What is Neutral?

I just found out two more people I know are expecting babies very soon.  In neither case has the gender been announced.  I now have three blankets to make: one for a boy and two *gulp* neutral ones.  I don’t really enjoy trying to put together a neutral color scheme.

When I was born neutral was bright “crayon” colors: blue, red, green, yellow, purple.  By the time my brother was born it was pastels: blue, green, yellow, pink, and maybe purple.  Now I feel like anything with even a hint of pink or purple is taboo for boys.  Everything has to be shades of white/black/grey/brown/teal/yellow.  Green, at least “crayon” green is a boy color.  Yellow is usually for girls.  It leaves little to work with.  Especially because I don’t like grey and yellow together.  I can’t make everything brown/white/teal or grey/white/teal or, I suppose, white/teal/yellow if I was feeling adventuresome.

For a while I have wanted to try granny square patchwork blankets with self-striping yarn and this seemed like a good chance.  I found some yarn (in my stash, amazingly,) and I got started on two blankets.

IMG_8405 smallIMG_8408 small

The top one is crocheted with Lion Brand Landscapes in “Mountain Range.”  It’s a very thick worsted weight yarn.  The bottom one is done with two strands of Red Heart Boutique Unforgettable in “Tidal.”  It’s a very thin worsted weight yarn, and two strands results in a square exactly the same size as with the Landscapes yarn.

The big question is: Are they “boy” colors or “neutral” colors?  My boys say the top is boy colors and the bottom is neutral.  I would have said the opposite, or both neutral.  Thoughts?

How about these other yarns from my stash?

IMG_8401

obviously neutral IMG_8403

These have some purplish grey.  Still neutral?  It’s not a usual color for me and I’m a little worried it will make a very ugly blanket, but I’m going to try anyway.IMG_8400

and these.  The left one definitely has some greyish/purplish/pinkish along with charcoal grey and olive green.  Girly or neutral?  And the one on the right is what I think of as peacock colors: royal blue, rich teal, emerald green, and dark indigo.  Girly, boy, or neutral?

I suppose I could wait until the babies are born and announced and then make blankets. But, my generation is finally starting to have babies and I’m going to be making a lot of blankets.  I don’t want to let it get ahead of me.  It would be good to have some neutral ones.

What are your favorite neutral combinations?  Would you gift a baby boy something with pink or purple in it?

And I’m not sure I’m going to be able to give away the octagon blanket.  I was working on the trim and thinking about it and I kind of want to keep it for my next nephew (that was a hint, sisters!)  So, I’m setting it aside for now.  I’m going to make three blankets to give away, then I’ll go back and finish the trim.

Note: my thoughts are very different when I am making things for my kids instead of giving them as gifts.  I don’t raise my kids gender neutral, but I also try not to squish them into gender molds.  Yes, I dress my baby daughter in pink a lot.  I had four boys first and I’m having fun with the pink and purple and flowers and butterflies.  But if she someday tells me she never wants to wear pink or a dress again, I’ll follow her lead.  My 4th son, age 2 1/2, has wavy hair down past the middle of his back (with light blond curls) and his favorite shoes are pink ones he chose himself.  The older three all wear pink, purple, and rainbow sometimes.  It’s up to them.  But gifts are different.

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2 thoughts on “What is Neutral?

  1. I like white, grey and teal or white, grey and mustard for gender neutral. I made both of mine blankets before they were born and didn’t know gender beforehand. One blanket was red, green, blue, purple and cream stripes and the other was rainbow colours and white. You have some beautiful yarns to choose from in your stash!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Personally, I’m in the flexible camp. I used a blue-green variegated for both the unknown sex baby who turned out to be my nephew and for the unknown sex baby who turned out to be my daughter, but I used a yellow for the nephew I know is a nephew. I think greens and yellows are acceptable for either sex, even for people who don’t sometimes dress their daughters in blue hand-me-downs.

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