Five minutes on Pinterest will teach you that there are more ways to turn an old T-shirt into something else than there are child sweatshop workers making the T-shirts in the first place. And usually the upgrade is just a different T-shirt. But tees are also made into jewelry, rugs, grocery bags, headbands, pot holders, pillows, hats, Christmas garlands, reusable menstrual pads and so on. Everything you see below? All T-shirts:
We live in a time when well-fed American women aren't required to sew, knit, garden, bake and invent new art from baby footprints just to keep the family alive. So every now and then we want to feel like we made something with our soft, elaborately manicured hands. Real sewing, the kind that takes patterns and discipline and math, is for a different kind of crafter ... the kind who would still be sewing up a clothes-storm if Pinterest never saw the light of day. T-shirt renovations, on the other hand, don't necessarily need an eye for detail, a sewing machine or good taste.
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That thing? Shirts.
All you need are a couple of old tees, an hour off the Internet and the determination to keep going until you end up with something to post on your Tumblr account.
Like everything else in life, Pinterest organizes itself into neat categories, like Food & Drink, Health & Fitness and Things That Are Not Funny. Nestled into those categories are a few that should theoretically appeal to men: Cars & Motorcycles, Geek -- oh no wait, that's usually girls posting pictures of Doctor Who and screenshots from How I Met Your Mother. There are definitely a few guys in the Technology section, posting pictures of their favorite gadgets and whatnot. And there are plenty of men in the Men's Fashion section, pinning their favorite outfits, because boys are allowed to do that and who are you to judge? No one, that's who. Shut your mouth.
Unless you have advice for what sort of bracelet to pair with a Rolex and an Armani suit.
Go to those places and you will find the men of Pinterest ... but you'll also find toddler chore list systems, green smoothie recipes and "Quotes to Live Buy (sic)" that were accidentally posted by women who clicked the wrong section. In other words, women won't let the men even have those tiny little sections. Shh -- don't tell the men's right's guys. They don't need anything else to cry into their lattes over.
In America, Pinterest is dominated by women, composed of as much as 83 percent according to one analysis. How did this happen? Why isn't Pinterest like Tumblr, where all the sexes mingle as friends and equals and lovers? Media experts are still trying to figure out the answer, while man-centered copycat sites like Dudepins and Manteresting struggle to find the same success. By posting pictures of girls in tank tops and mugs of beer.
We already have porn and liquor stores. What does this add?
My unscientific explanation for the disparity is that Pinterest is now the home of the great mom/crafter-blog boom of the mid-2000s. The bloggers who had specific skills to offer quietly kept writing, making stuff and getting better at producing real world things besides cute anecdotes. The bloggers who didn't have those skills faded quietly into Facebook and Twitter ... until Pinterest came along. Now those of us who don't know how to actually make or do anything cool can steal ideas from the people who do.
Holy crap .... is Pinterest what Ayn Rand predicted all along?
Check out more from Kristi in 7 Classic Kid's TV Shows Clearly Conceived on (Bad) Acid and 7 Hilariously Failed Attempts at Politically Correct Toys.