Why vintAge typefaces and canned pickles appeal to the millennial generation
During periods of economic and international instability, populations have a natural tendency to look to the past for memories of happier times. In the Great Depression, the short flapper dresses of the 1920's dropped to floor length and women's hair followed suit. In each economic recession, Coca-Cola has gained greater ownership of the soda industry over Pepsi, because the brand has stood by its original positioning of the past, creating happiness through a sweet cola. Whereas Pepsi has continually positioned itself as moving forward to the future; e.g. PepsiNext, MAX, or the current platform, Live for Now. A brand that spoke well to the DotCom Boom, not a time of bust.
The Great Recession's reciprocal act created an appeal to nostalgic American aesthetics—coming to fruition in a movement of letterpress, vintage typefaces, canning vegetables, and over-educated under-employed twenty-somethings antiquing and discussing the best way to fake barn wood walls. During times of political unrest, corporate corruption, poverty, war and debt, the past brings a sense of dependable authenticity—because it can't change. The past is one of the secure notions that will always exist. Not all of it was positive and happy. We can't take back Japanese internment camps or hurricane Katrina, but the happy parts can never change to sad or disappointing.
The Millennial generation may not have ever experienced the eras that they are so greatly being inspired and influenced by, but due to the extreme accessibility to information, communication, articles, images and memoirs—it doesn't matter. Nineteen sixties dresses, whiskey cocktails, and Eames furniture are the current taste of a disenfranchised generation trying to grasp onto something that they never experienced, The Good Ol' Days.
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