TikTok

A coffee vs commerce conundrum



Jannel Therese Blank Street

“Six pounds for a cup of tea and you don’t even get a china cup!” This complaint was quoted to me some 30 years ago by my friend G; his mum aghast at the price of a cuppa in some National Trust cafe or other. Yet it’s a refrain that auto-plays all too frequently in my head when I pass any number of overpriced chain coffee outlets. Especially in the last two years when the premiumisation of, well, everything has played out in the world’s fashionable metros.

At WatchHouse (below), a new-ish UK coffee chain, you do get a lovely ceramic cup. The chain is notable for its upscale Aesop-esque branding (its design team is headed by a former Aesop designer), superior snacks, well-mannered baristas and several-steps-up-from-Starbucks hospitality area. (more…)



Not your mother’s L.L. Bean tote



L.L. Bean psycho tote

“Boat and Tote sales are up 30 percent over last year and have been one of the top drivers of new buyers this spring and summer. It’s been really fun seeing a new generation of customers taking our classic tote and making it their own.” L.L. Bean spokesperson, Amanda Hannah.

Everybody’s talking about how young peeps have co-opted the WASP-ish L.L. Bean Boat and Tote®* as a cheap-n-chic self-expression device. (more…)



What’s next for old-school fashion influencers?



Veronika Heilbrunner by Tommy Ton

What does the post-burnout, algorithm-fatigue influencer landscape look like? Vogue Business posed the question to me last week and I was happy to share some insights.

Vogue Business’s article is part of a series looking at the evolution of the ‘creator economy’ and this article looked specifically at how ‘influencers’ (i.e. bloggers and Instagrammers) are maturing in today’s fast-paced Gen-Z obsessed world. (more…)



The YouTube lifestyle sell-ebrities aren’t happy



Emma Chamberlain

“I just don’t like being famous. You’re lying to people to try to make them seem like you’re their friend for the sole purpose of selling things to them.”

This is a worthwhile read from Vox, on the tenuous career of YouTube influencers, of whom a minority make a profitable career from selling their lifestyle to followers, while the rest are burnt out, broke, cancelled and more. Read more here. (more…)