‘Sad Beige’ Has Taken Over Baby Gear, Clothing, Decor | Kanebridge News
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‘Sad Beige’ Has Taken Over Baby Gear, Clothing, Decor

Parents are gravitating toward neutral hues that match their minimalist tastes; ‘I don’t think many kids’ favourite colour is beige’

Thu, Nov 17, 2022 9:11amGrey Clock 3 min

Krissy Kyne, a 27-year-old makeup artist in San Antonio, is giving birth to a baby boy this week. The room waiting for him at home is neither blue nor pink, but beige.

It has a light-coloured wood crib, a woven jute rug, a latte-hued changing pad and a cream ottoman, with oatmeal throw pillows and camel muslin blankets strewn about. Ms. Kyne said her mother-in-law told her her taste for neutrals looked “sterile,” but she has committed to the aesthetic, stocking drawers with beige onesies, beige sweatsuits and beige socks.

Ms. Kyne joins a wave of parents eschewing bright and stereotypically gendered colours for kid wares, and instead choosing earthy, neutral tones aligned with minimalism. It’s a look TikTok satirist Hayley DeRoche has termed “sad beige,” but some see it as a happy development: The ecru, blond and brown products fit right in with their stylishly muted décor in the rest of the house.

“Our whole house isn’t changing because we have kids,” said Jen Atkin, a celebrity hairstylist and entrepreneur in Los Angeles known for working with the Kardashians—although she conceded that the aesthetic can invite stains. Because she has two kids and three dogs, she bought easy-to-clean beige outdoor rugs and couches for her home.

Kylie Jenner showed off the beige furnishings in her son Wolf’s nursery in a video from March. Caitlin Covington, a content creator in North Carolina known online as “Christian Girl Autumn,” often dresses her daughter in brown and ecru ensembles for portraits.

“I’ve been influenced by influencers,” said Amina Kadyrova, a mother of three in New Jersey. “I’m a victim of the marketing system. But I genuinely like it.” Neutral colours are easier to mix and match on kids, she added.

Earlier this year, Baby Gap created a designated beige section inside some stores after researching market trends, according to the brand’s head designer, Carolyn Koziak. A new line from Walmart, Easy Peasy, includes a lot of beige, too. According to Etsy, searches for beige kids clothes jumped 67% in the past 12 months compared with the previous period.

“It seems to be marketing this fantasy that if I buy neutrals, my children will also be neutral, calm and quiet,” said Ms. DeRoche, the TikTok user, who lives in Petersburg, Va.

Most children’s companies still sell lots of toys and clothes in bright and inviting primary colours. “It’s important to expose kids to learning colours to help them with their visual perception,” said Ann-Louise Lockhart, a pediatric psychologist in San Antonio. “Having variety is important for brain development.”

Amanda Gummer, a neuropsychologist and children’s play expert in Britain, said there isn’t evidence that colourless toys stunt developmental milestones. Still, Dr. Gummer said, “the motivation of having an Instagrammable house and not letting kids explore and make a mess worries me. I don’t think many kids’ favourite colour is beige.”

Ms. Atkin said her children can get their colour fix elsewhere. “My son will go to indoor gymnasiums, play centres, museums, and he gets covered in slime and goo, and colour and glitter,” she said. “We do that outside of our house, and then we get to come home to a nice, calm, clean environment.”

Other parents noted the pacifying nature of neutrals. “Brown and beige make me feel calmer,” said Maddie Berna, a photographer and mother of two in central California. “I personally don’t like super bright colours, and they do wear that sometimes, but it’s annoying to see all the time.”

Ms. Berna’s mother, Ashley Durham, isn’t a fan.

“All of Ellie’s bows are the same kind of beige and I would like her to wear something that sticks out more,” she said, referring to her 15-month-old granddaughter. “I do try to buy them brighter color clothing. I just never see them in it.”

Naomi Coe, a California-based interior designer specialising in kid’s rooms, said she experienced an influx of beige requests during the pandemic, when many parents were spending more time at home.

“Neutral is going to give you calm, serene, homey, cozy,” she said. “I’ve noticed a shift where people are after that feeling more.”

Laura Roso Vidrequin, founder of secondhand kids-clothing marketplace Kids O’Clock in London, said beige products sell three times as fast as other colours on the site—perhaps because they are gender-neutral, she said, hence easy to pass down.

Elizabeth Robles Jimenez, a mother of four in Downey, Calif., said she bought plenty of pink and princessy products for her first three daughters before settling on beige décor and wooden toys for her 2-year-old, Ava.

“I think whites and creams give her an opportunity to discover her own self and not have the mentality that because she’s a girl, she needs all pink,” Ms. Robles Jimenez said.

Mushie, a startup that makes pacifiers, bibs and stacking cups in beige hues, has seen double-digit growth this year, according to its chief executive, Levi Feigenson. Moms cited the labels Oat, Soor Ploom, the Simple Folk, Tiny Cottons, Jamie Kay, Nora Lee, Rylee + Cru as others with an abundance of beige products.

“When I started my company [over 10] years ago, you couldn’t get a baby or child garment in a neutral colour unless you went to Europe,” said Marissa Buick, the Brooklyn founder of kidswear brand Soor Ploom. Her colour choices reflect ones “you won’t find in a shop, but are in nature,” she said.


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A water lily painting by Claude Monet of his Giverny gardens is expected to achieve at least US$65 million at Christie’s November sale of 20th-century art in New York

Le bassin aux nymphéas, or water lily pond, painted around 1917 to 1919, is a monumental canvas extending more than six-and-a-half feet wide and more than three-feet tall, that has been in the same anonymous private collection since 1972. According to Christie’s, the painting has never been seen publicly.

The artwork is “that rarest thing: a masterpiece rediscovered,” Max Carter, Christie’s vice chairman of 20th and 21st century art said in a news release Thursday.

A first look at this thickly painted example of Monet’s famed and influential water lily series will be on Oct. 4, when it is revealed in Hong Kong.

The price record for a Nymphéas painting by Monet was set in May 2018 for Nymphéas en fleur, another large-scale work that had been in the collection of Peggy and David Rockefeller. That painting sold for nearly US$85 million.

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