Gift Guide: Badass Gifts for Cool, Feminist Babies

HOLIGAYS 2017 / Autostraddle

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Let’s be real. Shopping for baby stuff is fun. The tiny clothing! The colorful board books! The neverending options for toys that light up and play (not-annoying-at-all) music! So fun!

But it’s also a freakin’ minefield of pink and blue and low-key rape culture and snore-inducing gender norms. Like, just UGH. As a queer mama to a little firecracker of a one-year-old, I know how hard it is. So I’ve done the hard work for you of finding some badass gifts for your kids or to scandalize your conservative family at your holiday gathering of choice. Behold!

Statement Onesies for Babies Who DGAF About the Patriarchy

Autostraddle Gift Guide: Badass Baby Onesies

[1] Angry Liberal Feminist Killjoy by Feminist Apparel ($29.95). [2] Cats Against Catcalls by Feminist Apparel ($29.95). [3] Love + Fighter by Wildfang ($28). [4] EatSleepRiotRepeat by UnrulyEmotion ($17). [5] Intersectional Rosie by Feminist Apparel ($29.95). [6] Feminist Fox Doesn’t Care for Your Misogyny by Feminist Apparel ($29.95). [7] I Have No Patience For Your Transphobia by FabulouslyFeminist ($24.99). [8] Gender Traitor by Autostraddle ($25).

Ahh, the onesie. I just recently had an epiphany when I realized that bodysuits are actually onesies for adults. Anyway, this angry liberal feminist killjoy onesie will send the clear message that this baby is not here to deal with patriarchal bullshit. If you’re into a fuzzier, cuddlier feminist message, this cats against catcalls graphic onesie is just perfect for a baby who is not f*ckin’ kitten about street harassment. Wildfang made this simple Lover + Fighter onesie for the little one who believes in the power of love and the power of fighting for justice. Or maybe you need a gift for a baby who’s a hardcore SJW already like that gets straight to the message. Intersectional Rosie is here to say that we all can do it! (Yes, I’m aware this is a t-shirt, not a onesie. It doesn’t come as a onesie. Just go with it.) If the baby you’re shopping for is just kind of real aloof, but also has claws sharp like switchblades, consider this feminist fox look. I need this one as a grown-up onesie, I think, but if you’re a baby who just wants to make sure the world knows where you stand on dealing with offensive cis opinions, this “I have no patience for your transphobia” onesie is perf. And finally, the gender traitor onesie, which is a personal favorite of my little dinosaur.

The Library is Open for Babies Who Read

Autostraddle Gift Guide: Badass Babies and Books

[1] This Little Trailblazer: A Girl Power Primer by Joan Holub ($6). [2] Counting on Community by Innosanto Nagara ($10). [3] Skin Again by bell hooks ($11). [4] Introducing Teddy: A gentle story about gender and friendship by Jess Walton ($12). [5] I Dissent: Ruth Bader Ginsburg Makes Her Mark by Debbie Levy ($10). [6] Little Leaders: Bold Women in Black History by Vashti Harrison ($10). [7] Worm Loves Worm by J.J. Austrian ($10). [8] Malala’s Magic Pencil by Malala Yousafzai ($11).

Books are always a good gift for a baby, no matter what age. My baby loves This Little Trailblazer: A Girl Power Primer! The illustrations are colorful and fun and the majority of the women included are WOC, so that’s cool! You’ve probably heard of A is for Activist, but did you know there’s a counting book by the same author, Counting on Community? If you don’t have a little one, you may or may not be aware that bell hooks is writing board books for little kids. Skin Again is a great place to start. I really love that hooks doesn’t dumb down the politics of skin even as she makes it accessible to growing minds. Waffle actually turned me on to Introducing Teddy: A gentle story about gender and friendship, a story about a trans teddy bear girl. It’s a great book both to model for cis kids how to be a supportive friend when someone comes out as trans and for trans kids to show a story where a trans girl comes out and is treated with love. I Dissent: Ruth Bader Ginsburg Makes Her Mark is the children’s book about RBG that you didn’t know you needed. If you already love RGB, you’re going to love her even more after meeting her as a young girl. Every bookshelf needs Little Leaders: Bold Women in Black History because they sure as shit aren’t going to learn about these brilliant women in their history classes. Worm Loves Worm is another Waffle pick. This one’s about two gendernonspecific worms who fall in love and get married and when their friends ask, “Who’s going to wear the dress? Who’s going to wear the tux?” they answer, “Who cares? We’re in love!” Yes, it’s very cute and so sweet that your Trump-loving cousin may not even realize it’s about gay marriage. Another should-be-classic for any kid’s library is Malala’s Magic Pencil, a story about Malala written by Malala herself. The illustrations themselves are worth the price and the story will inspire young people to pursue their dreams.

Seriously, F*ck Your Gender Reveal Party

Autostraddle Gift Guide: Badass Babies + Anti Gender Reveal

[1] Gender Self-Determination Print by FabulouslyFeminist ($15.99). [2] Cinnamon Rolls Not Gender Roles T-Shirt by ZealoApparel ($27.24). [3] Gender Roles? I Don’t Give A Fluff Print by FabulouslyFeminist ($15.99). [4] The Future is Fluid Onesie by Wildfang ($28). [5] Stop Equating Genitals With Gender Print by FabulouslyFeminist ($15.99). [6] Rainbow Babe by Feminist Apparel ($29.95).

