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Interesting little article from the WSJ about the throwback trend in consumer packaged goods. While the trend itself isn’t all that remarkable, I found the “Chip Flashback” sidebar amusing. Here’s a simple recipe for creating a throwback package:

  • Colors: The brown, orange and yellow palette is ‘very time stamped’ to the 1960s. Limitations in printing techniques also meant that only a few colors could be used.
  • Letter Blocks: Often used by TV shows and stations in the 1960s to highlight color-television technology, says Mr. Murphy.
  • Typeface: ‘Doritos’ is in a dramatic but playful serif font typical of the 1970s, says Mr. Wallace. (Serif fonts have feet at the edges. Sans-serif fonts do not.)
  • Flat Design: Before computers, shadow effects and colors that gradually blended into one another weren’t common.
Follow these rules and your brand can go retro, too.

All of the great stuff from Old Spice got me whistling…

In light of the iPad announcement, I couldn’t resist looking back at how far we’ve come.

I know its been a few weeks since I’ve posted any commercials, but just in time for you last minute shoppers out there, why not consider a VCR? They’re now much easier to program! Apparently all you need to do is find a pay phone.

We’re often suckers for anything retro here at W5. It’s not that we’re anti-technology, but love the reminders of what used to be and how far we’ve come. In that spirit, I give you what is the most interesting convergence of old and new technology I’ve seen in some time, the Novophone retro handset. Quite simply, you get the old fashioned handset and it plugs into your modern mobile phone.  Break out your old pieces of foam and handset add-ons to avoid neck pain on those longer calls!


The current issue of I.D. magazine has an interesting feature about toys. Actually, it’s not about toys as much as it is about our recollection of the toys we grew up with. They ask a series of designers and critics to consider their favorite toys from their youth and write a brief  essay about what that toy meant to them. The result is subtly fascinating. Each essay serves as a tiny memoir, a love letter to the toy, and a dissection of the object itself. They take something that has been taken for granted, or relegated to nostalgia, and breathe some new life into  it.