Pussyhats on sale at The Hat Shop on Thompson Street in Soho. | TEQUILA MINSKY
Uptown to Downtown, East Side to West, from art openings to religious services, in store windows and atop heads, “pussyhats” are popping up everywhere. Mostly women are wearing them, but some men, too.
They’re part of the Pussyhat Project, which aims to knit, crochet, and sew up to 1.17 million of the pink, cat-eared caps by January 21, the day of the massive Women’s March on Washington. That’s the number of protesters the Capitol Mall is said to be able to hold. So far, more than 110,000 people have registered on Facebook to say they will participate, and organizers are estimating that 200,000 people or more will actually march.
According to the group’s website, pussyhatproject.com, “The idea is to blanket the Mall at the Women’s March in a sea of pink pussyhats, a response to the president-elect’s attitude toward women and their bodies.”
The hats will provide the marchers with a “means to make a unique collective visual statement that will allow activists better to be heard,” and also give people who can’t be on the mall “a way to represent themselves and support women’s rights.”
Preparing for January 21 protests, women plan their headgear
A participant at January 15’s PEN America WRITERS RESIST event sports a pussyhat. | TEQUILA MINSKY
People can a volunteer to knit hats for others, with a pattern and instructions provided on the website. And cap crafters can also “register” their pussyhats, then add them to an online Hat Anthology.
The project’s organizers admit that “pussyhat” is “a loaded word” because it includes a “derogatory” term for a part of women’s bodies, but say they want to “reclaim it” from Trump, who during the fall campaign was caught on a tape bragging about his freedom as “a star” to “grab [women] by the pussy.”
Not surprisingly, pink wool has been flying off the shelves at knitting shops, like Purl on Broome Street. Stacy Rosenstock, a Village resident, said she ordered her wool and found a hat pattern online, but then went to Purl to buy circular needles. It took her a while to get it right on the first hat, but she figures it will now only take a day to knit a second one for her daughter.