The annual birthday or Christmas gift challenge has become an easy task for my husband since the day we met. Nothing makes me happier than adding new tools to my collection, no matter how big or small, even a box of screws makes me happy. And if he is unsure, an even better gift is a Bunnings gift card. But as much as I love the hardware giant, I always raise an eyebrow when I see Bunnings’ Mother’s Day ads.
What Bunnings Think Women Need From Hardware Stores
Bunnings’ idea of the perfect Mother’s Day gift is usually plants, pots, garden hoses, garden chairs, solar lights, the list goes on. They don’t even stop at cleaning products for the garden, there is literally a leaf blower in their Mother’s Day gift catalogue to give Mum as a present. It’s like gifting your mum a vacuum for Christmas. Hey, Bunnings! Some women like to use wood supplies and power tools, we don’t just spend our days potting around in the garden making sure the lawn is green and the flowers watered!
50 Shades of Dads
Bunnings’ Father’s Day gift ideas are neatly categorised into ‘Every Type of Dad’, apparently there is the entertainer, the DIYer, the gardener and the tech dad. So basically any Bunnings product is suitable for men, women on the other hand should remain in their little nursery flock and exchange tips on when to plant their hydrangeas and debate about worm poo versus compost. Far, far away from the tool shop…
I always love the fact that there are so many women working at Bunnings stores (and not just in the nursery) so I really don’t understand why the biggest hardware store in the country is drawing this big fat line between the genders in this regard.
A Lot of Change is Needed
I guess I have gotten used to walking around Bunnings like it’s my second home (it IS my second home, let’s not kid ourselves) that I forget that there is still a lot of work to do in terms of gender equality and changing these static gender stereotypes and definitions of what a woman’s and a man’s interests should be, there really shouldn’t be any difference made at all. My husband for example is a chef, he loves cooking and spending hours in the kitchen working his magic, which is, as per our good old-fashioned tradition, assigned to the female gender role. I hate cooking and prefer making lots of noise in the workshop building things until I’m called in for dinner. The dinner we will then eat sitting on the outdoor daybed I built last summer. So at the end of the day, everyone is pulling their weight in the household, it’s just a ‘modern’ distribution of chores that are different to the generally accepted gender roles in a man-woman relationship.
I hope that by showing up on my public profiles and sharing my love for tools, woodwork and doing all the ‘man things’ while wearing mascara and a bra, I can encourage other women to shake off the gender role that has been defined for us (not BY us!) and try something new.
You don’t have to be a nursery-mum, you can be a chainsaw-mum!
And while writing this I got a bit angry with Bunnings and I think I will put my Karen-hat on and speak to the manager about their misogynistic concept of what women need from a hardware store.
To be continued.