The Big Little Red Riding Hood Costume Debate

The Big Little Red Riding Hood Costume Debate: A blog about costumes in honor of Halloween 2017.

The Big Little Red Riding Hood Costume Debate

A blog about costumes in honor of Halloween 2017.

By: Caroline (Carrie) N. Rivera-Hernandez on June 20, 2017

Tucked away in the basement of the New York Public Library’s Picture Collection lies a folder labeled “Little Red Riding Hood—Miscellaneous.” The folder contains a hodgepodge of material: two fabric swatches made into dolls, a cutout paper doll from an old magazine with a paper costume that doubles as an envelope, and various advertisements for toys and children’s books. The pieces are arranged chronologically by date, with the earliest item dated 1916 and the most recent 1946.

Wednesday, October 25, 2017

The Big Little Red Riding Hood Costume Debate

Halloween is one of the most exciting holidays of the year. People choose all sorts of costumes to be on Halloween. One of the most popular costumes is little red riding hood.

Red riding hood was first told as a fairy tale in 1697 by Charles Perrault. The story has been told and retold many times since then with many variations and has been seen in books, movies, tv shows and even musicals!

The controversy about the red riding hood costume comes from the fact that there are multiple versions of the costume. One version is a sweet innocent girl in a dress with a basket and a cape that looks like it could have been made by grandma. The other version is more sexy with shorter dresses and higher cuts. Some shops have even started selling red riding hood adult costumes with thigh highs and lingerie included!

So which is more appropriate for your child? That depends on your family values and what you think is age appropriate for your child. There are many options to choose from so you can find a good fit no matter what you’re looking for!

When is a red riding hood costume not a red riding hood costume? When it is a Little Red Riding Hood costume, of course! The debate over whether the traditional children’s fairy tale character should be referred to simply as “Red Riding Hood” or by her more complete name has been raging since the story’s inception and shows no signs of stopping.

It all started with the Grimm’s version of the fairy tale. The brothers published “Little Red Cap” in 1812, and the tale was an instant success. There were several versions of the story already in existence, but this iteration was far more popular than anything that had come before it. The Grimms later credited one of their close friends for suggesting that they include the story in their collection, and he also happened to be a fan of a young lady who modeled for several of the illustrations. The first four illustrations from the original publication are shown below:

The popularity of this version of the story has led to hundreds (perhaps thousands) of other published versions, including illustrated and non-illustrated editions; different transliterations; graphic novels; plays; and even movies and TV shows. Every one of them has its own treatment of what to call our heroine. Some use “Little Red Cap,” some use

Many parents ask, “Is it ok for a boy to wear a Little Red Riding Hood costume for Halloween?”

It is a controversial topic, but I am here to make the case that a Little Red Riding Hood costume is great for boys and girls.

There are many reasons why this is true.

In fact, I would argue that the original Little Red Riding Hood was actually a young boy!

Let me explain…

Yesterday, my daughter and I were discussing her upcoming role in the school play as Little Red Riding Hood. She was talking about how she would wear a red cape, with a hood, for the performance.

“Why do you think she is called Little Red Riding Hood?” I asked.

“Because her name is Little Red Riding Hood,” she replied. “And because she wore a red riding hood.””But that’s kind of silly,” I said. “The wolf wore a riding hood too, and it wasn’t red.””Well, he could have worn a blue one.”

For Halloween, it is a delight for many parents to dress their baby in costumes that incorporate hoods. These range from the popular “Little Red Riding Hood”, to animals like elephants, giraffes, and rabbits. Yet, there are many that say these hoods “can be dangerous”.

The American Academy of Pediatrics has issued a warning against using infant costumes with hoods during the annual trick-or-treating event on Oct 31. The warning states that while they are adorable and fun, they may also be dangerous. Head hoods can cover the eyes, nose and mouth of children under two years old thus compromising breathing in case of accidents or falls. Other reports suggest that these kinds of costumes may also lead to overheating if worn indoors or when accompanied by blankets or other layers that make babies warm up too quickly.

In some cases, the AAP suggests looking for alternate costumes without hoods but with the same theme available in stores or online. If you already purchased a costume for your baby that has a head hood, remove it before putting on the costume itself.

A few years ago, the father of a friend of mine was complaining about the feminist movement. He particularly objected to the idea that women should wear whatever they wanted to work. If a woman showed up in a miniskirt and halter top, he said, that meant she wasn’t taking her job seriously.

I tried to explain that this was actually one of the most important things about feminism: the idea that what women do is at least as important and worthy of respect as what men do. If a man shows up for work in jeans and a t-shirt, no one assumes he doesn’t take his job seriously. But if a woman does the same, she gets labeled “unprofessional.” My friend’s father didn’t buy it.

A few weeks later, my friend sent me an email. Her father had been reading an article in The Economist about South Korea’s president being impeached because of massive corruption scandals. The article included a photo taken at her impeachment trial. She was wearing a bright red blazer over a black pantsuit with five buttons down the front and two rows of pockets on each breast, which were covered with sequins in the shape of giant flowers with enormous golden stamens sticking out from their centers.

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