I have for you here a selection of prints and apparel that would be a great gift if you want to be a feminist killjoy about someone’s gender reveal party. But it’s the holidays, so maybe just respect other people’s (silly) decisions and give these cute gifts to a queer and/or trans parent who’ll really appreciate them. These three prints by FabulouslyFeminist are perfect for a baby’s nursery. Choose from “Gender Self-Determination,” “Gender Roles? I Don’t Give a Fluff!”, or “Stop Equating Genitals with Gender.” Wildfang is at it again with their “The Future is Fluid” onesie for the parent who is just not going to answer the question, “Is it a boy or a girl?” Really I just want this “Cinnamon Rolls Not Gender Roles” tee for myself, TBH with you. Lastly, in lieu of an “It’s a boy” or “It’s a girl” onesie, check out this rainbow “babe” shirt for your gender reveal!

Badass Toys for Brilliant Little Babes

Autostraddle Gift Guide: Badass Babies + Toys

[1] Frida Kahlo Amigurumi DOll by noraandjune ($50). [2] Ladies of the Supreme Court Finger Puppets by TomboyTogs ($5 each or $20 for the set). [3] Periodic Table Building Blocks by Uncle Goose ($32.95). [4] Produce Play Food Set With Crate by Melissa & Doug ($15.86). [5] DC Comics Wonder Woman Silicone Teether by Bumkins ($6.99). [6] Rainbow Stacking Ring by PlanToys ($18).

Babies probably shouldn’t play with this Frida Kahlo amigurumi until they’re old enough to not choke on the eyeballs, but it’d be a cute decoration for their nursery. Finger puppets are super fun for little babies when an adult wears them and brings them close to their face during a play session. When they’re older, kids can reenact the women of the SCOTUS collectively screaming into the void. I don’t know why this box of farm veggies seems gay. Like Baby’s First CSA. Or Baby’s First Lesbian Commune. I don’t know, it just feels gay to me. These periodic table building blocks are great for babies of any gender, but especially for girls to get a head start on STEM. This official Wonder Woman silicone teether will keep slimy baby mouths occupied while quietly indoctrinating them into the ways of the Amazonians. Finally, if you need to be really, really careful about your queer gift-giving, this rainbow stacker doesn’t scream “HOMOSEXUAL AGENDA,” but the agenda is stacked right in there. Shh. Don’t tell your Aunt Patty.

Thinking of buying gifts from the Autostraddle Store?

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KaeLyn is a 40-year-old hard femme bisexual dino mom. You can typically find her binge-watching TV, standing somewhere with a mic or a sign in her hand, over-caffeinating herself, or just generally doing too many things at once. She lives in Upstate NY with her spouse, a baby T. rex, a scaredy cat, an elderly betta fish, and two rascally rabbits. You can buy her debut book, Girls Resist! A Guide to Activism, Leadership, and Starting a Revolution if you want to, if you feel like it, if that's a thing that interests you or whatever.

KaeLyn has written 230 articles for us.



    I love the items you picked out! I * love * the titles you gave the section! I love your summaries!


    May all these badass feminist babies be our future.

  2. Thanks for this guide! The only cousin I’m out to has a one-year-old, and these books sound like great, relatively subtle options (her father is very conservative). I like the intersectional Rosie shirt too, but I don’t know her kid’s size. Books fit perfectly!

    • I believe she is older! She was born a little after my friend had her baby, and my friend’s baby turned two at the end of August! So she is 2 and change.

    • @rebcalle and @mtuckered: It’s pretty wild that she’s one already! She’s almost as old as I was when I came to the U.S. as an adoptee. And she’s such a little person already! I plan to write about it more when I’m not drowning in life because parenthood is a TRIP AND A HALF! Thanks for remembering! <3

      • I look forward to reading it! I am completely unsurprised that she has a strong personality even at so young an age. <3

  3. Great ideas! I always like to spoil my little niece and nephew, and I usually get something educational and fun and not to stereotypical. My nephew however, at 4, goes crazy for firetrucks, big machines and lego; and has no interest in the dolls or stuffed animals we gave him. He even took his toy truck to bed for a while, instead of a stuffed animal.

    There is this one childrens book, I don’t think it’s been translated but I want to share it anyway, about a lamb who wants to be a pig. It is so adorable, and can be an easy metaphore for trans issues. You can see some pictures with this article.

  4. Thanks for the ideas, especially on books! We will definitely have to get some.

    My wife and I have been getting tons of books for the babies at places like Goodwill and Library sales; when the books are about boys or have dads in it, we’ve been crossing the male pronouns out and writing “she” “her” “mommy” etc on them :)

    • Yes! When my brother and I were little my parents would often change pronouns so the dads did more grocery shopping and child care (just like our dad) and the moms did more building (just like our mom). I still have their copy of Building a House with many women construction workers.

  5. If I remember correctly there was a children’s book about a black Santa Clause who had a Mr. Clause and I think it was written by a Jewish man. I think was called Santa and His Husband, but I could have the name wrong? If that’s the case and true, it could be a good book to read.

  6. Thanks! I love worms (and the fact that all are both male and female) and had not heard about Worm loves Worm. Our new 6 year old friend who is staying with us is not sure about two women being married. She said it’s weird. I said it’s okay to be weird. I will definitely have to look into this book!

    • I just found Skin Again and Worm Loves Worm at my small Midwestern town library! I’m excited to read them to the girls!

  7. KaeLyn this is very relevant to my interests.

    Octavia has A is for Activists which I love but I didn’t know bell hooks wrote kids books so thank you!

    Thank you for all the recommendations!

    • Hello Lucas,

      After doing more research, we are making adjustments some adjustments during this week (including removing the links in question that you pointed out). Thank you for bringing it to our attention.

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