science and engineering aren’t for them.” It’s more than time to stop discouraging girls and start supporting them in such a way that they can express their interests.