Pot Couture Gives Mary Jane a Makeover

  • by Sabrina Fendrick September 22, 2010

    By Margot, Co-creator potcouture.com

    Have you ever had a friend so dear and true that you knew your forces combined could accomplish anything? When Pepper and I became friends, we felt that way almost immediately. We looked out on the future and thought, “This is going to be a blast!” We promptly determined that we would grow old in the same nursing home, live to at least 92, and flirt obscenely with younger men in their 70s. But before that we would be unstoppable, powerful women, taking over the world one brilliant project at a time. Pepper and I carefully reviewed our joint passions and settled on the thing that we loved most in the world after each other and our dear sweet Misters—pot.

    PotCouture.com is a labor of love.  Marijuana has brought such wonderful things into both of our lives that we felt compelled to share our stories so that other people could read and share their own. What was initially conceived as a little blog about our pot adventures in New York City evolved into a much bigger venture: the first online magazine developed for stylish, professional women who use marijuana.  While we were researching our project we were both inspired and surprised to realize there were hardly any sites catering to the interests of what we would call “lady stoners.” However, there was one pinpoint of light in the darkness: an excellent article in Marie Claire in 2009 entitled “Stiletto Stoners.” The public response to that article was so positive that we knew we were onto something. So we forged ahead, and in July 2010 we quietly launched Potcouture.com.

    Well, it wasn’t quiet on purpose. No one knew we were there. But we believed that in holding up our own little pinpoints in the darkness we were beckoning our fellow lady stoners to “come out of the smoky closet,” as Sabrina Fendrick of the NORML Women’s Alliance would say. We had faith that as other women like us held up their lights in reply, the truth would become profoundly apparent: everybody’s doing it!

    I would respectfully assert that one of the larger problems the marijuana legalization movement faces is one of perception. Frankly, Mary Jane needs a makeover. Television and movies consistently portray the marijuana user as a burden on society. You’ve seen variations on the theme: the stereotypical stoner is wrapped in a tie-dye security blanket and passed out on a threadbare couch, one hand in a bag of Doritos and the other clutching the mightiest bong in all the land. In fact, one of the more prevalent and ridiculous arguments against the legalization of marijuana goes something like this:

    “We’re in a recession, people! If California legalizes marijuana, the whole left side of the country will pass out at the wheel, leaving the rest of us to shoulder this economy one sober step at a time! Fear! Anger! Gnashing of teeth! Arrrrrrggh!”

    But that unconscious dude on the couch isn’t representative of us. In fact, I know a lot of stoners, and that doesn’t resemble any of them. As a professional woman living and working in New York City, I meet people every day who smoke pot for health and relaxation. The image of the unmotivated lump doesn’t begin to portray the ingenuity, persistence, intelligence, and passion embodied in my fellow “lady stoners.”

    PotCouture.com is our effort to illuminate the darkness. We are holding it up over our heads as high as we can, answering the other pinpricks we see in the distance, lights like the NORML Women’s Alliance. When we first talked with Sabrina we knew we were meeting a true friend. The activism undertaken by the NORML Women’s Alliance shows integrity, clarity, and reason, and we share their goals to provide a voice and face for female marijuana users who are not accurately represented by mainstream media, or by what has become traditional pot culture.

    It is with great happiness and pride that we don our highest heels in solidarity with the NORML Women’s Alliance, holding up our flickering candles with theirs in faith that if others see our collective glow they will join our cause. Opponents to Proposition 19 and other marijuana ballot measures know better than anyone that the stereotypical pothead is a myth, and yet they manipulate that problematic image as much as possible, stretching it as far as it will go. Because the truth we know—and the truth they fear—is that stoners aren’t losers. We’re innovators, entrepreneurs, visionaries, activists and voters. And our forces combined can bring logical, healthy change to the marijuana policies in this country, ending prohibition at long last and implementing safe, reasonable laws for the medical and recreational use of pot.

    Join us. Let’s make some light.

    23 responses to “Pot Couture Gives Mary Jane a Makeover”

    1. Brian says:

      When we take over can we make it mandatory for all protesters and other unpleasant people to smoke beforehand?

    2. Maurice says:

      I have been posting this idea on NORML’s facebook postings: how about promoting vaporization and ingestion of cannabis for an additional image change? Sure, the mobility of a joint is awesome, but, inhaling burning plant material is just not healthy. This is one aspect I see as vulnerable for attack when it comes to legalization. So, for ones own health, and the health of the initiative, lets start encouraging alternatives to smoking (still keeping in mind that there are good vaporizers versus not so good by the materials used for construction).

      -Maurice (long time cannabis user, but no longer smoking it)

    3. Trish says:

      Thank you SO MUCH for taking the lead on this issue. The majority of my “pot-head” friends are also intelligent, hard-working people. It’s about time that an organization was formed that will help shed light on the real stoners of the world, not the media’s stereotypical portrayals. Thank you, thank you, thank you! 🙂

    4. MaryMixx says:

      I’m liking you ladies and it’s “high” time the truth about Maryjane users be told. Can you see my candle in the darkness? Over here!

    5. NORML / Man's alliance says:

      Hey ! It’s not Maryjane …….it’s JerryWayne !

    6. Stacy says:

      I agree with Maurice. I think we should definitely promote the usage of a healthier way to get high. I think it adds to the arguments for pot legalization.

    7. wilpri says:

      You feel the need for separate sites for “lady stoners”? WTF will it take for us to get past division of the sexes? It didn’t occur to you that you were already (as is so often the case) included in the “regular” stoner sites? fcs…

      [Editor’s note: It is never a bad thing in American politics to organize women…who, along with minorities, traditionally are woefully under-represented at drug policy reform organizations, public conferences and seminars and in the halls of state capitals and the Congress advocating for cannabis law reforms.

      It is important to recognize that the most powerful constituent in American politics is an angry mother.

      In the 1970s angry mothers successfully helped to stop cannabis policy reforms…conversely, in 2010, angry mothers are helping to end cannabis prohibition.]

    8. Gaynel says:

      OK girls, where do I sign up? It’s really funny somehow that no one has ever taken this high road before now. You are so right about everythiong you’ve said. My friends and I are professionals who enjoy relaxing with a good bowl. I think another misconception is that smoking pot makes you lose your mind and not able to function. I’m here to say that that just isn’t so. I have more clarity when I’m “stoned” than I ever did straight.

    9. We’re SO happy to see people respond so favorably. And I agree with Maurice – there are definitely areas to address with the methods of consuming marijuana. If any of you are interested in pitching ideas or ways we could start to work on this, let us know! We’re really impressed with the calibre of people we’ve met through this movement. To see all your “lights” is really damn encouraging.

      <3 M+P

    10. Maurice says:

      Begin by bluntly addressing it on web sites, blogs, or articles you utilize for communication.

      Many may not know of vaporization (especially those who might begin using this substance when it is legalized), or the types of edibles (apart from the stereotypical “brownies”) available; and not to forget the type/duration/affordability of the high.

      This can certainly shed positive light in demonstrating that we are being smart about the way in which we chose to intoxicate ourselves. In addition, you can still couple a vaporizer with a bong and have a fun time.