Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Trending Tuesday: Trends I can't explain

Sometimes, I just don't understand trends. I'm not supposed to admit this; after all, my job training is to spot trends in the market place before they become mainstream. However, there are several major trends that have floated right by me, and I cannot understand them. I wouldn't advise you to rush right out and invest in any of them; the trends are on their way downhill and out the door.

First, it's mustaches. No one really knows where this trend came from. In 2006, the Seattle Times noted that mustaches were a form of humiliation, linking them with Saddam Hussein. In January 2009, the New York Times reported that mustaches were on their way back. By October, the Boston Globe reported on the mysterious exile of the mustache. The Globe said that mustaches were just a comedy bit; the mustaches had not regained their status as a true sign of machismo. StyleList wondered aloud - is it really a trend, or is a fad? Could mustaches really stick around through 2009? But it was obvious by the end of 2009 that mustaches had regained some sort of status, even if it was as a whimsical attention-grabbing stunt. The hipster world had latched on, and mustaches made appearances in weddings, on Etsy, and at Octoberfest. For your guide to mustaches, check out your guide to mustaches vs. beards. Just please, please, don't grow one.

Second: cupcakes. Most likely a sign of our formerly overly-indulgent culture, cupcakes made an appearance as the star of boutique bakeries in 2007. Celebrities picked up on the idea, and started incorporating cupcakes in lieu of wedding cakes. By 2009, the trend had worked its way into mainstream wedding culture as cake trees became all the rage. Next on the agenda for the cupcake is the Middle East, where the trend has arrived full-force as some American brands are making an appearance.

Finally, the recent appearance of "Keep Calm and Carry On" posters. A resurgence in nostalgia for the time of (most of) our grandparents, the poster gives us strength to keep going in a time of economic uncertainty. It also gives us a way to express ourselves, as seen by the hundreds of parodies floating around the web. My favorite thus far? "Keep Calm and Have a Cupcake," as seen in Barnes & Noble's Valentine's Day display.

1 comment:

  1. If it weren't for Etsy, I wouldn't know any of these as trends. Do I live under a rock?