Monday, January 23, 2012

goodbye nostalgia, hello über-nostalgia

I've been reading that nostalgia is the key to marketing in a recession (writes Peter): see the design blog of Gloucester agency Alias and the Marketing Society's debate.

From past experience I've noticed that our love for nostalgia does always seem to increase in a recession (this being my fourth).

However, it is ironic that to give the nostalgic experience any life and authenticity these days requires the talent and dedication of extremely skillful designers, artists, film makers and marketeers (and arguably requires more effort than is needed than to create something new and contemporary).

The current nostalgic decade of choice has to be the roaring '20s. And now that artists, musicians and film makers have access to such powerful digital technology, any nostalgia-based creations can be digitally enhanced to make a sort of über-nostalgia that goes beyond the realms of the pastiche.

A few examples of über-nostalgia:

FILM: The extraordinarily successful film 'The Artist' is a tribute to silent movies so faithful that it remains 'silent' throughout. Capturing that old movie feel required ultra modern movie technology, which was then projected onto purpose built and smaller flat screens, as found back in the 1920's.

Has the adorable Uggie from The Artist walked straight out of the 1920's HMV logo?

MUSIC: Take a listen to C. W. Stoneking but with your eyes closed for the first few minutes. Doesn't it sound like he's a black blues hero straight out of Mississippi in the Depression? But no, C.W. is a 30-year old Australian living in Bristol!

PACKAGING: Hendrick's Gin is a beautifully constructed pastiche of the "flapper's tipple of choice". Has this been stolen straight out of the Museum of Brands, Packaging and Advertising in London?

1920's Gordon's Gin (with medicinal serving suggestion!) vs. 2011 Hendrick's Gin

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

our favourite shops {anywhere}

Although shopping is kind of off our agenda for January, we've shared our favourite London shops here before and thought in the spirit of New Year's inspiration we'd throw it open to shops anywhere at all. So here are our picks...

From top:
Daikanyama, Tokyo "interesting boutiques beautifully designed and great for people watching"
Merci, Paris "whereas Colette is too cool for school, this is a concept store that is just really lovely to spend time in"
Independent cookware shops "whoever would have thought you could buy a pair of 'onion glasses' - ingenious
Shrewsbury Antiques Market "a treasure trove of stuff that you just can't find anywhere"
Selfridges, London "after being to New York, Paris, Rome and countless other places, I really think this is the best shop in the world"
J R Raine & Son, Middleton-in-Teesdale "a tiny warren of a DIY shop which sells everything Homebase offers, except in smaller amounts and cheaper"
Paul Smith "nuf said"